Westside Avenue Action Plan
Gateway to Revitalization

Westside Avenue Action Plan: Gateway to Revitalization


Garden of the Gods Park and Ridge Rd Intersection Street Signs


Samples of What We've Heard:

“The three-year planning and design effort is a model for collaboration between multi-jurisdictions and the public. It's exciting to see this much-needed public safety, mobility and economic revitalization project get underway.”
– Commissioner Sallie Clark, El Paso County District 3 and Chair of the Board of County Commissioners

“This is a great example of how elected officials and agency representatives can work together on critical multi-jurisdiction infrastructure projects that will benefit communities and the region.”
– Colorado Springs City Council President Merv Bennett

“A great number of agency representatives, citizens and businesses have put extensive time and energy into making this project happen. It's a critically needed infrastructure and safety project that will also encourage revitalization of a historic corridor that is vital to the economy of our region.”
– Manitou Springs Mayor Nicole Nicoletta

“Hundreds of residents, businesses and visitors between Old Colorado City in Colorado Springs and the City of Manitou Springs will benefit from this project. We appreciate the efforts of our local officials who came together to lead this project through many challenges, making sure we got to where we are today with the start of construction.”
– Welling Clark, President of Organization of Westside Neighbors

“The corridor is even more constrained than I imagined along several segments.”

“The drainage/ trail constraints with the creek are very significant.”

“What really strikes me is the extent to which the road is a north/south barrier to pedestrians.”

“How we will take care of an enhanced streetscape if we continue to have unincorporated properties?”

“The Colorado Springs Fire Department is looking forward to collaborating with other interested persons/organizations in re-establishing the corridor as a gateway to our two communities while maintaining or enhancing existing neighborhood safety relative to traffic flow, pedestrian access and safety, lighting, & emergency vehicle accessibility to businesses and residences in the area.”

“Would like to see a comprehensive planning approach with this project.”

“Would like see the project ensure access businesses and residences in the area to deliver emergency services – yet still maintaining an attractive area with economic vitality.”

“The corridor currently is not Americans with Disabilities Act accessible, especially the bridge.”

“I'd like to see the corridor have more intimacy and local access. If you want to get anywhere fast then use US 24.”

“I'd like the study to lead to encouragement of a mix of uses and projects that addresses multiple segments of society. I’d like to see some co-operative housing for folks of varying incomes in a situation that creates a sense of community.”

“The corridor is crowded with utility lines.”

“There should be a mixed use of residential and commercial on this strip.”

“I am hoping for a lot of consensus with this process.”

“Focus on and celebrate the bridge over the creek and its recreational trail connection.”

“Focus on pedestrian and transit connections to the Safeway shopping center area.”

“Promote and provide indoor and outdoor public spaces. Consider the preservation and access to Fountain Creek as a recreation amenity as well as a wildlife habitat.”

“There is no buffer between private property and utilities.”

“Private businesses are so close to road.”

“The aesthetic elements along the corridor need to be sustainable for the long term, requiring limited ongoing maintenance and costs, and providing accessibility for safe/efficient traffic flow, pedestrians, and emergency vehicles.”

“Since we are connecting ‘two vibrant historic districts,’ it would be nice to create a visual appeal that transitions from the design of ‘Old Colorado City’ to the successful streetscape design implemented in Manitou Springs. Accentuate the historic architecture of existing housing stock.”

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More Samples of What We've Heard:

“This stretch of land will no longer have the old nickname of No Man's Land. We now have a modern, safer road, bike lanes, a stabilized creek to reduce flood risk, and so much more. Businesses will flourish here. No longer is this No Man's Land. From this point forward, this is Adam's Crossing!”
– El Paso County Commissioner Stan VanderWerf, District 3

“A tremendous amount of recognition goes to the collaborative effort and dedication of the many people who worked through numerous unexpected challenges to complete this project. We are celebrating brand new infrastructure for this area and a renewed vitality. We are celebrating a transformational project that will benefit us well into the future.”
– John Suthers, Mayor of Colorado Springs

