In the Media

Curbed – Our intersections are too dangerous. Here’s how to fix them.

February 28, 2020

“Tactical urbanism can be a great way to test out an intersection redesign and demonstrate the benefits,” says Jill Locantore, executive director of Walk Denver. In cooperation with local officials, Walk Denver implemented a temporary makeover of one of the most dangerous intersections in the city, which ended up leading to permanent changes.

“This was a pretty large-scale demonstration that involved a lot of intensive planning with the city,” she says, “but neighborhood groups can do more scaled-back versions that still can be very successful at bringing attention to problems and build support for solutions.”

Denverite – Streetsblog Denver will no longer employ a full-time reporter as a coalition of advocacy groups takes over operations

January 16, 2020

“Since the beginning we have really appreciated Streetsblog Denver as readers,” said Jill Locantore, WalkDenver’s executive director.

Locantore said Streetsblog Denver’s now-dissolved board approached Denver Streets Partnership about taking over late last year. She said communications staff at the partnership will continue posting daily headlines to Streetsblog Denver on transit issues and the stories of people killed or injured in crashes, as well as material from a loose national Streetsblog network of independently-run sites. Locantore said the new incarnation of Streetsblog Denver also would have blogs by unpaid commentators and analysts and would occasionally hire freelance journalists to cover breaking transit news.

“We just won’t have a full-time journalist,” Locantore said.

Denverite – 71 people were killed while traveling around Denver in 2019 — here’s where

January 10, 2020

Jill Locantore, who has watchdogged what the city has and has not done for traffic violence for years as the head of WalkDenver, points to Oslo as possible model. The Norwegian capital had relatively deadly streets by European standards before committing to Vision Zero. It just finished 2019 with one person dying in traffic. The city is 20 square miles larger than Denver with a similar population.

“Is it really the case that people in Oslo are just so much more conscientious and safe in their individual behavior? Is that how Oslo got to zero?” Locantore said. “What is the lesson we should be learning from cities like Oslo and how can Denver apply those lessons here?”

Locantore believes retrofitting streets to prioritize people walking, biking and e-scootering goes a lot further than telling people to slow down. That means adding bikeways and bus lanes to make options other than driving more viable, painting crosswalks, and calming traffic with inexpensive but effective plastic posts and markings.

Fox31 Denver – Pedestrian safety improvements coming to Colfax

January 9, 2020

Denver’s Department of Transportation and Infrastructure says the place Johnson uses the most is among the intersections that will be improved with safety devices.

“That is exactly what we need to start reversing the trend (of auto pedestrian accidents),” Walk Denver Executive Director Jill Locantore said, adding, “Part of the problem is safe pedestrian crossings are too far apart and really infrequent.”

People who live along streets that are not pedestrian friendly tell the Problem Solvers they feel their neighborhoods are neglected.

Denverite – New Year and New Decade resolutions for Denver, by Denverites you know or should know

January 1, 2020

This year, as in 2019, we asked influential Denverites what they hope to personally accomplish or what they hope we as a city accomplish in the next one to 10 years. Here, in their own words, is what they told us.

Jill Locantore, executive director, WalkDenver: Establish a new, sustainable funding source for building and maintaining sidewalks. … Dedicate more bus lanes. … Reduce the neighborhood speed limit to 20 mph.

9News Denver – Denver adding more pedestrian-specific crosswalk lights

December 10, 2019

“HAWK signals are new to Denver so a lot of people have never seen them before,”  said Jill Locantore, with the pedestrian advocacy group WalkDenver. “So it’s not surprising that they would be a little confused when they see it for the first time.”

The light series starts with a flashing yellow light (to warn drivers something is happening), moves on to a solid yellow (meaning slow down and prepare to stop), then to a solid red light (which means stop), then to a flashing red light (which means drivers can proceed if the crosswalk is clear, like a stop sign). 9NEWS spotted several confused drivers on Tuesday afternoon.

Locantore explained that the lights are actually cheaper than a typical traffic light and that they’re becoming more common across the country.

KDVR Fox31 – Denver holds vigil for car crash victims on global day of remembrance

November 18, 2019

While people gather in remembrance on Sunday, the city and county of Denver commit to their plan to eliminate traffic fatalities by 2030 through their Vision Zero program.

