New map shines light on Midtown Greenway’s dark spots

MIDTOWN GREENWAY — Volunteers with light meters have charted the darkest spots on the Midtown Greenway, creating an interactive Google map to illustrate where more security might be needed.

The Midtown Greenway Coalition is asking the city to install more lighting and build signage to warn passersby that security cameras are rolling all along the Greenway.

Coalition Executive Director Soren Jensen said security planning started long before early April, when two preteens threw a Molotov cocktail at a biker on the Greenway. Jensen said he occasionally hears about kids standing on bridges and throwing sticks, rocks or eggs at bikers.

Crime along the Greenway is pretty rare, however — Jensen said he hears about one or two muggings each year, out of an estimated 1.5 million trips.

“With that said, we don’t find one or two muggings acceptable,” Jensen said.

Jensen asks bikers to call 911 if they see public intoxication or groups of loitering youth. Muggings tend to involve two or three young people running out and pushing over a biker, he said.

In addition, the Coalition can always use more volunteers for its nightly Trail Watch safety patrols, he said.

“We’re asking everyone who uses the Greenway to help us,” Jensen said.

To raise money for crime prevention and other Greenway efforts, the Coalition is hosting the second annual “Glow Ride” on June 22. Teams raise donations for the nighttime ride, earning glow-in-the-dark T-shirts and bike lights. A post-ride party features live music, food from Bar Louie and beer from New Belgium Brewing. The night also features a free community art festival, with art installations and performances along the Greenway.