I recently heard that the stairway on Wabasha Street that climbs the bluffs on St. Paul’s West Side was being torn down. The stairway, built in 1916 and known as the Green Stariway, suffered damage when a massive limestone rock fell 80 feet from the top of the bluff and slammed into the stairway. Due to structural damage the stairway was closed and removed.
It’s sad to see such an iconic and convenient stairway go.
It’s the latest addition to the “crumbling infrastructure” line politicians are pitching right now (6 bridges in Minnesota are closed or restricted right now). But what’s funny is that city engineers have been requesting funding to replace the bridge for 20 years. Annual maintenance on the stairway has cost $16,000 per year and in 2007 approximately $60,000 was spend for maintenance rehabilitation. There’s currently a funding request being considered to rebuild the stairway for $2 million.
Those are some pricey stairs.