Politics & Government

Yes, the city knows what a straight line is

A pedestrian walks beneath the train overpass over Douglas in 2013.
A pedestrian walks beneath the train overpass over Douglas in 2013. File photo

A Wichita bridge famous for its pigeon poop has a new reason to make Wichitans look up.

This past weekend, Wichitans, particularly those who like things in a certain order, went wonky over the new LED lights in the Douglas Avenue railroad bridge. Lights installed in the underpass veer to the left and right instead of being placed in a straight line.

A photo of the misaligned lights was tweeted by Jon Looney on July 6.

Looney captioned the photo, “The new LED lights under the @DowntownWichita railroad bridge are great! But....Come on @CityofWichita Was a straight line so hard? #mildlyinfuriating #notmyjob.”

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">The new LED lights under the <a href="https://twitter.com/DowntownWichita?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DowntownWichita</a> railroad bridge are great! But....Come on <a href="https://twitter.com/CityofWichita?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@CityofWichita</a> Was a straight line so hard? <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/mildlyinfuriating?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#mildlyinfuriating</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/notmyjob?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#notmyjob</a> <a href="https://t.co/B9UXz0ELaO">pic.twitter.com/B9UXz0ELaO</a></p>&mdash; Jon Looney (@JonLooney) <a href="https://twitter.com/JonLooney/status/1015328603561693185?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">July 6, 2018</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Assistant Director of Public Works and Utilities-City Engineer Gary Janzen said the project simply wasn’t done yet and the lights had just been roughed in late last week.

"When they first install them, they’re not in final position," Janzen said late Monday afternoon. "If it’s not done now, it will be done by tomorrow."

Wichita Economic Development folks replied to the tweets, writing that the contractor will be back on Monday and Tuesday to use a laser to line up the lights for a final installation.

KFDI’s J.J. Hayes replied to the tweet, “OMG...my OCD is going crazy...I can’t deal!”

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Daniel, the contractor has not finished. They rough installed Friday and will be back on Monday and Tuesday and will use a laser to line the lights up for final install. <a href="https://t.co/ZY5z3uAj0d">https://t.co/ZY5z3uAj0d</a></p>&mdash; Wichita Economic Dev (@WichitaEconDev) <a href="https://twitter.com/WichitaEconDev/status/1015738473007939584?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">July 7, 2018</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">OMG...my OCD is going crazy....I can&#39;t deal! Might RT and steal this.</p>&mdash; JJ Hayes (@JJOnKFDI) <a href="https://twitter.com/JJOnKFDI/status/1015594030426656768?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">July 7, 2018</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

In March, the Eagle reported on ongoing structural repairs to the bridge before the NCAA tournament came to the Intrust Bank Arena. Plans included replacing the lighting system, cleaning and painting the underpass in time for the tournament.

However, all that was able to get done before the tournament was cleaning up the pigeon poop and temporary additional lighting.

Wichitans poked fun at the recent lighting job, with one Twitter user writing, “If only there was a good example of a straight line somewhere nearby…” along with a photo of a railroad track.

Janzen said an adjustment setting on the lights will allow them to be moved to their final positioning.

"[The contractor's] plan was to come out today," Janzen said. "It’s just the nature of the work. It’s not all done in one operation. There are multiple operations."

Murals running down the middle of Douglas Avenue, are part of a Douglas Design District initiative where the median area will be outlined and painted with a bright geometric designs.



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