2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Noah Hutchison, Councilmember District 2

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from Noah Hutchison, Councilmember District 2.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

QUESTIONS IN BOLD AND ANSWERS IN REGULAR TEXT:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

Absolutely!

If so, where is your favorite place to ride?

I love riding up the Poudre Canyon and back from here in Midtown.  Can’t think of a better ride but I ride everywhere.

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

Infrastructure. This is the most bike friendly city I have ever lived in and it’s amazing, but there are areas of town that lack the basic infrastructure needs for citizens to bike safely and enjoy the quality of life individuals in other areas of town experience.

Education.  While many people understand the bikeways of Fort Collins, many do not.  As a result, this create a barrier for people to have individual or family experiences on a bike in our city.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ages and abilities?

I believe the City of Fort Collins should support transit in this way for every person as a function of local government.  I feel the incorporation of the transit master plan and more into the City Plan was a good integration step in this direction.

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.  

There always need to be a balance when it comes to decisions for paid public parking.  Citizens should be able to engage in basic functions of our city without having to pay for a parking spot.  However, paid parking is a necessary component of a city in balancing economic and environmental priorities as well as for the practical fact that the city does not always own the land where parking garages and other structures are (i.e. civic parking center downtown).

Vision Zero

The Transportation systems section of our new City Plan draft refers to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.  

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting, implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

I think this could be a beneficial plan for us to pursue as a city.  I’d be most interested in what the citizens think. It would obviously need to go through our normal processes and be beneficial across the board for our city.

If so, what should that role be?

It seems the city would be the driver if they pursued Vision Zero.  However, just like anything we do, collaboration and communication would be key to achieving this goal.  This is partnering with our citizens and the businesses/organizations in our city they lead.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012), currently under consideration in the State legislature?

I support the Distracted Driving Bill.  I believe there are a number of individuals who use their phones every day while driving.  While many would not like this because of the perceived inconvenience it would cause, I value people and the safety of people is for sure on the line when someone is using their phone in a distracting way while driving.

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in local bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they discourage residents from these activities.

How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

I would continue to support the areas we know lack infrastructure.  I can personally think of areas right now as someone who bikes all around Fort Collins as I prepare for triathlons.  They most certainty would have to be prioritized but then addressed is a common sense and cost-effective way. People love biking in Fort Collins so I would want to continue to maintain this opportunity for every individual as we continue to grow as a community.

2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Emily Gorgol, Councilmember District 6

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from Emily Gorgol, Councilmember District 6.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

QUESTIONS IN BOLD AND ANSWERS IN REGULAR TEXT:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

Yes! I bike to work, for leisure and recreation (mostly in the Spring/Summer/Fall). I also raced collegiate for CSU and PSU (Portland State University).

If so, where is your favorite place to ride?

Along the Horsetooth Dams out to Masonville.

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

Connectivity/Infrastructure. There are some areas of town that don’t connect well or have bicycle friendly streets to ensure safety and comfort.

Cost- Although we have great cycling advocate groups and businesses that help reduce cost burden, cost is still a barrier to bicycling.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ages and abilities?

Providing safe routes and transit opportunities that are accessible and encourage travel options for all residents. In addition, working with and understanding the barriers that community members face when trying to use alternative modes of transportation to better align infrastructure and services. The city does a great job promoting cycling through events (bike to work day, etc) and safe routes to school.

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.  

Yes, it can help recoup costs and may encourage use of other modes of transportation.

Vision Zero

The Transportation systems section of our new City Plan draft refers to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.  

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting, implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

Yes.

If so, what should that role be?

This is a local and regional and will need many partners to support and work towards this goal. The city can act as a convener and collaborator as well as provide the platform for reporting.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012), currently under consideration in the State legislature?

I support this bill. Drivers should not be using their phones while driving, it is too dangerous.

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in local bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they discourage residents from these activities.

How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

The updated City Plan and Master Transit plan have outlined areas of improvement to support bicycling and walking infrastructure. I would work with community members to ensure that we are prioritizing the gaps and addressing the issues in an equitable way so all residents have access to safe opportunities.

2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Joe Somodi, Councilmember District 1

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from Joe Somodi, Councilmember District 1.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

QUESTIONS IN BOLD AND ANSWERS IN REGULAR TEXT:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

I love riding my bike! One of my primary motivations for moving to Fort Collins was the outdoor lifestyle. Being able to bike as often as possible is important to me. After we moved to our home near Vine and Timberline, I was disturbed by how disconnected we were from the rest of the community. I tried to become comfortable with the commute into Old Town, but have found travel on Vine too dangerous. After an inquiry to the city staff, I learned that we are at least five years out from realizing full connectivity of bike trails in our community. Since that time, I’ve tried to get comfortable commuting on Vine, but the volume of traffic and narrow shoulder prohibit safe bicycling. I regularly ride my bike around Fort Collins, but I feel safer transporting my bicycle into the center of the City in my vehicle to avoid the dangerous trip down Vine Street. This awareness has motivated me to elevate improvements in bicycle connectivity throughout Fort Collins and its neighboring communities.

