Hopefully readers are by now familiar with the relatively new efforts in Eagle Rock to tame Colorado Boulevard, ‘Take Back The Boulevard’. I have previously written about ‘Taking Back The Boulevard’ here. The project comes as a culmination of Eagle Rock community groups and residents unhappy with the current dangerous, car-centric street conditions along Colorado Boulevard and seeking to make the street more of a destination than the mini-freeway it resembles today. The initiative is being spearheaded by The Eagle Rock Association. In doing a bit of research I noticed Take Back The Boulevard now has its own website with a clearly defined mission for the project and the website will likely be updated to keep residents informed of meetings and progress being made.
Take a look at the site yourself, http://www.takebacktheblvd.org/
In reading the ambitious goals stated on the site I can’t help but to think of my recent visit to Sweden. While the cities I saw were not perfect, there were cases where cities created comfortable situations for all users– pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists.
Many streets in the downtowns I visited in Sweden had ‘pedestrian priority’. As the blue sign depicts in the picture above the street should be safe enough for children to play soccer. While this kind of treatment is unlikely to surface on Colorado Boulevard it perhaps serves to remind that streets do not need to prioritize cars nor do they need to be used to flush people through neighborhoods. Streets, as the Take Back The Boulevard initiative understands, can serve multiple purposes and contribute to how people act in those spaces. If we slow down cars, provide space for cyclists, add crosswalks, plant trees, provide benches, and create public spaces Colorado may become more of a community living room and destination for all than a speedway for motorists. If Take Back The Boulevard is put to its full potential we can see people stroll, and linger on a safe, pleasant Colorado Boulevard. It can absolutely be attainable, we already have a lot of attractions along Colorado, neighbors that enthusiastically engage with one another, and growing momentum for these kind of ideas.
According to the Take Back The Boulevard site, the first community meeting September 21st from 7-9pm at the 20th Century Women’s Club at 5105 Hermosa Ave. Mark your calender, get involved!