Students walk on the Colorado State University campus.
“As we strive to uphold our land-grant mission of access and student success, CSU is committed to ensuring the safe movement of our students, employees and visitors to, from and through our beautiful campuses.”

– President Joyce McConnell

Rams Moving Safely

The President’s Vision Zero Task Force is charged with the examination of all mobility and safety related to pedestrians, personal vehicles, University and contractor work vehicles, bicyclists, skateboarders, e-scooter riders, buses and trains on and near the main Colorado State University campus. In 2021, this interdisciplinary task force will advance the priorities to improve transportation safety at CSU under the internationally recognized planning initiative, Vision Zero. The task force will pursue a set of transparent initiatives based on data collection and reporting to improve 1) Enforcement, 2) Infrastructure, 3) Policy and Standards, and 4) Education. According to the Vision Zero Network, Vision Zero is a strategy to eliminate traffic fatalities and severe injuries among all road users, while ensuring safe, healthy, equitable mobility for all. The task force aims to deliver a clear framework for adoption in the Fall of 2021, for CSU to become the first university in the U.S. to have its own Vision Zero declaration.

Goals of the Task Force

With the ultimate goal of eliminating serious injuries and deaths related to traffic and mobility at CSU, the task force has created five subcommittees with charges based on the core tenets of Vision Zero, specific to the following milestones:

  1. Complete Streets Standards – developing a University-specific Complete Streets standard and identifying the appropriate location to house it within CSU’s Facilities Planning, Design and Construction Standards.
  2. Safety and Access Assessment – framework to consolidate existing and new assessment processes that address the transportation system and building exteriors at CSU into one coordinated effort, using a shared reporting platform, with input from diverse campus stakeholders.
  3. Crash Evaluation Process – process will supplement existing police reports and evaluate the site of the crash for potential safety improvements to be addressed immediately or as a part of the Task Force’s annual report.
  4. Conceptual Review – establishing a process to uphold the CSU Complete Streets standards in new construction and major remodel projects at CSU.
  5. Annual Reporting and Safety Prioritization – developing a template for a public-facing Annual Traffic Safety and Prioritization Report based on available data sources at CSU.

Initiatives

A detailed list of initial recommendations is available in the task force’s Recommendations to Enhance Transportation Safety on Campus (June 2020). See below for a list of actions taken since that initial report was delivered.

Traffic control and engagement
The CSUPD Recruitment Team hired four new officers to address recent staffing vacancies, whose values and interests reflect the unique culture of CSU, including strong skills in education, negotiation and traffic control. Over the 2020-21 academic year, the CSU Police have partnered with the Rams Ride Right campaign for dedicated, personal outreach to CSU students and employees who are biking, skateboarding, riding scooters and walking on CSU’s Main Campus.

Infrastructure
The “Library Knuckle” (University Ave between the Lorry Student Center and Morgan Library) emerged as the top priority for implementation in 2021. Funds were re-allocated from the Lake Street and Center Avenue account for this infrastructure improvement. The work will be completed as part of the “Transportation Infrastructure Safety Improvements Project.” Kimley-Horn is providing traffic engineering and design services. Construction is anticipated Summer 2021.

Policy and standards
In Fall 2020, CSU contracted with Next Phase Engineering to engage with the CSU community to advance the Policy and Standards initiative. Outreach was completed with (9) campus groups and resulted in the “Transportation Policy and Protocol Report” and “Signing and Marking Guidelines.” The report outlines recommendations and next steps for:

  • Annual Crash Reporting and Analysis
  • Traffic Control Changes
  • Maintenance and Asset Management
  • Work Zones
  • On-Campus Traffic Code
  • Vision Zero
  • Transportation System Accessibility
  • Expansion of Priority Zones
  • Speed Management through Vertical Elements
  • Implementation Prioritization Process

Education
The CSU Moves online training is available to incoming students and the task force is exploring partnerships to encourage more student participation in Fall 2021. The Rams Ride Right positive reinforcement campaign popped up at key locations on campus throughout the 2020-21 academic year in partnership with the CSU Police. For the Fall 2020 semester, Rams Ride Right awarded 492, $5 RamCash cards to CSU community members for their safe, lawful behavior at 25 events, totaling over 2,500 engagements.

Task Force Members

Marc Barker  – University Operations

Erika Benti – Parking & Transportation Services

Laura Bently – Housing & Dining Services

Dave Bradford - Parking & Transportation Services

Dell Rae Ciaravola - University Communications

Justin Dove – Student Disability Center

Aaron Fodge - Parking & Transportation Services

Fred Haberecht - Facilities Management

Nicole Hahn – City of Fort Collins

David Hansen  – Facilities Management

Tim Kemp - Facilities Management

Jessica Kramer - Facilities Management

Jen Marley – Facilities Management

Christie Mathews - Housing & Dining Services

Josh McClure – Police Department

Anthonie Rose – Police Department

Wendy Rich-Goldschmidt – Police Department

Adam Vance- Deputy Director of Environmental Affairs, ASCSU

Dustin Vinzant – Police Department

Maggie Walsh - University Communications

Stakeholder Outreach

The President’s Vision Zero Task Force meets with stakeholders throughout CSU and the City of Fort Collins to educate the community about the goals of the task force and solicit input on safety and accessibility of the transportation system at CSU. See below for a list of scheduled meetings and please contact Erika Benti (erika.benti@colostate.edu to schedule a stakeholder meeting for your group.