If so, where is your favorite place to ride?

My favorite places to ride are the Spring Creek and the Poudre River Trails. I find them (particularly the Poudre River Trail), meditative on a warm summer evening. I also really enjoy the area around Horsetooth Reservoir, and have managed to ride all the paved trails in that area. They are truly one of the highlights of living in Fort Collins. In good weather months, I regularly ride the dedicated bike trails. On occasion, I take my bike on mountain bike trails on the perimeter of town. I am increasing my capabilities on more and more challenging terrain.

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

Safety and Connectivity

While many in Fort Collins have easy, safe access to bicycle paths, lanes, etc., many still lack connectivity to safe options for riding a bike on a daily basis. I think there is still plenty of room for improvement to ensure that Fort Collins becomes even more bikeable than it is today.

Safety is the primary concern. Although paved trails transverse high traffic areas, but there are gaps in dedicated space for bikers. More emphasis must be placed on driver awareness of bikers/bike lanes. As the city grows I believe there is more work that can be done to make Fort Collins the best and safest place to be on a bicycle. Programs like Safe Routes to School is a program that offers opportunity to build on for the rest of the community.

The sense of community around bicycling is one of the great strengths of Fort Collins. It is perhaps the most uniquely identifying characteristic of our city.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ages and abilities?

The transportation system in Fort Collins is in desperate need of improvement. Bus schedules, routing and frequency are a serious concern for students, employees, and the aging population. They would likely use the system if it were available, affordable and convenient. MAX has proven to be a huge success, and could be expanded along with the trail system, availability of shared/rental bikes across the city, and education campaigns.

Making Fort Collins more bike, bus and walking friendly, will be a significant contribution to improving community health and the achievement of the important goals laid out in the city’s Climate Action Plan.

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.

I believe that the issue of paid public parking is an important component of the overall transportation plan. The City must decide where and how to locate paid parking. Area businesses, revenue streams and traffic congestion must be considered in the ultimate placement. I am still considering the options and gathering more information, public input, and data on what the best long-term options are for the City.

Vision Zero

The Transportation Systems section of our new draft City Plan refers to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting, implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

Absolutely! The goal of zero injuries and deaths to pedestrians and bicyclists should be a top priority for the City of Fort Collins.

If so, what should that role be?

The City of Fort Collins should be a leader in local and regional efforts to achieve the objectives of Vision Zero. I believe the City can provide leadership in this role by leveraging its existing human capital and expertise in the local non-profit sector, bicycling clubs, etc. One important aspect of the City’s role should be to maintain efficiency among the various departments of City government such as Police, Transportation Planning, and Parks and Recreation. As a member of the City Council, I would also work to secure funding for the implementation of new safety measures through existing grants from state and federal agencies. I would encourage transparency in all aspects of this process – from the planning of annual goals to the implementation of new safety strategies and reporting of annual achievements and missed opportunities. Additionally, I would like to see statistics publicly reported in newspapers, Facebook, and other media to ensure the community is aware of the status of the program. The status of community safety must be communicated to the widest possible audience.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012), currently under consideration in the State legislature?

I am in full support of the hands-free regulation outlined in this bill. Similar to the Vision Zero commitment outlined above, I believe bicycle and pedestrian safety should be a top priority to our growing population. Driving while distracted by phones and other handheld technology is simply unacceptable and requires firm regulation and enforcement/penalties to stop injuries and deaths.

I have a close friend who was hit by a distracted driver while he was on a bicycle. The incident has been life-changing for him and those close to him.

As outlined in SB 19-012, I believe the problems related to distracted driving will only get worse if we don’t establish strict guidelines now. Using hand-held devices while driving is a primary offense. I am aware of studies that clearly demonstrate the negative impact of distracted driving (up to 8 times higher risk of being involved in an accident). I believe this bill is a good step in the right direction, and one that will bring increased public awareness to this important issue. A weakness in the bill is that talking on hands-free devices, while safer, still results in distracted driving and an increase in vehicular accidents. However, I recognize banning all mobile conversations is unlikely and enforcement of this would be nearly impossible.

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in transport options as well as bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they discourage residents from these activities.

How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

All neighborhoods deserve safe access to reliable infrastructure – including bicycling and walking. I am in full support of expanding the infrastructure to bring accessible bicycling and walking to every neighborhood in our city. Our city is growing and that is our current reality. Managing growth to enhance the lives of all in our community is one of the key pillars of my platform. I advocate for a city budget that will keep pace with existing and future growth.

Improving infrastructure requires thoughtful community consultation, planning and sufficient funding. Identifying high priority infrastructure needs in and around existing neighborhoods is an important step in addressing this problem. I would advocate for the implementation of rigid standards for all future neighborhood development that include incorporation of safe bicycle options, such as streets with bike lanes or bike paths parallel to sidewalks.

