Within these vibrant spaces are custom designed pavement of locally quarried stone. This design feature helps shape a unique and distinctive character for the district. Irregularly spaced linear strips of stone pavement take cues from Native American fabric design while also referencing the “Railroad Era” and the millions of 16’ long steel rail segments needed to build the railroad that helped to create Fort Collins and connect the City with the rest of the world. This linear composition provides the framework for the design to be organized around a 40’ module. This module, imagined as a flexible “kit-ofparts” is designed to seamlessly interlock with other site elements. Micro plazas occur naturally within this matrix creating opportunities for spill-out space for adjacent building program such as café seating, impromptu and organized outdoor performances, and contemporary spaces for temporary program such as farmers’ markets, art fairs, food trucks, semi-permanent cafes, and for events such as football games. The net effect emphasizes the linear character of the site, encourages proper multi-modal circulation, and creates a dynamic large-scale visual rhythm understood at a range of speeds; walking, running, bicycling, hover-boarding, segwaying, bussing, traveling in a car, hot-air- balloon, or passing airplane. Sidewalks and bike lanes are framed by shifting “ecological swaths of groves and high-performance bioswales that clean stormwater. These urban hedgerows of native trees (limbed at 6’ to maintain views) are planted with the density one often finds in a healthy forest. This unique urban planting typology is designed to complement the large existing canopy trees and help shape the visual identity of this new urban destination. Though organized around the current existing conditions and constraints of this competition, the intent of the design involves a forward-looking strategy that can anticipate new buildings, temporary and permanent programing, and opportunities sparked by the implementation of the Active Tracks vision. This elegant, efficient, flexible, and durable composition of new leafy grove tree plantings, and micro plaza activity areas are designed to provide the local economy with a much needed stimulus and enhance the daily lives of people in Ft. Collins. All users of the urban core will benefit from this hand-made urban design that will become a source of pride and civic identity for the citizens of Fort Collins.
Planted







Ft. Collins Streetscape







Ft. Collins, CO





Active Tracks proposes a new and improved street scape and downtown corridor that prioritizes activity along the S Mason Street train line. A rounda-bout intersection is proposed as a means to organize linear “tracks” of pedestrian, vehicular, bike, bus, and railroad traffic. Traffic medians, new high-tech signage technology, native plantings, raised crosswalks, and the use of visually distinctive, pedestrian oriented pavement create a safe, traffic calming environment. The round-about is imagined to include stop lights and signals a change from the existing bike traffic to the proposed S Mason split bike paths, a more normalized system and work with existing conditions. Vehicular traffic is limited to one lane north and one lane south. Linear urban park corridors are created from reclaimed space from the existing roads.