“Someone loses their life every five days just trying to get around our city,” Jill Locantore, Walk Denver Executive Director said.  “Safer street designs, and slower speeds will go a long way towards eliminating traffic deaths.”

Denver ABC7 – 235 victims of Denver traffic violence remembered during candlelight vigil at Civic Center Park

November 18, 2019

One candle was lit for each of the 235 people killed as a result of traffic violence on Denver streets dating back to 2016, when the Mile High City first committed to its Vision Zero program.

“Someone loses their life every five days just trying to get around our city,” said Jill Locantore of Denver Streets Partnership, a coalition of groups pushing for transit infrastructure.

Streetsblog Denver – 2020 Budget: Scramble for Street Safety Funding Highlights Need for New Revenue

October 14, 2019

When Hancock introduced his initial 2020 budget proposal last month, the Denver Streets Partnership denounced the plan for its paltry funding for sidewalks and street safety.

The organization requested $6 million to fund projects related to the city’s Vision Zero pledge to end all traffic fatalities and serious injuries by 2030. Just $4.95 million was originally allocated. The organization then lobbied City Council and the mayor responded today with Vision Zero funding that totals $6.18 million

“It’s definitely a good thing,” said Jill Locantore of WalkDenver, a member of the Partnership. “It now adds up to our Vision Zero request.”

Streetsblog Denver – 1 Day Before Greta Thunberg Arrives, Report Shows 102% Increase in Metro Denver Auto Emissions

October 10, 2019

In a recent Streetsblog story about Hancock’s 2020 budget failing to meet the city’s mobility goals, Jill Locantore of the Denver Streets Partnership agreed.

“There’s this major disconnect between the city’s own goals and how they are allocating money in the budget,” she said. “All modes — walking, biking, transit, Vision Zero — there’s not enough funding in any one of those.”

Streetsblog Denver – Bicyclist Death Brings Denver Traffic Fatalities to 62, Same Number Reached in All of 2018

October 8, 2019

Street design changes could help protect cyclists in intersections, according to Jill Locantore of the Denver Streets Partnership. A measure that could help is the corner wedge, which consists of rubber curbs and bollards placed within intersections to slow traffic. The Department of Public works installed its first corner wedges recently on the 15th Street bike lane. But there are no protected bike lanes within the city’s intersections.

“We have yet to see a protected intersection in Denver,” said Locantore. “They’re getting close with the corner wedges that really force drivers to slow down and take a sharp turn.”

Denverite – Walking and biking Brighton Boulevard is better now that it feels less like Fury Road

October 1, 2019

WalkDenver’s [Executive Director Jill] Locantore is hoping the city copies and pastes the street design onto Federal Boulevard to make it more walkable, more bikeable and less deadly.

“This is a whole new standard of what’s possible on arterial streets,” Locantore said. “And so why could this not be the design for other arterials? It’s definitely upping the bar for arterials even though it still is not ideal.”

Denverite – Usually Denver’s streets store private cars, but once a year, on Park(ing) Day, some of that public space opens to people and hammocks

September 20, 2019

An hour and a half after opening, WalkDenver program coordinator Jessica Vargas said 20 or so people stopped by to lounge, work and converse at their parklet outside the Milk Market. John Riecke of advocacy group Denver Bicycle Lobby noticed that cars were driving slower on Curtis Street alongside six former parking spaces and current parklets.

Streetsblog Denver – Advocates: Denver Transportation Budget Not Enough; Sidewalks Need More Funding

September 18, 2019

The Denver Streets Partnership told members of the council that mobility funding within Hancock’s $1.49 billion proposed budget is so paltry that it would take 400 years to build out a complete sidewalk network.

“Mayor Hancock’s proposed 2020 budget will fund just five miles of new sidewalks out of more than 2,000 miles that are missing or sub-standard,” said Jill Locantore of the Denver Streets Partnership.

Golden Transcript – Safety advocates seek to stop bicycle fatality trend (also featured on the Centennial Citizen)

September 3, 2019

One thing that the data and all parties can agree on is that speed plays a large role in fatal accidents. The faster you go, the more likely it is that someone will not walk away from that accident, said Jill Locantore, the executive director of WalkDenver. WalkDenver is a pedestrian advocacy group.

