Q: Does the Waterloo Street Department have a program to raise lid covers up in the street to grade level, such as in the 600 block of Stephen in front of Blessed Sacrament School?
A: Waterloo Waste Management Services is responsible for adjusting manhole levels on city streets. For specific locations, such as the one mentioned by the caller, the city typically waits until frost is out of the ground. The manhole elevation does not change, but in some cases the pavement elevation does experience a little frost heave causing the manhole to appear needing raised. In those cases, the pavement lowers once the frost is out of the ground. Waste Management has put the manhole on Stephen on its list to monitor.
Q: There is no place for pedestrians to walk on La Porte Road, so people have to walk in the street. Can the city do something about providing an option?
A: The city could acquire property and construct sidewalks if the City Council was willing to approve and tax to pay for such a project.
Q: Why aren’t Lantern Square Apartments required to be handicapped accessible?
A: The Americans with Disabilities Act was passed in 1991. Apartments built prior to the ADA were not required to upgrade to present-day building codes unless they undergo major remodeling.
Q: Just east of the Vets’ Park in Gilbertville there are no crows. Is that where the man that trained squirrels is from?
A: We don’t think these special attack squirrels exist. In response to a similar question, the KWWL news director told us a man they interviewed simply made a tongue-in-cheek comment suggesting people train squirrels to chase away crows. He didn’t actually do it.
Q: Before the 1993 movie “Cool Runnings” did Jamaica have a women’s or men’s bobsledding team in the Olympics?
A: That movie was very loosely based on the story of the Jamaican national bobsled team in the 1988 Winter Olympics in Canada. That was the first bobsled team Jamaica ever entered, as far as we can tell.
Q: You frequently have people calling in and saying they don’t have a computer. Can that be in 2018?
A: According to the Pew Research Center, about nine in 10 American adults use the internet and about three-quarters of American adults have broadband internet service at home. But “home broadband adoption varies across demographic groups. Racial minorities, older adults, rural residents and those with lower levels of education and income are less likely to have broadband service at home.”
Q: The speed limit on Highway 63 going under the viaduct is posted at 25 mph. Is this speed for all the time or only when its slippery?
A: The 25 mph speed limit referenced is an advisory speed limit compared to a regulatory speed limit. Regulatory speed limits are set for the maximum speed allowed under ideal driving conditions. Advisory speed signs warn drivers to slow down because of certain situations, like sharp curves in a road. The advisory speed limit noted in the question is there because of possible water on the highway.
Calls are taken on a special Courier phone line at 234-3566. Questions are answered by Courier staff and staff at the Waterloo Public Library.