2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Julie Pignataro, Councilmember District 2

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from Julie Pignataro, Councilmember District 2.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

QUESTIONS IN BOLD AND ANSWERS IN REGULAR TEXT:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

Yes.

If so, where is your favorite place to ride?

Around my neighborhood with my son, the Power Trail, Spring Creek Trail, and Poudre River Trail.

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

Safety on the roads and weather.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ages and abilities?

The City needs to take a leading role in how we transform our transportation needs. It is imperative that when doing any sort of transportation planning the city and its staff consider the different options for all of our travelers despite what they are using to travel and also keeping one eye into the future for what other options may become available.

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.  

As our city gets larger, paid public parking will become a reality. I do support it as a way to encourage alternate forms of transportation but I am also well aware how annoying it can be. What needs to happen in tandem with paid public parking, though, is plenty of other options to get to one’s destination.

Vision Zero

The Transportation systems section of our new City Plan draft refers to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.  

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting, implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

This seems like a great idea but it would appear that the jury is still out on if it is working or not. The City of Fort Collins should definitely take this plan into consideration and learn from Denver. There is a part of me that is thinking, “Why would you need a plan such as this to commit to zero traffic fatalities? Shouldn’t that be a goal always?”

If so, what should that role be?

To expand on that, I think that in any transportation decisions, alternative forms need to be considered and safety should be a top priority. We should be looking at fatalities and the patterns of where and when they occur on our roads, and tackle those challenges first. As alluded to above, I don’t think that a formal plan should be necessary to make this a top priority for our community.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012), currently under consideration in the State legislature?

I think that the issues this bill are trying to solve are real but that our elected officials need to take a close look at how successful these bills have been in other states as well as if they are unintentionally, but inherently, discriminatory. The first offense seems fairly steep for those on a limited income – why not make the first offense a warning with a coupon for one of the hands free devices for those with older cars?  

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in local bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they discourage residents from these activities.

How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

The city needs to systematically and logically look at the network (or lack thereof) of alternative forms of transportation and start to attach the pieces where the web that fall short. This will take time, but if done properly the result would be amazing.

2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Wade Troxell, Mayor

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from Wade Troxell, Mayor.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

QUESTIONS IN BOLD AND ANSWERS IN REGULAR TEXT:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

Yes and I would like to ride my bike for recreation and sometime on my daily business routine. I would like to ride my bicycle more.

If so, where is your favorite place to ride?

Long View trail is my new favorite! Mason Trail is my regular favorite.

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

Seamless integration of multimodal transportation systems with safe routes to everywhere with a goal of zero fatalities.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ages and abilities?

City planning and its role in transportation system integration is critical for safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel for all ages and abilities.

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.

Yes, we need revenue to support the City’s multimodal transportation systems.

Vision Zero

The Transportation systems section of our new City Plan draft refers to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting, implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

Transportation systems are undergoing systemic changes. During these changes, I would like to see the City adopt Vision Zero.

If so, what should that role be?

It should begin discussions to have it be a component of the City’s Master Transportation Plan.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012), currently under consideration in the State legislature?

I need to learn more about this legislation and request an evaluation to establish a policy position by the City Council’s Legislative Policy Review Committee.

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in local bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they discourage residents from these activities.

How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

City Council has aggressively been addressing and currently funding these gaps including meeting the our Congressional Delegation and US DOT. I am interested in Vision Zero and the implication that more needs to be done and when.

2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Lori Brunswig, Councilmember District 6

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from Lori Brunswig, Councilmember District 6.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

QUESTIONS IN BOLD AND ANSWERS IN REGULAR TEXT:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

No, I don’t bike regularly anymore. I biked everywhere and have all
my life until about eight years ago. My kids and I biked together in the
neighborhood and Rolland Moore Park and then following Spring
Creek to the Poudre River Trail when they were young. Since then, I
have tried riding north on my bike from my house (Ridgewood and
Stuart) which requires riding on Shields St. or on Taft Hill Road.
Both routes are very busy and I felt very unsafe. I also don’t like
breathing the car emissions.

If so, where is your favorite place to ride?

I loved the bike trails in Rolland Moore Park. My kids and I would
ride through the park and then east to Dairy Queen and back. As
the kids got older, we would ride down the Poudre River Trail and
back.

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

One barrier for me is my concerns about riding in a small bike lane
along a busy street. The other barrier is the lack of ways to bike
north and south that don’t require being on a busy street and
breathing vehicle emissions.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe,
affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all
ages and abilities?

It is critical that the City is involved in providing a way that people
of any ability have transit options available to them. We need to
step up as a City and fund these options from better bike lanes to additional buses. We need to reduce the number of cars on the roads to reduce accidents and protect our air quality.

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.

