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.
ERIC HAMRICK – CITY COUNCIL, DISTRICT 2
Question: Do you regularly ride a bicycle? If so, what kind of riding do you do?
Answer: Yes, I bike on a regular basis primarily sticking to the hard trail system. I live close to the Power Trail, so my favorite ride is out to Watson Lake along the Poudre Trail. I also like riding out to Boyd Lake using the Power Trail heading south. Utilizing the Spring Creek Trail we ride over to Spring Canyon Park and then head south to Loveland (there has been some great improvements to the trail system).
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: As mentioned above my favorite ride is out to Watson Lake along the Poudre Trail. Trail connectivity is key to me because I’m not a big fan of riding on the roads. I’m supportive and anxious to see improvements and completion of many of the proposed bike trails out to the Greeley/Windsor area.
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: I support an integrated approach to transportation that maximizes the different modes to create efficiency for the user in terms of time, cost, comfort, safety, accessibility and convenience. Expanded public transportation must be funded to ensure that it is integrated with active transportation modes and infrastructure (e.g., bicycle-sharing stations), and connects with all parts of our community. Fort Collins has been among the fastest growing cities in Colorado and in the country. More cars, often exceeding a safe speed, are an increasing safety risk for bikers and pedestrians. We need better traffic enforcement, more effective public transit, more low stress bike routes, and safer sidewalks. I support the goals and objectives of The Vision Zero Action Plan which aims to create safer streets so there are no deaths or serious injuries by 2032. The largest constraint to walkability and bike-ability is not distance, but rather fast moving, multilane vehicular traffic, especially for the young, senior citizens or anyone with a disability.
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: Increased funding in active modes of transportation is critical in supporting air quality goals and in conforming with EPA compliance standards. I support mixed use community design where commercial, residential and retail co-exist and greater density on transit and bike routes. I support the Fort Collins City Council Resolution adopting an interim greenhouse gas emissions goal of 50% below the 2005 baseline by 2026. In a time when negative climate effects (with a high societal cost) are becoming more common, we must not stop looking for ways to lower our greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Lastly, it’s generally well accepted that biking is better for the environment since it produces no pollution and consumes no fossil fuels.
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: As mentioned above I support the goals and objectives of The Vision Zero Action Plan which aims to create safer streets so there are no deaths or serious injuries by 2032. Expanded public transportation must be funded to ensure that it is integrated with active transportation modes and infrastructure (e.g., bicycle-sharing stations), and connects with all parts of our community. Heavy recreational use of our city’s trail system is one of the major challenges facing our programs. This is leading to increased operational and maintenance costs and conflict among the various recreational/users interests (walkers, runners, scooters, skateboards, etc.). I believe that we must increase funding and prioritize active modes of transportation in the face of continued growth and use.
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. Biking is one of the most popular activities in Fort Collins for all ages and skill levels. A bike park is in high demand and would serve the community’s interest by providing a place for social gatherings, family-friendly activities, and recreation accessible to people of all ages and abilities.
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