2023 city elections
Bike Fort Collins sent all candidates in the 2023 City Election a short questionnaire to allow them to introduce themselves and provide their positions on proximate bicycle and active transportation-related issues. While BFC cannot endorse or support a specific candidate, we are happy to share their responses to foster more informed voting decisions this year.
Emily Francis – CITY COUNCIL, DISTRICT 6
Question: Do you regularly ride a bicycle? If so, what kind of riding do you do?
Answer: Yes! I bike for leisure and recreation including road and mountain biking. I recently got an e-bike and have been enjoying the extra distance I can go around town. I also raced collegiate cycling for CSU and PSU (Portland State University).
Question: Given Fort Collins’s bicycle friendliness, what City bike amenity (i.e. what bike trail, or bikeway, maintenance stations, etc.), element of bicycle infrastructure, or bicycle program is your favorite, or (if you ride) that you use most regularly?
Answer: I bike on a mixture of trails (dirt and paved), city bike lanes, and low stress bikeways. Our City has great connectivity for riders of different abilities and preferences. I enjoy the maintenance stations and they have really come in handy a few times!
ACTIVE MODES PLAN
The City’s most current Active Modes Plan combines and updates the City’s 2011 Pedestrian Plan and 2014 Bicycle Plan as well as incorporating micromobility devices such as scooters and skateboards.
Question: What should be the City’s role in supporting (including funding) active modes of transportation as a safe, affordable, efficient and convenient travel option for people of all ethnicities, ages and abilities?
Answer: Providing safe routes and transit opportunities that are accessible and encourage travel options that work 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.
Question: What role do you see active transportation playing in City’ ability to achieve its goal and reduce carbon emissions by 80% by 2030 (vs. 2005 levels), on its way to carbon neutrality by 2050?
Answer: Transportation is a key and vital part to reaching our climate goals. With a significant portion of carbon emissions coming from vehicle miles traveled, alternative transportation has to be part of the solution.
Significant areas of our local community have gaps or intersections and areas that need improvement as it relates to safe bicycling and walking infrastructure. In addition to being a safety hazard, they discourage residents from these activities, as a recently completed Multi-modal Index also highlights. Bike Fort Collins has begun to feature some of these ‘opportunities’ on our website as Intersection/Facility Focuses, as well as made presentations to the city’s Bicycle Advisory Committee and Transportation Board.
Question: How would you approach these opportunities and other infrastructure gaps relative to bicycle safety?
Answer: There are areas of town that don’t connect well or have bicycle friendly streets that ensure safety and comfort. Particularly areas of town that were built prior to present day best practices, including many parts of District 6. It is important to have a complete picture of where infrastructure is lacking and prioritize improvements based on safety, equity, and accessibility.
FORT COLLINS BIKE PARK
Bike Fort Collins is a partner in an initiative started by our peer organization, Overland Mountain Bike Association, to bring a Bike Park to the City of Fort Collins. While Fort Collins is the progressive and bicycle friendly city that it is, many residents have to travel to places like Boulder (see Valmont Bike Park) to access such an amenity. In surveying the community for input during the 2020 Parks & Rec 10-Year Master Planning process, if ‘Mountain Bike Courses’ hadn’t been listed separately from ‘Bike Park’ (as they are contained within Bike Parks), the combined category would have been among the top-four identified/desired amenities by the community. See survey results.
Question: Do you support the planning and construction of a Bike Park for the Fort Collins community? Why or why not?
Answer: Yes, I think looking at an array of options to find the best location would be necessary. Ensuring accessibility, equity, environmental impacts, and other factors would need to be considered. It would be important to have youth at the table to gain their insight and perspective.
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