“I am passionate about the community engagement process that results in this type of citizen-driven plan, and I'm excited about the ‘slow-and-social’ experience that this revitalized corridor will provide. We're a bicycle friendly and outdoor-oriented region. This project represents how all modes of transportation can coexist. My continuing request and hope is that we continue to work together to address growth issues. One idea is to create mobility hubs for alternative transportation in Manitou Springs, Old Colorado City, and the Garden of the Gods.”
– Manitou Springs Mayor Ken Jaray

“Back in 2004, Marcy Morrison and I met for lunch to discuss this corridor. There were safety issues, no sidewalks, no drainage. The jurisdictions were a mish-mash of who owns what. At first, no one entity would step up and take it on. Through perseverance and passion, we pushed this issue at every regional meeting to bring attention to the problem. We needed to bring all the different allies to the table in order for the project to move forward. These types of partnerships are so important to get a project like this started – and to successfully finish it.”
– Former El Paso County Commissioner Sallie Clark

“All of Manitou is very excited to have this construction project finally complete! God love the businesses in that area – they have really been soldiers. They can now reach out to their guests, let them know it's a whole lot easier to reach them, and let them know the area is much improved. The new look and feel has changed the whole character of that area – with new lighting, sidewalks, and bridge – there's a tremendous difference!”
– Leslie Lewis, Executive Director, Manitou Springs Chamber of Commerce, Visitors Bureau & Office of Economic Development

“It's dangerous to cross the street along this part of the corridor.”

“There could be an interesting Nexus at Ridge Road because it provides access to both Red Rock Canyon Open Space and Garden of the Gods. Concentrating businesses that service outdoor enthusiasts like hikers, bikers, tour companies, outdoor gear store, bike rentals, health food restaurants, as well as permanent and temporary housing for folks interested in exploring these areas (and more) could enhance that Nexus.”

“I would like this area to include centralized parking for major attractions that encourages pedestrians and biking.”

“The (Midland) trail is great but needs a better connection to street.”

“The way the corridor is now, it has not been built for people; but rather, its been built for autos.”

“There is too little landscaping along the corridor; too much pavement.”

“This is one of the area's biggest transit routes; don't do anything that precludes streetcars; consider what happens with bus pullouts.”

“There is a demand for development in the area. People want to stay in the hotels here because it is centrally located between Old Colorado City and Manitou Springs.”

“The jurisdictional issues pose challenges.”

“This project can help to establish community connections.”

“Would like the project to create a welcoming atmosphere to local neighborhoods.”

“If residents and businesses feel an investment in the area is being made, they'll get their pride back. Aesthetics can be a catalyst for tourism. The area needs a feel of safety.”

“The Midland Trail goes from Ridge Road to Colorado Ave. (‘The Avenue’), then there is a gap and it picks up again at Columbia Road. This lack of a connection needs to be addressed.”

“There used to be a small, local settlement near the Columbia Street Bridge called Arronsdale Town. ”

“Adams, for whom Adam’s Crossing was named, was a retired general.”

“The lack of sidewalks in the corridor is treacherous to pedestrians walking to restaurants and shops.”

“The end result needs to be pedestrian friendly and walkable. Create a place where people want to come, park, get out and walk around; patios and dining along the creek would be great.”

“Would like this project to encourage a year-round economy for local businesses. We have the creek, the trail, we’re close to Garden of the Gods and we're the gateway to the mountains.”

“If we put in the fundamental infrastructure improvements it will lead to new business.”

“Goals for the study need to include making the connection viable from a business standpoint, to improve safety, to consider all the motorized and non-motorized modes of travel, to serve as a gateway to Old Colorado City and Manitou Springs, to consider a Ridge Road connector, and to result in an integrated, long-term plan.”

“Tie Old Colorado City and Manitou Springs with similar features.”

“The corridor needs better lighting, a better road bed, sidewalks, pedestrian features and accommodations, and landscaping. Traffic moves well but we need a left turn lane; there's no place for busses to pull over so they back traffic up. Also, stops are not well lighted or marked.”

“We've forgotten the history of this area and its significance. We need to brand this as part of the Historic Westside and get to the point where we can tout how coming here provides the historic, artistic, local flavor and western experience tourists are looking for. We should consider a melding of the historic with new age. This stretch is the ‘missing link.’”

Seal of El Paso County, Colorado
Logo of the City of Colorado Springs, Colorado
Logo of the City of Manitou Springs, Colorado
Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority
Logo of the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT)