Friday, January 30, 2009

Street Lake at 6th and Mortimer

Back in March of last year, a few friends and I began walking to The Gypsy Den for an early morning cup of coffee. On the way there, we stopped at the corner of 6th and Mortimer and took note of a street lake taking residence in this high-density residential neighborhood.

The next day we took the same route and lo and behold, the stagnant water was still there. "I think I found my new pet project", I said to my fellow caffeine whores.

Later that day, I headed back to take some pictures to send to Santa Ana Public Works when I encountered a gentleman by the name of Juan waiting for a bus just a few steps away from the street lake. Juan told me that he's lived in the neighborhood for over eight years and has yet to see a dry gutter.

Just then, he motioned me to turn around as a Mamacita was carefully pushing a stroller through the puddle, trying not to make too much of a splash. Juan was shaking his head in a sad, frustrated manner.

I thanked Juan for his time and told him that I'd be making some phone calls to get problem fixed.

"Thank you, and I wish you luck", Juan replied, as if he somehow knew that over the next few months, I'd be leaving several unreturned phone messages left on answering machines and operators down at Public Works.

Not until late in August did I finally have the wherewithal when placing a follow-up call to ask to speak directly with Jim Ross, the Executive Director down at Public Works.

At first, the operator seemed hesitant to connect me to him, but after briefly talking it up as if we had old business, the call was patched through.

When Jim Ross answered the call, I was immediately delighted with his "can do" attitude. It was a very refreshing experience and he assured me that he would have someone out the next day to survey the location.

Sure enough, Jim called me back the very next day and assured me that he'd have the pooling problem fixed by the end of the year.

October came and went, and November was flying by with no sign of progress. I was beginning to feel stood up. Then, one night as I was walking back from Monday Night Football down at Tommy Pastrami's, I noticed some orange cones that read "SAPW" set up around the lake. Later on that week, I headed down to the lake and snapped these photos below:


As the year came to a close, so did another one of my pet projects. Jim Ross down at Public Works did an amazing job and now this intersection is no longer a problem for those that walk, ride, or drive through this intersection.

And for once, I was actually glad to see my tax dollars being thrown down the gutter.


James G. Ross, Executive Director
20 Civic Center Plaza, M-21
Santa Ana, CA 92702
click for webpage

Emergency Repairs
714-647-3380

General Maintenance and Repairs
714-647-3380

Project Bid Information
714-647-5680

Public Works Information
714-647-5690

3 comments :

Anonymous said...

I like the fact that your persisitence actually helped get something done, but I love that sign in the background of picture #2.

El Diablo Blanco said...

Squeaky wheel gets the....concrete? :-) Good Job Ben Dayhoe. E Civic Center Drive needs some loving, I'll inquire if it's on the list.

zaba said...

This is great story -- all I can say is: Congratulations and muchas gracias for all you do Ben!