Ever since this sidewalk's wooden planks began buckling, it has been taken out of commission. That was, I think, over a year ago. In the photo, you can see where the fence begins.
On 7/22/13, the City of Lowell told me, "This bridge is owned by Enel. The latest status update they gave us is that they have received bids for the work. The prices are higher than they thougth they'd be. We (City, UML, MCC and NPS) have requested that Enel bring a schedule for the work to the next monthly status meeting.
The short answer to your question is that we don't know when it will be fixed."
On 7/25/13, Enel Green Power said, "Enel Green Power North America is working on a plan for the repair of the sidewalk, but has encountered some delays. The final repair plan will be determined through a collaborative effort between our company and the City of Lowell.
We closed the sidewalk for public safety and did provide means for pedestrians to cross the street to the other sidewalk. However, we certainly understand the inconvenience of the arrangement for those who frequently use the route; but we will maintain this set-up as it is the safest option at this time. Please note that this solution is temporary until the sidewalk can be replaced.
I am happy to forward you a final plan for the sidewalk replacement as soon as it is available. We do apologize for the inconvenience."
While I understand that these things tend to drag on, it's frustrating, and the chain-link fence is just another visual blight. Further, I've noticed that pedestrians who need to stay on that side of the road will not cross to use the opposite sidewalk, but rather just walk in the street.