Welcome to Fort Collins, where the routes are made up and accessibility doesn’t matter.
I have been at CSU long enough to see not only every major building on campus, but also every street surrounding it, under construction. I have become familiar with the terrible orange signaling that your easy route to class is interrupted, and I have accepted that the second I become familiar with a building or street, within a couple weeks it will be under construction, to change yet again.
And in a lot of ways, this is exactly what many people are looking for. Fort Collins is a town full of young people who notoriously want the newest and best. We have this image in our heads of glass walls that project the technology that we want and roads that are so smooth they can put you to sleep. And there’s nothing wrong with that; it’s great that we have an image of what we want the places that we spend the most of our money to look like. Unfortunately, it comes at a price.
Financial costs are not all we have to worry about, although it doesn’t take an active imagination to come to the conclusion that construction isn’t cheap. I know that many students weren’t around for the summer when a lot of the construction around Fort Collins was taking place, but for the better part of the hotter months, College Ave. was torn up, obstructing easy routes to small businesses and making an already terrible traffic situation even more awful, not to mention that north and southbound Shields was off limits for a while.
I admit that if even if I really want to go somewhere, say out to eat, but it takes me an hour to get there and I have to go through alleys and side roads just to get to a parking lot that is probably full, I’ll probably take my business elsewhere. Convenience is a cost that small business around campus have to contend with; sure they want everything to be in perfect working condition and they want the roads in front of businesses kept up, but they’re going to lose business if it’s too tedious a process to get in the front door.
Construction is a hassle. It’s loud, annoying and it tries everyone’s patience. It has been said many times that Fort Collins was not designed for the boom in population that it’s experienced, and because of that it is awful to try and get anywhere during rush hour, only made worse by construction.
Maybe there will come a time in which students can walk across campus and not see a building under construction. Maybe there will come a time in which we are no longer inconvenienced by getting in the car. Maybe there will come a time in which we don’t have to see the orange of traffic cones or hear the constant pounding of an active construction site. But I, and probably many students, will not see that day.
I guess I just hope that in the end, it’s worth it.
Collegian Columnist Brittney Jordan can be reached at email@example.com