Longmont’s McIntosh Lake markers are due for a correction

The metal art objects along the sidewalk and trail at McIntosh are intended to be half-mile markers, so that walkers and runners can know the distances they have traveled around the lake. Tuesday, July 12, 2011. (Johnnie St. Vrain/Times-Call)

Hi, Johnnie: The metal art around Lake McIntosh looks great. However, the art along the sidewalk is on the wrong side. They all need to be repositioned to the opposite side of the sidewalk so the north direction sign actually points more or less north instead of south. The art along the trail is on the appropriate side of the trail.

Can you advise who should handle moving the art? The parks department? — Jane

Dear Jane: You want to know what`s ironic about this? The name of the artwork is “Point of View.”

I learned that from Lauren Greenfield, the city`s Art in Public Places administrator. Turns out, it`s the AIPP Commission that would be in charge of moving the artwork. It also turns out that the commission might do just such a thing.

Greenfield said that you`re not the only one who has complained about the apparently misaligned artwork. “Actually, there have been very few complaints,” she told me, “but it feels like it`s something we need to fix.”

So, Thursday night, Greenfield will go before the AIPP Commission with a proposal to make changes to the pieces so they make geographic sense. Greenfield said, “I`m trying to make it be the least amount of work for the artist (Charlotte Zink of Broomfield) … who is still under contract.”

The problem with the public art is perception. “It was designed to be artwork, and the medallions were intended to be distance markers, not an accurate map,” Greenfield said. But “it makes us look like we have no idea what the direction is. You have to know north.”

The artwork was installed this spring. I recall seeing it back in May but not looking closely at the lettering on the “medallions.” So I took a closer look this week and found that your response to them can be determined by your point of view. The art is either:

1) half-mile markers paired with plaques that are representations of those markers around

Each of the metal plates at McIntosh Lake has seven dots representing the location of mileage markers around the lake. The plates include north, south, east and west indicators that represent where the markers can be found in relation to the lake. Tuesday, July 12, 2011. (Johnnie St. Vrain/Times-Call)

the lake;
2) markers intended to convey cardinal directions for walkers and runners.

For those of you who haven`t seen the markers, take a look at the photos. Since the markers face the sidewalk and trail, they don`t always point north. Thus, the confusion.

So, Jane, it looks like the markers will be adjusted. Greenfield said it could happen within the next couple of weeks.

And, remember, whether you`re at McIntosh Lake or Sandstone Ranch, the mountains are to the west.

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