On Aug. 7, Mayor Michael B. Hancock of Denver announced that the city would lower the speed limits on five arterial streets as a result of recent bicycle deaths. For Locantore, this is a good first step. Arterials are where most of the traffic happens. Because they are usually more complicated streets, they also need more complicated solutions when it comes to the safety of road users.

“We’re definitely glad to see them focusing on specifically arterials,” Locantore said.

9News Denver – Denver city council members approached about plan to slow down drivers

August 28, 2019

The groups Bicycle Colorado and WalkDenver want to change an ordinance that focuses on default speed limits for roads that have no speed limit signs.

Right now, that default speed limit is 25 miles per hour for streets and highways. Jill Loncatore, the executive director for WalkDenver, believes dropping that speed limit to 20 miles per hour will make the road much safer.

“It can make a big difference,” she said. “The chances of a person walking being killed if they are hit by a car nearly doubles if the speed of the car increases from 20 to 25 mph.”

Streetsblog Denver – 5 New Deaths on Denver Streets Leave Advocates Wondering When Safety Upgrades Will Come

August 20, 2019

After drivers killed two bicyclists in July, Mayor Hancock held a press conference where he acknowledged that the fatalities are a public health crisis and promised to install a range of street safety upgrades fast. The changes include adding high-visibility crosswalks, putting crossing posts in several crosswalks and reducing speed limits.

“They’ve announced these street design changes,” said Jill Locantore of the Denver Streets Partnership. “But the timeline for when those changes will be made is really unclear at this point.”

Streetsblog Denver – New Regional Vision Zero Plan Will Encourage Street Safety Beyond Denver & Boulder

August 15, 2019

The video is helping the Denver Regional Council of Governments kick off a new region-wide Vision Zero program to help cities and counties within the Denver Metro improve street safety.

“I love the video,” said Jill Locantore of the Denver Streets Partnership. “It makes a strong case that zero is the right goal for the number of traffic fatalities. That’s the starting point that should inform the rest of the plan.”

Outside Magazine – Denver Residents Are Fighting for Bike Safety

August 15, 2019

Walk Denver gave the city a middling grade of C last year for its [Vision Zero Action] plan execution, which Jill Locantore, the organization’s executive director, chalked up to missed goals (her group awarded Denver an A for new bike lanes but an F for new sidewalks) and the fact that improvements haven’t focused on the High Injury Network.

Denver Post – Denver experiences its first reported fatal scooter crash

August 12, 2019

Jill Locantore, executive director of WalkDenver, said that, whether or not the crash was the rider’s fault, it pointed to the need for safer streets with separated scooter and bike lanes.

“We can do something about those conditions,” she said.

Denver Post – Guest Commentary: Denver’s streets are for people, not cars

August 11, 2019

We are city of neighborhoods, where cars offer just one of many means of moving about, and where our compassion can extend to all road users. Let’s reclaim our streets for all the people who use them.

Andy Peters ( is bicyclist, driver, pedestrian, and transit user, as well as a member of WalkDenver’s board of directors and a former Colorado Voices columnist.

Streetsblog Denver – As Deaths Surge, Mayor Asks Homeowners to Support Changes to Their Streets

August 7, 2019

Jill Locantore, of WalkDenver countered that castigating drivers will not save many lives, but changing the physical design of streets can.

“Scolding people to behave more safely is only going to go so far when our system is dangerous by design,” she said after the mayor’s comments. “The reality is that our streets are designed to encourage dangerous behaviors and to create conflict between people who are using different modes of travel to get around.”

Denverite – Traffic deaths are having a moment in Denver. It’s the latest in a series of preventable deaths.

July 31, 2019

A semi truck driver struck and killed Dominic Valdez in a “community of concern,” a label the city uses to prioritize street fixes in neighborhoods that suffer from lower-than-average incomes, education and healthiness. Neighborhoods like these tend to fall in the city’s “inverted L” of marginalized areas, which tend to be communities of color.

“It doesn’t seem newsworthy to the people in those communities,” said WalkDenver Executive Director Jill Locantore. “It’s just, you know, daily life for them. Some are low-income and may feel less empowered to express their outrage.”

