Kessler Park steps: Photo by Danny Fulgencio

Kessler Park steps: Photo by Danny Fulgencio

The contentious set of steps that connects Edgefield to Canterbury in Kessler Park will be closed and repaired, City Councilman Scott Griggs says.

The steps were built as part of the master plan for Kessler Park in the 1920s, one of several such pedestrian passageways serving the hilly neighborhood. But the steps were damaged by erosion, neglect and vandalism over the decades.

When parents walking their children to the Kessler School began using the passageway again last year, however, adjacent neighbors tried to keep them out. That led to much fighting on the social media site Nextdoor, an appeal to the city attorney and those little fluorescent yard signs reading “Save the Kessler Steps!”

Griggs says the steps will be closed with new barricades and “no trespassing” signs placed at both ends of the steps. That is until the city can find the money to make necessary repairs.

Assistant City Manager Mark McDaniel completed an extensive engineering survey of the area, Griggs says.

From Griggs’ message on the topic:

There is an electrical line, water line, storm water line with open drainage swale, and sewer line within the easement. This 30 feet of easement is very congested.

Some of these utilities are very close to the surface. This will make any repair and restoration very complex.

The full engineering report will be released as soon as next week.