Yes, we need public parking but we would not need as much if the
City provided better ways for citizens to get around in Fort Collins
other than driving a vehicle everywhere.

Vision Zero

The Transportation systems section of our new City Plan draft refers
to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based
on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a
Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting,
implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

Yes

If so, what should that role be?

If the City doesn’t take a formal role supporting, implementing, and
reporting on Vision Zero then who would this be? The City needs to
back this idea and be willing to implement the plan and track and
report its progress. Safer streets benefit everyone.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012),
currently under consideration in the State legislature?

I support this bill. I am continually seeing vehicles where the driver
is texting. Many times, these people are young but over the age of
18 so to just restrict drivers using cell phones under 18, is not very
helpful. This bill will save the lives of other drivers but especially
protect pedestrians and bikers from injuries.

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in local bicycling
and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they
discourage residents from these activities.

How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

Yes, there are some extremely dangerous roadways in town where
riding a bike or walking is not safe. And, these areas are in places
where you would likely see a high use of bikes, such as near CSU.
For instance, along Shields, north of Prospect and Taft Hill, north of
Prospect are very dangerous roadways for bikes and pedestrians.
I’m not an expert on transportation but more funds need to be used
in these areas to create safer lanes for bikes and walkers. It needs
to have a higher priority for funding and I will push for this, if
elected.

2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Glenn E. Haas, Councilmember District 1.

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from Glenn E. Haas, Councilmember District 1.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

QUESTIONS IN BOLD AND ANSWERS IN REGULAR TEXT:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

No, not regularly

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

No bikes lanes or trails in NE District 1, we are disconnected from the City system and it is dangerous to ride on the streets in this area.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ages and abilities?

Builders should be responsible for providing trails and bikes lanes in their development. The City should be a principle provider of transit.

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.

Yes, users should pay a fee for the service and privilege.

Vision Zero

The Transportation systems section of our new City Plan draft refers to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting, implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

I need to become informed on this topic. Sorry but I cannot provide a well informed response.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012), currently under consideration in the State legislature?

I need to become informed on this topic. Sorry but I cannot provide a well informed response.

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in local bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they discourage residents from these activities.

How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

Builders should be held responsible for new subdivisions and then City Streets plan must include and address as the budget is available.

2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Kristin Stephens, Councilmember District 4

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from Kristin Stephens, Councilmember District 4.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

QUESTIONS IN BOLD AND ANSWERS IN REGULAR TEXT:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

I did until my bike was stolen.

If so, where is your favorite place to ride?

Spring Creek Trail, and around the neighborhood with my kids.

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

  1. Lack of bike infrastructure, and low stress routes
  2. People being uncomfortable with biking, e.g. don’t understand traffic rules, don’t have the right equipment, or don’t know how to access trails

I know you only asked for 2, but I think affordability is also an issue. Bikes, and helmets can be expensive for working families.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ages and abilities?

I believe providing transit opportunities and safe routes across our city is a core function of city government.

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.  

I think we should investigate more paid public parking. We don’t want to inhibit economic health, but we should recoup some of our costs.

Vision Zero

The Transportation systems section of our new City Plan draft refers to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.  

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting, implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

I think this would be a great plan to pursue, and I would support this.

If so, what should that role be?

I think the city would need many partners to achieve Vision Zero. So the city would need to be a convener and collaborator. Ultimately, the city would be responsible for creating the infrastructure to support this vision, and the city would like be reporting progress to the public on a city website.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012), currently under consideration in the State legislature?

I am in favor of this bill, and believe people should not use handheld phones while driving; it is just too dangerous.

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in local bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they discourage residents from these activities.

How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

I believe we have identified some of these gaps, and we need to prioritize them. We need to make sure we have safe routes to schools, and we also need to make sure that we are adding this infrastructure in an equitable way across the city.

2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Fred Kirsch, Councilmember District 6

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from Fred Kirsch, candidate for Councilmember of District 6.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

QUESTIONS IN BOLD AND ANSWERS IN REGULAR TEXT:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

Yes. I’m more of a walker though.

If so, where is your favorite place to ride?

I ride around Old Town mostly, as a commuter.

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

I don’t really know. Maybe connections in the southeast? Knowledge of the best routes through town? I know that bike theft sucks! I look forward to working with Bike Fort Collins and others to improve biking and walking in town.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ages and abilities?

Transfort should strive for the goal of “getting people where they want to be, when they want to be there.” Transfort should be built out as a grid system with simple and easy routes: The Prospect route, the Mulberry route, the Shields route, etc. You shouldn’t have to go through CSU to take a straight road across town. Transfort should have shorter head times and longer hours. The busses should be electric. Maybe ride-share can be incorporated to address the first/last mile challenge. The fare should be a dollar or free. Free on any “BRT” routes. There are reduced price passes for income qualified folks right?

I’ve heard of problems with dial-a-ride and para-transit. I need to work with those constituents to discover their needs and wants and work towards solutions.