Colorado Politics – Tackle growth’s challenges through better transit

July 26, 2019

WalkDenver Executive Director Jill Locantore contributed this commentary about public transit in Denver to Colorado Politics as part of their “Mile High Growing Pains” series on Denver growth issues.

Denverite – Denver loved the Little Saigon Night Market so much it’s getting one more in September

July 26, 2019

Besides pleasing Denverites looking for something to do, these markets are meant to show business and landowners the power of working together. Half of the property owners in the proposed district must sign on before the plan goes to voters, but not everyone is on board yet.

Cindy Ambs, a neighborhood organizer with WalkDenver, said the first event was a good start. Business owners at the Little Saigon district told her they doubled or tripled their sales during the first event and are eager for more.

KDVR Fox31 – Debate about safer bike lanes in Denver grows after cyclist struck, killed by vehicle

July 25, 2019

The city has been considering placing more protected lanes in the area.

“What we see is that when you just have the paint separating bicyclists from vehicles, that’s still not as safe as it can be,” said Jill Locantore, the executive director of Walk Denver, which advocates for making the city more walkable.

During the past five years, there have been seven crashes involving vehicles and cyclists in the area.

Denver ABC7 – Walkability advocates call for changes to Alameda after pedestrian killed in drag racing crash

July 9, 2019

“So with streets like Alameda that are just designed to encourage drivers to go as fast as possible, it’s not surprising at all that we continue to have these tragedies,” said Jill Locantore with Walk Denver.

Locantore would like to see improvements aimed at slowing down cars and making the street safer. She has several ideas like adding trees to the side of the road, creating medians with pedestrian refuge and improving transit in the area.

Streetsblog Denver – Teen Drag Racer Kills Pedestrian in Alameda Ave. Killing Zone

July 8, 2019

Safety improvements to Alameda did not make the cut in the $937 million Elevate Denver general obligation bond, which voters passed in 2017.  The city’s current study would help it seek federal funds for permanent changes to the streets in the area. But why doesn’t Public Works first install fast, low-cost traffic safety improvements, like adding new crosswalks and narrowing streets with paint and plastic posts?

“We have several initiatives in the works, which will be announced shortly,” said Kuhn. They “include installing more low-cost pedestrian safety treatments throughout the city, including on the high-injury network.”

Jill Locantore, WalkDenver’s Executive Director, who is normally aware of such improvements, said she had not heard about them.

Denverite – Denver City Council is putting off voting on widening Peña Boulevard

July 8, 2019

Jill Locantore of the Denver Streets Partnership has said a better use for $93 million is stepped-up bus and train service to the airport.

“The goals of our city are pretty clearly laid out to reduce driving, increase transit, walking and biking, and to focus new development around transit,” Locantore said.

Denverite – Little Saigon Night Market attracts hundreds to Federal, laying the groundwork for a new westside BID

June 24, 2019

Dang and others have been planning to launch a BID over the past year. It’s one more piece in a puzzle of infrastructure projects that aim to make the stretch of Federal, south of Alameda, safer with improved access to local businesses. They’ve been canvassing the array of mostly family-owned restaurants and retail shops hoping to win over the 50 percent of property owners required to bring their BID proposal to a public vote.

Jill Locantore of WalkDenver said they hope that decision will be made in November of 2020. It’s been a long process because the neighborhood is so dense with individual proprietors, which she added is part of the area’s “beauty.”

Westword – An International Night Market Is Coming to Federal Boulevard on June 21

June 19, 2019

The night market is part of the Friends of Little Saigon initiative launched by WalkDenver and West Denver Renaissance Collaborative, whose goals include beautifying the neighborhood, focusing on pedestrian access and safety, and advocating for small businesses…. The strip will be turned into “a one-day demonstration project that will use low-cost materials to test out designs that could be installed more permanently in the future, including wider sidewalks, pedestrian lighting and landscaping,” according to WalkDenver. Cindy Ambs of WalkDenver explains that the ultimate mission is to create an official business improvement district under Denver’s BID program, so property and business owners are being enlisted to support the cause.

Asian Avenue Magazine –  Little Saigon Night Market pop-up coming to South Federal Boulevard!

