Transfort considers second transit line

Students walk onto the bus outside of the Lory Student Center Thursday afternoon. Fort Collins is currently contemplating whether or not to add another Transit line.
Students walk onto the bus outside of the Lory Student Center Thursday afternoon. Fort Collins is currently contemplating whether or not to add another Transit line.

In 2009, as part of a long-term strategic plan, Fort Collins Transfort called for an expansion of services to the community, including the prospect of a second transit line along West Elizabeth Street offering service to CSU.

The corridor along West Elizabeth Street has been identified as a key area of high frequency, according to Kurt Ravenschlag, the Fort Collins city transit manager.

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Because of the abundance of passengers, the buses around campus have been known to not allow people to board the buses at certain stops.

“I have been on buses multiple times when they can’t let any more people on, so people have to wait,” said Tessa Sullivan, sophomore communications major and frequent bus rider.

Transfort planners said they are hoping that the addition of more buses would alleviate traffic on these highly populated routes.

The new transit line would follow the path from Overland, along West Elizabeth Street and through the CSU campus. Ravenschlag said that this corridor has been identified as what might come to be known as “Bus Rapid Transit.”

The strategic plan for Transfort suggests it may be useful to consolidate the services currently along West Elizabeth Street into the “Bus Rapid Transit Corridor,” which would make its way from Overland Trail to the MAX service along the Mesa Corridor.

“The reason why that corridor (of West Elizabeth) was identified was because it is one of the densest residential corridors in our community, primarily from the student housing development,” Ravenschlag said. “There’s a very large traffic pattern from West Elizabeth onto the main campus of CSU that we felt would really benefit from a service like this.”

Transfort said they are hoping that something like this would benefit students of CSU by providing convenient access from the MAX Corridor into Downtown Fort Collins and to the south campus.

As of right now, this idea is in the very early stages. There is currently no funding, meaning that it is currently in its conceptual phase.

In addition to funding, the planners face the challenge of design and how to traverse West Elizabeth Street and move through campus to get to the Mesa Corridor.

“If there’s an opportunity in the near future we may identify some funding to move parts of that corridor along,” Ravenschlag said. “It may not be completed all at once. It may be phased.”

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If this idea is going to come to fruition it would need to be supported by the CSU community, as the buses would be travelling across the campus.

“I think that would be great,” said Lisa Domke, sophomore psychology and history major. “The bus is such a convenient way to get to campus and makes life a lot easier. However, the buses are so crowded that it’s a very hectic and stressful start to the day since it’s hard to be sure that you’ll get to class on time.”

Collegian Writer McKenna Ferguson can be reached at news@collegian.com.