Fort Collins just got a little bit of a European makeover. And we’re not talking tea and crumpets.
Yes, a roundabout. Of the mini variation.
At the intersection of Remington and Laurel, you’ll no longer see traffic lights and idling cars. Instead, you’ll find a circular road that many drivers find to be a conundrum. But, alas, the roundabout has its benefits.
“Roundabouts are generally more efficient in moving traffic,” says Aaron Iverson, Senior Transportation Planner for the City of Fort Collins. “Roundabouts also tend to be safer in general. Since there’s an island, you’ve got to go slow and it reduces any sort of T-bone accident.”
The million-dollar Remington Greenway Project is part of a Transportation Master Plan created in 2011 that implements economic, social, and environmental sustainability, according to the city’s website.
The project also involves creating 5-foot “bulb outs” from the curb line to give pedestrians extra space to stand, buffered bike lanes to protect cyclists, a rain garden to reduce and clean storm water, and pads for future Transfort bust stops.
Where Remington intersects Lake, Pitkin, and Elizabeth, there will now be stop signs. This area was chosen as the best candidate for testing greenways in Fort Collins due to the high volume of pedestrians and bikers.
“The goal is to shift people out of their cars and do more green traveling like biking and walking,” Iverson said.
Already, city bike trails have permanent bike counters underneath the pavement, tracking the number of cyclists that use the paths. The city will be installing a tall eco-totem that will display and track the number of bikers that go by, counting you as you pass. This will be the first eco-totem in Fort Collins.
The city will also be tracking the amount of storm water collected as a measure of success for the project.
“[Remington] is a good test bed for new ideas that we don’t have. Hopefully we’ll be able to expand to a network of greenways for people to use throughout the city,” Iverson said.