A big, busy summer for Fort Collins

Aug 10, 2015 | Regional Focus

Hopefully you’re having a great summer, including a few fun adventures.

The community is certainly making the most of summer. There are a lot of great things happening. Here’s a look:

As I write this, Galvanize is ready to open its doors. Located in the old Sunset Events Center at 242 Linden St., Galvanize is an interesting new concept — a community of entrepreneurs and learners connected across six campuses here and in Denver, Boulder, Seattle and San Francisco. There is space for entrepreneurs to work, classes for people wanting to become data scientists or learn web development, and a seed-stage venture capital fund. It’s a great addition to the community. Learn more at galvanize.com.

The local music and arts scene was on fire this summer with tremendous events, concerts and showcases. Thanks to the Downtown Business Association, SpokesBUZZ, the Lagoon Series and more for keeping the community creative and fun.

While nobody likes the inconvenience of road construction, we are fortunate to live in a community willing to invest in transportation infrastructure. In addition to city projects, the Colorado Department of Transportation is replacing bridges over the Poudre River on Mulberry Street and started College Avenue resurfacing last week. When completed, both will be great. In the meantime, it’s grin and bear it!

People are feeling good about the economy based on the home and yard improvements going on in town. Drive through any neighborhood and you’ll see fences being replaced, new roofs being installed, landscaping projects, expansions and new homes being built.

The community went big time with the opening of the Places of Invention exhibit at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. Of the six communities featured, Fort Collins is the only one focused on future innovation, whereas the others are interesting but historical looks back. The display will be in place for five years.

Voters did themselves a good service in April by electing a good City Council. The contentious rhetoric and divisiveness has abated.

The Supplemental Draft of the Environmental Impact Statement has finally been issued by the Army Corps of Engineers for the Northern Integrated Supply Project. It is a significant milestone on the way to eventually developing needed additional water storage facilities for Northern Colorado.

The Larimer Campus of Front Range Community College has a new leader. Jean Runyon replaced Bruce Walthers, who retired, as vice president. Runyon moved here from Anne Arundel Community College in Maryland.

Colorado State University was named the nation’s ‘greenest’ university, received a $10 million donation to fund a world-class horse hospital, and alumna Becky Hammond made history by becoming the first female head coach in the NBA summer league — and then her team won it all!

Site preparation is underway for the new CSU stadium; Woodward’s new corporate headquarters building and manufacturing facility have “come out of the ground” and the “new” Foothills Mall is about 90 days from opening. Altogether, these projects amount to three-quarters of a billion dollars being invested in the community.

It is great to be us! Enjoy the rest of your summer!

Column originally published in the Fort Collins Coloradoan July 30, 2015.