I wanted to take a minute out of prepping for a busy summer of bike and active living related events and share a quick note about the upcoming city plan update.
But I wanna start by asking a few questions:
Do you value contiguous, protected bike lanes and well developed low stress bike networks?
Do you think transit has an important role to play in leading Fort Collins away from sprawl and congestion and autocentrism?
Do you think smart, sustainable growth and development should be normalized and very low density, car-heavy land use should pay for its own negative environmental, social and economic impact?
Do you think kids should be able to safety ride to neighborhood schools and parks without having to navigate 50mph roads that lack midblock crossings?
Do you think every Fort Collins resident should live within walking distance of healthy food and parks, and within useful transit reach of healthcare, jobs, church, and civic engagement?
Do you think seniors should be able to age in place in walkable ADA accessible neighborhoods that don’t make them choose between staying engaged and giving up driving?
Do you think the working class should have a chance to live in town, and have access to sustainable transportation options, rather than being pushed further and further out of Fort Collins, forcing them to drive to work, adding to congestion, roadwork, parking woes, and the health and safety consequences of driving more and further?
Do you think that all children, regardless or race, class, identity or neighborhood deserve to share our commitment to bike friendly community?
City plan touches all of these concerns, and informs not just how and where we build, but who is welcome, and whos safety matters. Along with transportation and transit plans, city plan is a manifesto for our values as a community and an opportunity to affect the course of Fort Collins for generations to come. These plans, more than proclamations and pronouncements, are how we operationalize (or don’t operationalize) our commitment to safe, healthy, inclusive, and economically vibrant streets and neighborhoods.
We are lucky to have city leadership that values these concerns and is looking to the community to shape this plan. We also know that because people are busy, and because city plans are ill-understood, sometimes the voices who are loudest in these process don’t always represent the diverse needs of Fort Collins.
With all that in mind, Bike Fort Collins will focus heavily on the city, transportation and transit plan updates happening over the next year and a half. And we hope you will too. We’re organizing action teams, strategizing, working to make sure that in every discussion about the future of the city centers around putting people before cars, parks before parking, community before commutes, and advances a vision of more bikes – safe streets and one voice for everyone in Fort Collins who rides a bike.
This Thursday at 4PM, we have a special presentation by Charles Brown, a national bike expert, who will speaking and leading a conversation about centering the planning process on equity.
And next Thursday’s NoCo Bike Show (6:30PM at Wolverine Farm on Willow) will include a conversation with city staff about what the plan updates are, why they matter to us as cyclists, and how we can get involved to affect the outcome.
Theres a lot at stake over the next year and a half of plan updates. We’ll need everyone’s help to keep building the future we deserve.