How are we gonna pay for this? Maybe we should create a Northern Colorado RTD funded through property tax.  

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.  

Sure, as long it is a net revenue gain for the City. I don’t think it will reduce driving or change any behavior.

Vision Zero

The Transportation systems section of our new City Plan draft refers to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.  

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting, implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

I thought we were doing this is conjunction with CDOT. We should be doing it.

If so, what should that role be?

The role laid out in the annual traffic safety report makes sense to me, but I am always open to learn more about it and explore opportunities for improvement.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012), currently under consideration in the State legislature?

The bill makes sense to me.

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in local bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they discourage residents from these activities. How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

If we are not doing this already, I would first want to survey the area residents to see if this is a priority in the local infrastructure and I want data about the gap area of concern. Is it a highly used and dangerous corridor? Is it never used because there is a better walking/biking route? After collecting data we can prioritize projects for completion. One thing that always bugged me is the disappearing bike lanes right when you need them the most, at dangerous intersections. How many bike/car accidents have occurred at Prospect and Shields? I’d rather not have a bike lane on a busy road then have one that just vanishes at the intersections.

2019 Candidate Questionnaire: Michael Pruznick, Mayor

As a heads up, this election will be mail only. By March 18 all registered voters will be mailed their ballots and will need to be returned to the City Clerk by 7 p.m. on April 2. 

All voters will be electing a new mayor, and voters in Districts 2, 4 and 6 will be electing representatives. In addition to those elections, voters will be presented with ballot and financial issues, or initiated, referred ordinances and/or resolutions. 

As your local bicycling nonprofit, Bike Fort Collins feels informed voters are an important mechanism to support safe enjoyable roads for ALL cyclists in our community. Each election year there are candidates for both local offices and local ballot measures that could have some impact upon our bicycling environment. With the objective of educating voters on local candidates views towards bicycling, we’ve sent a short questionnaire to this years candidates. The questions and responses are below are from mayoral candidate Michael Pruznick.

Bike Fort Collins cannot take any official position endorsing candidates, this is information for you to potentially consider when making your own decisions.

Questions in bold and answers in regular text:

Do you regularly ride a bicycle?

Not any more, too unsafe, too much congestion.

If so, where is your favorite place to ride?

Pruznick lives along the Remington Low Stress Bikeway. Pruznick used to ride the loop from his home to the Fossil Creek Trail to the Mason Trail to the Spring Creak Trail to the Power Trail and back home.

What do you feel are the top two barriers to bicycling in Fort Collins?

Weather and safety.

What should be the City’s role in supporting transit as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ages and abilities?

Pruznick’s philosophy is that government exists to protect and promote the general welfare by honoring human and environmental rights. Pruznick strongly believes in transportation options and is a long-time supporter of bikes, e-bikes, 4-wheel e-bikes, Segways, street legal solar powered electric golf carts, and more.

Pruznick believes all forms of travel should be safe and efficient, and that infrastructure should be designed to minimize conflicts between different travel types.

Do you support paid public parking? Please explain your reasoning.

Pruznick supports a mix of parking options, including paid and free. Pruznick believes in each rate class paying its fair share. Pruznick doesn’t support taxpayer funded free parking for downtown business when other businesses are required to provide privately funded parking for their customers. On the other hand, parking for government public engagement events should be free.

Vision Zero

The Transportation systems section of our new City Plan draft refers to developing a safety enhancement action plan for all modes based on the City’s commitment to Vision Zero. Denver has adopted a Vision Zero action plan including mandatory progress reporting.

Should the City of Fort Collins have a formal role supporting, implementing, and reporting on Vision Zero?

Yes.

If so, what should that role be?

A commitment to update street and development standards so that the new growth coming to north east Fort Collins meets Vision Zero design standard.

Distracted Driving

What is your opinion of the ,Distracted Driving Bill (SB 19-012) currently under consideration in the State legislature?

Data shows clearly that multi-tasking, not the hand held device, is the problem. Pruznick supports a two fold solution. 1) Priority based drivers’ education. Think about this quote from the movie Sully, “No matter what happens never stop flying the airplane.” Teaching people to drive first, talk second will provide a better solution. This approach addresses all distractions, not just the hand held device distraction. 2) Stiffer penalties for at fault accidents. Probation and apology videos for vehicular manslaughter is unacceptable. As long as there is no meaning penalty for killing with a car, the killing will continue.

Infrastructure

Significant areas of our local community have gaps in local bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to the safety hazard they discourage residents from these activities. How would you approach filling in those infrastructure gaps?

Pruznick would look for the Transportation Board and Bicycle sub-committee to work with staff to develop needed updates to development codes to ensure that these concerns are eliminated from new development and a prioritized list of issues to address within existing infrastructure. It would then be council’s job to update codes as soon as possible and to fund improvement projects. Pruznick recognizes alternative transportation as an equal with traditional transportation and would ensure equal support in the budgeting process.

