On January 31, the City of Fort Collins is finally set to shut down Linden Street in Old Town, between Walnut and Jefferson for a long planned renovation project. It is estimated the street will be closed to traffic until complete this spring, or about five months.

The aim is to transform that stretch of Linden into a "convertible street" that aesthetically connects Old Town Square to the River District on the other side of Jefferson Avenue. Once complete, it will be open to vehicle traffic on the regular, but will easily be closed down for festivals and events, making it solely pedestrian space when applicable.

Map courtesy City of Fort Collins
Map courtesy City of Fort Collins

Phase 2 of the Linden Street Renovation Project was originally set to take place over the last couple of years, but was delayed out of concern for businesses on Linden between Walnut and Jefferson during the COVID-19 pandemic. Eating and drinking establishments have been utilizing some of that outdoor space for heated patios for their patrons. With the commencement of this construction, those temporary patios will need to be shut down.

While all agree the end result of the renovation will be a boost for the stretch of Old Town, the next five months will be difficult for the businesses to remain busy during construction. Access to all storefronts on Linden will still be accessible, but only by foot.

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What upgrades will come from the Linden Street Renovation Project?

The renovation is a multi-faceted project, combining both style with function. Pavement will be dug up and replaced with more aesthetically pleasing pavers, and old storm sewer drains will be replaced with more efficient, newer materials.

New curbing and planters will be installed along the street, making it feel more like Old Town Square and less like an old city street. And some very cool Tivoli-style lighting will be strung in a zig-zag pattern overhead, from Walnut almost all the way up to Jefferson.

Unsplash, Cris DiNoto
An example of "Tivoli-style" lighting, that will run overhead on Linden Street when the project is complete. Photo from Unsplash, Cris DiNoto

Lastly, what is currently designed as diagonal parking will be reconfigured as parallel parking instead. The city acknowledges this will reduce the number of spaces you'll be able to park on Linden, but points out that additional spaces will be created on Jefferson and Pine Street as part of this project.

For the complete details on the project and artist renderings of how it will all look when it's finished, visit the project page on the City of Fort Collins Engineering site.

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