Item No. 1 - 38th Ave.

38th Avenue West Street Improvements (Kipling Street to Youngfield Street) “Re-examine and Advance Sidewalks on 38th Avenue” was identified as one of City Council’s priorities in the 2021-2022 Strategic Plan. Staff has broken this topic into two geographic areas: 1) 38th Avenue West (Kipling Street to Youngfield Street); and 2) 38th Avenue East, generally from Wadsworth Boulevard to Harlan Street, or smaller priority segments. The purpose of this study session is to provide City Council with an update on a potential design process for 38th Avenue West. 38th Avenue East is on the future City Council agenda for a study session next year. This memo summarizes existing conditions, past planning/design efforts, and a summary of a possible improvement project to construct a continuous complete street with a focus on bicycle and pedestrian (bike/ped) improvements.
 This is a recording of the December 6, 2021, City Council Study Session 

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Item No. 1 - 38th Ave W. Street Improvements ( 0.32 MB )

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My wife and I are new residents of west Wheat Ridge (35th and Simms) but old residents of east Wheat Ridge. The rural feel on the west side is precious and road improvement efforts should be geared towards preserving the laid back and semi-quiet look and feel of the Applewood neighborhood. I'm witnessing occasional grumblings from neighbors about lost views that I don't want to ever see boil over. At the moment the intensity of the grumbling is low compared to what I've seen over the years on the East side but do be aware that change causes anxiety. That said, my dog suggests that improvements should be made to make 38th more walk-able which generally means sidewalks, bike paths, shoulders, etc. From where we live we cross 38th to reach a neighborhood that leads to a greenbelt and we do a bit of hopping from dirt to sidewalk to get there. Plus the dog feels a little "boxed in" from a walk-ability standpoint as she can't safely make her way to the east towards Parfet or even the northeast towards some interconnecting roads around Pierson Court. It makes her howl! Sidewalks would fix this. I've also noticed an obscene number of people pushing baby carriages through the neighborhood, kids on bicycles, joggers, and other active users that would benefit from improved access and walk-ability. Item #1 further mentions poor storm drainage which, assuming it ever rains again in Colorado, should be a priority. The bottom line is do what you must. Knowing there is significant development occurring on 38th and Youngfield, I am concerned that too many improvements to 38th would encourage traffic to and from the new Lutheran campus and associated shopping. This has the potential to significantly change the complexion of the neighborhoods in the form of more lanes, more traffic, and most concerning higher speeds - resembling the 38th of East Wheat Ridge and Denver. That kind of sucks but I guess if you have to you have to, right? If you can prioritize traffic calming that would be great so that crossing the street does not become a game of Frogger. It is one thing to triple volume and quite another to triple volume and speed. Finally, please make sure your traffic study explicitly considers all the new, planned, and preplanned people/traffic from upcoming developments on Youngfield, Kipling, and the old Lutheran campus. I would hate to do a study that we rapidly outgrow because we forgot about traffic from the new hospital and all those apartments. I've seen too many government projects that botch this, but never from Wheat Ridge because Patrick and staff are great at their jobs.
December 2, 2021, 3:29 PM
Joseph Giordano
I appreciate the past efforts of the City to address concerns on the segment of 38th Ave west of Kipling. Since 2008 and even 2017, there have been many changes in Wheat Ridge including the development of Clear Creek Crossing and more young families resettling in the area. I anticipate this corridor will only become more popular as an east west route through the city to CCC. I look forward to the day when there are continuous, safe sidewalks and protected bike lanes.
December 2, 2021, 10:38 AM
Heather Lowers
I live in between between 32nd and 38th, and since we moved in here 8 years ago, sidewalks along 38th have been a priority for our family! Our kids walk to and from school and that often involves walking, riding bikes or skateboarding along 38th Ave. I also have a child in a wheelchair, and if you have tried to take a stroll down to Sprouts or Starbucks with a kid in a wheelchair (or stroller, for that matter, or even with a toddler walking beside), I invite you to try it. It is simply not safe, and also very rocky and muddy. My kids are now older, and we have taught them how to travel 38th safely, but I see people with strollers or wheelchairs or small children all the time on 38th, walking to or from school. I am a big supporter of safe travel outside of cars, because it gives kids the independence they want and need and a safe route to Discovery Park, and also saves my heart from freaking out at some of the close calls I have personally seen. Please prioritize these sidewalks (and drainage) - I beg you. Humbly, Jenny Fischer
December 2, 2021, 10:24 AM
Jenny Fischer
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