Safe Routes to School: Fall Semester Wrap-up

Fall Semester Wrap-up

Safe Routes to School programming wrapped up the Fall semester last week at Johnson Elementary School! This semester, SRTS reached 2,000 students at 13 different schools in Fort Collins, and checked 1,282 bikes for any maintenance issues thanks to support from Recycled Cycles, Peloton, Trek, Brave New Wheel, VeloFix, Homeward Alliance Bike Repair Team, Joseph Moore, Stuart Culp, John Byers, and the UC Health bicycle emergency response team made up of Lizzie, Drew, Zach and Kip. 
 

After School Bike Club

Thanks to funding from the FoCo Fondo Fest, put on by Zack and Whitney Allison, and Jake Arnold, Safe Routes to School was able to resume Bike Club at Lincoln Middle School for the Fall semester. Over 15 students attended the Bike Club, who, over a four-week span, jelled into a well-lubed team of cyclists riding 15 miles on the last day! Students ranged from not knowing how to ride a bike on day one to very experienced riders. No matter their ability, students got to enjoy an after-school club that involved a healthy activity in a safe, welcoming space. We can’t wait for a Spring Club, and hopefully additional funding for more clubs in more schools.
 

Walking Club

Thanks to Rose Samaniego, SRTS Instructor and Master Naturalist, a walking club was started at Putnam Elementary. Students in this club learned about nutrition, hydration, proper foot wear and clothing. They were also taught ways to walk in any sort of weather and how to be a safe walker (how to cross a street and what to watch out for when walking). Club sessions start by walking around the school yard, and then venturing out for a mile. By the end of the sessions, students were walking 3 to 4 miles! We can’t wait to continue this program to help more students. 
 

Union Pacific Foundation Grant

We are excited to announce that we received a 20k grant from Union Pacific Foundation that will encourage safe behaviors and prevent accidents through education and awareness, particularly projects which focus on rail, driver, bike, and pedestrian safety through our SRTS program. This funding will allow for the possible expansion of SRTS programming to more high schools in Fort Collins and to schools outside the city limits. 

What’s Next?

Watch for next semesters expanded schedule on school rotation, plus information on after-school clubs, bike field trips and more. Safe Routes to School programming depends on donations and volunteers in order to operate. Consider volunteering or donating today by contacting Dot at dotdickerson@msn.com. 

Support Bike Fort Collins this Colorado Gives Day!

We have some exciting news…

For the first time in our history, Bike Fort Collins will be participating in Colorado Gives Day!

What is Colorado Gives Day? 

Colorado Gives Day is an annual statewide movement to celebrate and increase philanthropy in Colorado through online giving. For the ninth year, Community First Foundation and FirstBank are partnering to present Colorado Gives Day. On December 4, all around Colorado, community members and businesses will come together to support nonprofits across the state. 24 hours of supporting organizations who make great things happen in your community. 

Why support Bike Fort Collins? 

Our mission is to get more bikes on safer streets, all while advocating for equality and inclusion in cycling. From educating youth through Safe Routes to School programming; to providing access to bicycles through the Pace Bike Share; to hosting no-drop group rides; and through our grant-funded programming that allows us to go into lower-income communities to provide free helmets, lights, education and bicycle repair, Bike Fort Collins is for all cyclists, no matter their ability, income level or age. 

We can’t do what we do without support, and that is why this Colorado Gives Day, we are asking for any amount of donation so that we can continue to fulfill our mission. 

Additionally, we are also looking to expand our Safe Routes to School programming outside of the limits of Fort Collins, and need monetary support to do so.

To schedule your donation BEFORE December 4, visit our Colorado Gives Day page here

Thank you so much for your support, and ride on.   

 

Safe Routes to School: Always (Safely) Rolling

The Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Program isn’t just busy in the school year, the summer is also a crazy time of year as we strive to get more kids on bikes safely! Read on to learn more about all we were up to this summer.  

Summer School: Preschool Safe Routes

This summer SRTS provided safety lessons to preschoolers in the Fullana program at Bauder and Beattie elementary schools. Eight students became new riders during this three-day program.

SRTS also spent time with preschoolers and students up to 10-years-old at Teaching Tree Early Childhood Learning Center. For the older group of students, they were taken on bike rides along the Poudre Trail, with a mandatory stop for rock skipping and toe dipping. The younger kids stayed on campus and rode balance bikes, stopped at stop signs and practiced looking both ways when crossing in the crosswalk.

Youth Creating Places

New this summer: Colorado State University’s Institute for the Built Environment and Urban Lab implemented the first ever tactical urbanism group specifically designed for students ages 12 and older.

What is tactical urbanism? It’s a practice that simulates how most cities are built. A piece-by-piece process that is especially popular in developing nations.  

What is the Institute for the Built Environment? IBE creates meaningful projects, builds team alignment and supports future leaders.

