Gunnison Vibrancy Initiative - Phase 1 Summary

You've shared a lot...

...and we've heard you. During the first phase of the Gunnison Vibrancy Initiative we asked you to provide your thoughts about our downtown - what are its strengths? its challenges? - and to share your vision for the future of the downtown.
Thank you to everyone who participated in the first Phase of the Gunnison Vibrancy Initiative – Honoring the Past, Embracing the Future. We worked throughout May, June and July gathering community input to understand people’s ideas, hopes and vision for our downtown. Conversations with the public focused on identifying assets, challenges, opportunities and aspirations for the downtown through a variety of engagement activities including idea boxes, public meetings, online surveys and presentations to community organizations.

We analyzed all the input we received to determine if there were cross-cutting themes in what people were saying. Several themes did emerge from this assessment, as shown in the table below. In general, people want to see us focus on and improve the sense of place and authenticity downtown provides. This relates to the way buildings are designed and fit into the downtown context, the way streets are designed and function, supporting a healthy business environment, and doing a better job to engage Western into the community.

Given the clear interest forming around these themes, we have used them to form draft goal statements, which will be presented for your feedback during the next phase (Phase II) of the project in the coming weeks. 

Input Summary

Theme# of ReferencesExamples of Public Comments
Preserving and Enhancing Sense of Place 475  
Physical Character and Identity 211 “Keep downtown character and history while beautifying fronts”
Activities and Programming 264 “More arts and entertainment” “Encourage sidewalk eating and drinking”
 Theme# of ReferencesExamples of Public Comments
Downtown Streets: Safety and Ease of Use 454  
Pedestrians 183 “Make the pedestrian crosswalks safer” “Sidewalk bump-outs”
Traffic Calming 83 “Slower speeds on Main Street and Highway 50 coming through town”
Parking 57 “Need better parking ideas”
General Infrastructure Improvements 46 “No center median”
Bicycles 45 “Lights that work with bicycles”
Truck Traffic 40 “Establish a truck route”
 Theme# of ReferencesExamples of Public Comments
Supporting a Healthy Business Environment 169  
Supporting a Healthy Business Environment 169 “More business diversity” “Supporting innovative and diverse businesses”
 Theme# of ReferencesExamples of Public Comments
Connecting Western and Downtown 58  
Connecting Western and Downtown 58 “Connecting campus with business owners-the two are exclusive right now” “More interaction between the community of Gunnison and Western students”
Theme# of ReferencesExamples of Public Comments
Other 93  
An Engaged Community 43 “We have the people, organizations, and brains to make good things happen”
Government and Leadership 15 “We need a leadership program”
Sustainability 4 “Set the standard for small town sustainability and livability.”
Housing and Affordability 19 “Needs affordable housing of workers”
All Other 12 “Too much ‘I’ thinking”

What do you think? Please provide input on draft goals through a questionnaire and provide feedback: CLICK HERE, and please stay tuned for information announcing Phase II activities, where we will dive into these topics in greater detail.

 For a detailed summary of comments and a complete appendix of all input received to date, CLICK HERE.

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