Jacob Foltz-Gray and Jack Buckley enjoy the Reed Creek Greenway on Thursday evening. // Watchdog photo by Starr Sariego

Today’s round of questions, my smart-aleck replies and the real answers:

Question: The greenways in Asheville, though a long time coming, are very nice. I look forward to more miles being built. I do have a few questions that I would appreciate help in getting answered. Is the building of more public restrooms in the proposed plans? The Wilma Dykeman Greenway is very busy and there is no public restroom on the east side of the river. Yes, there is a restroom at French Broad River Park and Carrier Park but they are a distance away across the river. Also, the closest public restroom for the Reed Creek and Glenn’s Creek Greenways is across Merrimon Avenue in Weaver Park a couple miles distant from the terminus on Elizabeth Street. Is there a continuing maintenance plan in place for the upkeep of the greenways? There is buckling in the asphalt in a number of places along multiple greenways that has existed for a time. When will they be fixed? What about the use of electric-assist bicycles on the greenways? And the use of greenways for commercial eBike tours? I have not found any written reference that answers these questions. I thought no motorized vehicles are allowed on greenways. Most likely there has been some dispensation against including eBikes as motorized. What is the name, if any, of the creek along Reed Creek greenway? One would assume it is Reed Creek but on maps I found online, Reed Creek is the name of the creek along Glenn’s Creek. And the creek along Reed Creek has no name.

My answer: I have officially given up on my policy of no more than 35 questions within each Answer Man question.

Real answer: City of Asheville spokesperson Kim Miller gathered information from the city’s Parks & Recreation staff and the Transportation Department to answer this slew of queries.

She broke them down by topic, so that’s how we’ll roll.

First up, bathrooms: “There is a public restroom at 8 River Arts Way along the Wilma (Dykeman Greenway,” Miller said via email. “The city does not currently have plans for more restrooms.”

Regarding general maintenance, Miller said the Parks & Recreation Asset Management team maintains greenway mowing with both contracted service mowing and in-house crews.

“Our Trades Work team addresses repair and maintenance tasks on broken or damaged fixtures like benches, trash cans, and signs,” Miller said. “Most greenways trash cans are serviced once a day, five days a week.”

The current operational funding for deferred maintenance on greenways is $27,000 for the repair of asphalt, bridges, handrails, fencing, etc., she added. Miller also noted that you can report damage to the greenway paths or other issues by using the Asheville App.

As far as electric bikes, they are allowed on the greenway. Miller said the expectation of e-bike riders is that they “follow the common courtesies that we expect any other cyclist to follow.” That includes riding slowly around other users and alerting people you’re passing with either a bike bell or saying something like, “Passing on your left.”

On the Reed Creek/Glenn’s Creek issue, the reader is onto something.

“You’re right!” Miller said. “Our staff member in charge of Greenways just discovered that herself and has been in touch with the state mapping agency. It should be Reed Creek.”

Work alongside Long Shoals Road, near Valley Springs Middle School and Charles T. Koontz Intermediate School, is not related to the schools but is sewer work that’s part of the construction for a new retirement community. // Watchdog photo by John Boyle

Question: For what seems to be the longest time, there has been some work going on next to Long Shoals Road next to the Valley Springs middle school and intermediate school. Looks like they are digging up a lot, but I have no idea whatsoever what they’re doing. Any idea what they are doing and when they will be finished?

My answer: Searching for Glenn’s Creek? Or is it Reed Creek? That rascal is hard to find.

Real answer: Having checked on this, I can tell you it is not an NCDOT project or something Buncombe County Schools is doing.

The Metropolitan Sewerage District of Buncombe County had the answers.

“The subject work is part of a private development project that MSD is inspecting for future ownership transfer to MSD,” Mike Stamey, MSD’s director of construction, said via email. “The name of the development is Julian Woods Retirement Community.”

The website bills this development as an “all-inclusive, 55-plus senior living community” that “is home to those who relish living a luxurious lifestyle, complete with 24/7 service, resort-style dining, and lavish accommodations.”

Stamey said the developer is Cameron General Contractors and the utility contractor installing the sewer is Wright Excavating. 

“The work included relocating a section of the existing MSD sewer that crossed through the center of the property to a route around the exterior of the property, within the DOT road right of way,” Stamey said. “There is a NCDOT encroachment in place for this work. There also is a small section of sewer extension.”

Stamey had good news on the completion date.

“Work is anticipated to be completed in a few weeks,” he said.

Got a question? Send it to John Boyle at  jboyle@avlwatchdog.org or 828-337-0941.