This summer program, titled “Youth Creating Places” aimed to inspire young minds to explore the city-scape, identify locations for improvements, plan some changes, design them, and finally build their own unique neighborhood ‘pop-up.’ The group of 17 succeeded in making improvements to Soft Gold Park.

In partnership with SRTS, children learned the importance of transportation in the project. One week of the program was dedicated to bike skills, safety and learning the rules of the road on the road. Along with the learning, the riders got to stop at the Poudre River for rope swinging and swimming.

Cycle hard play hard.

Hickory Park Celebration

In June, SRTS, along with the City of Fort Collins, Kaiser Permanente, La Familia, Create Places, Bike Fort Collins, and Larimer County to host the first ever “Open Streets” along Hickory Street in north Fort Collins. This event celebrated the partnerships in this neighborhood, the opening of the first Pace Bike Share station in this neighborhood, and the Active Living Program provided by Bike Fort Collins and Kaiser Permanente. SRTS provided a rodeo for youth during this event.

FoCo Fondofest

On August 4, thanks to Zach and Whitney Allison, and Jake Arnold, over 350 cyclists rode 12 – 100 miles on scenic gravel roads around Larimer and Weld Counties to raise $1,532 for Safe Routes Afterschool Bike Clubs. Special shoutout to the Allison-Arnold team and Source Endurance for the support, and a very fun ride! To learn more about the FoCo Fondofest, visit https://www.focofondo.com/events

Photo by Dion Dolva

SRTS Instructor Gathering

Did you know that Bike Fort Collins has a talented team of 20 trained SRTS instructors? These amazing people work hard during the spring and fall semesters cramming three to four Elementary Schools and four to five Middle Schools into a few short months of decent weather.

After the semester is over, the SRTS instructors deserve a celebration at the lake… which they happily accept.

Interested in Getting Involved?

Learn more about the SRTS program by visiting http://bikefortcollins.org/programs/safe-routes-to-school-2.

Learn more about volunteering by contacting Dot at dotdickerson@msn.com.

Why volunteer? Volunteers enhance the experience for all students and improve the overall success of the program.

Not able to volunteer but want to help fund the SRTS programming and instructors? Consider donating today! Learn more at http://bikefortcollins.org/support-bfc/give.

We are excited to announce… our new logo!

Just like a bike that needs tuning, sometimes an organization needs one too. As Bike Fort Collins looks to grow and provide even more opportunities to get more people on bikes, we thought it was time to spruce up our image a bit.

Why this design? Thanks to local graphic designer Jarad Heintzelman’s creative gears, this logo was created to embody what Bike Fort Collins is: fun, modern and friendly. This design is simple, easy to read and highly adaptable for any situation.

We wanted to showcase that bikes should be approachable, easy to understand, and quite frankly: iconic and fun.

This logo embodies that vision while also allowing for variety, like different bike shapes and colors.

Like what you see? Be on the lookout for new Bike Fort Collins branded shirts and stickers.

In the meantime, we’ll see you on the trail. Happy riding!

Looking Ahead to Big Opportunities and Big Changes for BFC in 2018

IMG_5203

The news has been trickling out for some time now, but in an effort to not crowd out our other exciting December news like our Bohemian Foundation Pharos Grant award, and our end of year fundraising, I held off on making this formal announcement till now. Today, January 5th, is my final day at Bike Fort Collins. In December, I accepted a position in San Jose with California Walks. I’ll be spearheading their vision zero campaign and working to make the south bay safer, healthier, and more sustainable.

I can’t tell you exactly what’s next for Bike Fort Collins regarding succession and leadership. Stay tuned for more on that in the coming weeks, but I wanted to leave folks with a few stray thoughts I have about my tenure and the future of the org and the region.

 

When I arrived in Fort Collins, 13 years ago, it was supposed to be a pit stop. I’d just spent most of my 20s in Chicago, where I’d fallen in love with bikes & transit, urbanism, multiculturalism and activism. Eventually the weather got the better of me- as it gets the better of so many former Chicagoans- and my newfound love of cycling. So I packed up and headed west, in search of my next (warmer) urban adventure.

But that trip stopped short when my Fort Collins recharge accidentally morphed into marriage, parenthood, homeownership, and, eventually, an unlikely career change that allowed me to finally take a public role in a conversation that I’d long felt passionate about.

Just over two years ago, I accepted the position of executive director at Bike Fort Collins and set out to explore three important questions:

  1. What is the role of a bike advocacy nonprofit in a platinum rated bike friendly city, where the city’s own effort to promote bikes is better organized and resourced than the nonprofits’?
  2. How can we call ourselves a bike friendly city at all, when that experience of bike friendliness is so wildly disparate between neighborhood, without asking serious and sometimes uncomfortable questions about root causes and historic inequality?
  3. Why are the neighborhoods and individuals whose health, safety and access to opportunity are so tenuous, also so under-represented in conversations about transportation and the built environment’s impact on health, safety and opportunity.

Meanwhile, along with these lofty existential questions, I was tasked with plotting a course towards long term revenue sustainability for the org. Like so many nonprofits, a succession of volunteer leaders and informal accounting and operating plans had left me with an org with a lot of passion and goodwill, but without a strong brand identity- without a distinct and resonant vision that would sustain our work.

 

This has been a joyous, stressful, challenging, and inspiring couple of years. At the end of it, at the dawn of a new year, we as a city and as an organization have a greater sense of how interconnected the threats to our long term vibrancy and health are. From affordability to growth to transit to pollution to social segregation to immigration and more. Its clearer than ever that real sustainability means not just environmentalism but also social and economic health and justice (what good are bike lanes when the workforce increasingly can’t afford to live close enough to ride to work?)

We’ve asked tough questions of our leaders, our community partners, the public and most importantly, of ourselves. In an era of uncertainty, its increasingly clear that technology alone won’t save us, that Washington won’t save us, that our fate as a community is in our hands, that being engaged in local budgets, in City Plan, in boards and commissions, in local nonprofits, in local and regional elections, is non-negotiable. Even at a moment when Northern Colorado feels relatively prosperous and seemingly insulated from many of the marquee threats in the US in 2018, there are clouds of uncertainty on our horizon. The world our children will inherit is being forged in small ways every day both through our deliberate plans and though inattention to creeping threats. That shouldn’t be frightening, but it should be sobering.

 

A close friend of mine asked me recently what is MY vision for Fort Collins in 20 or 30 years. This conversation was inspired by our divergent views of Elon Musk’s efforts to bring vacuum tube transit to the front range. If I didn’t buy Musk’s vision of salvation through innovation, what did I believe in?

Its not that I don’t believe in innovation. The way we move, communicate, allocate resources, combat disease are changing at a breakneck pace. But I think that history has shown that technological prognostication is a fool’s errand. Technology and culture inevitably zig and zag and have unintended, unforeseeable consequences- some good, some bad. If you ask me my vision of a healthy future city, I won’t spin stories of exotic vehicles or magical healthcare breakthroughs, or new ways to generate power or grow food. Though we will certainly continue to see all of those. I’ll say, simply: my healthy future city is one where the priorities and vision are created collaboratively, by everyone who lives here, not by those who have the most, and therefore have the most to protect. Technology might help us answer questions, but without community engagement and empowerment, without INCLUSIVE leadership, how can we know we’re asking the right questions in the first place?

For me, Bike Fort Collins is not a platform for celebrating or mythologizing bikes as a lifestyle or identity. There are plenty of amazing clubs and teams that convene around “bike culture”. We are dedicated to working with communities and community organizations and asking how active transportation can serve a larger strategy for addressing their specific challenges and reaching their potential. We want to ensure that the countless community members who rely on bikes for transportation and recreation have as much say as the bike nuts do.

On this, my final day at BFC, I look back at my time here and feel we’ve made big advances in our understanding of all of these challenges. As I turn over the keys to the next person lucky enough to steer this organization, I’m confident that they will inherit an org with a strong vision, a healthy financial future, a respected, credible voice, and a critical role in a number of local coalitions working hard to ensure a safer, healthier more inclusive future for Northern Colorado.

I’ve left our board a list of suggestions and priorities that I’m sure they will sort and parse, but I know a few big action items for 2018 will include informing the City Plan process, informing the 2019-2020 FC City budget. and diving into the 2018 midterm elections where there are several impactful local and county races where we think we can both inform candidate platforms and educate the public about where various candidates stand on active transportation and built environment issues.

We will continue to grow our flagship Safe Routes to School program. we will continue to promote and grow our national leading Bike Friendly Business network, we will continue to run the Fort Collins Bike Share as the technology and policies around bike share changes seeming daily, we will continue our direct service programs like our Neighborhood Active Living Plan, Upshift, and Chain Reaction, and we’ll continue to promote our busy calendar of rides and events like the Ride of Silence, RAT Rides, Tour de Farms, Ride with Pride, and of course Tour de Fat. The people who run these programs, and who sit on our board are amazing, talented visionaries and I know they’ll continue to work tirelessly to get more people on bikes, build safer and healthier streets and neighborhoods, and strive for an advocacy platform that is inclusive and empowering of Fort Collinsers of every ability, gender, race, age and identity.

As for me, I am looking forward to a change of scenery and catching my breath. This last two years was a tremendous honor, but running a small nonprofit takes a lot out of you, and my tank was pretty low going in, after years of organizing races and rides and writing about cycling in Fort Collins. It has been tough on my body and spirit, and I look forward to being a smaller part of a larger org and city, where I can continue to learn and grow, but also work on balancing work and life better (and maybe even spend a little more time on the bike).

 

Happy New Year,

 

Chris J Johnson

 

IMG_4543