June 2019 issue, page 10-11

The “Friends of Little Saigon” initiative, led by WalkDenver and the West Denver Renaissance Collaborative, will be hosting Denver’s first pop-up Asian night market on Friday, June 21 on South Federal Boulevard between Tennessee Avenue and Mississippi Avenue. The initiative is focused on community beautification and stewardship of the pedestrian environment along Federal between Alameda and Mississippi in Southwest Denver.

Denver Streetsblog – Denver Shouts ‘Get Off My Lawn’ With Obnoxious Signs in Cheesman Park

June 5, 2019

Jill Locantore of WalkDenver says parks should welcome people getting from one place to another, especially considering the city’s goal of reducing the number of people who drive alone in cars.

“Parks & Rec tends to think about walkways for purely recreational purposes,” she said. “I can understand why they discourage vehicular traffic. But why on Earth would they not want people to use the park to get to where they’re trying to go?”

5280 Magazine – Federal Boulevard Is Set to Get a Much-Needed Makeover

June 2019 issue

In October 2018, WalkDenver and the West Denver Renaissance Collaborative launched the Friends of Little Saigon initiative. During a yearlong planning phase, the local organizations are asking residents how they’d like to see their area, populated largely by Vietnamese-owned businesses, beautified. To provide an example, this month WalkDenver will begin installing a mural that celebrates the heritage of Vietnamese citizens along Federal.

Streetsblog Denver – At Event Remembering 88 Victims of Traffic Violence, Mayor Admits to Inadequate Response

May 16, 2019

The Denver Streets Partnership, whose members advocate for safer streets, asked attendees to write postcards to city officials, each suggesting that they work to lower the city’s default speed limit from 25 mph to 20 mph.

Denver CBS4 – Signs Help Shine Light On Preventable Traffic Crashes In Denver

May 15, 2019

“We put signs at every location of a fatal crash that happened since January (of 2018). There are 88 people who have died in preventable traffic crashes. Thirty were walking, six were on bikes,” said Jill Locantore, Executive Director of WalkDenver. The remaining deaths were people inside vehicles.

Locantore placed more signs Wednesday morning that say “Slow the Funk Down.” They lined the route of this year’s annual Ride & Walk of Silence on Wednesday.

Denver CBS4 – Dozens Gather to Remember Victims Of Traffic Crashes

May 15, 2019

Dozens of people gathered in Civic Center Park Wednesday night for the annual Ride & Walk of Silence. It was a night to honor the victims of traffic crashes in Denver. Wednesday’s event was put on by the Denver Street Partnership.

9News – Vigil honors the 88 people killed on Denver roads since 2018

May 15, 2019

88 people were killed in traffic accidents in Denver since the start of 2018. Those pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers were honored with a special vigil.

9News – New signs aim to raise awareness of how unsafe Denver streets are for bicyclists and pedestrians

May 13, 2019 

New signage popping up around Denver is encouraging people to remember that streets aren’t just for cars.

Jill Locantore, the executive director of WalkDenver, told 9NEWS that since January 2018, 88 people have lost their lives to traffic crashes on Denver streets. 30 of those were bicyclists and six were pedestrians.

Last weekend, volunteers with WalkDenver installed signs around the city at the location of fatal crashes, Locantore said. Each sign bears the name of the victim killed at that location.

Streetsblog Denver – Pop-up Traffic Calming Demonstration on Federal Shows That Fast, Cheap Fixes Can Improve Safety

April 29, 2019

“Federal Boulevard is so dangerous,” said Jessica Vargas, a program coordinator with WalkDenver, the group that organized the display of “tactical urbanism” with the Regis University Community Council and AARP. “[It showed] how easy it is to make changes to the street that would make the neighborhood safer and more inviting for people to walk, bike, and take transit.”

Denverite – Denver traffic deaths are rising despite changes in how police talk about and enforce traffic rules

April 13, 2019

Sixteen people have been killed traveling around Denver this year, four more than last year at this time.

“I think it reflects the fact that the city is not moving fast enough to make on-the-ground changes to street design,” said Jill Locantore with the Denver Streets Partnership, a coalition of safe streets advocacy groups.

One of those groups is WalkDenver, which has erected cheap and quick road treatments that shorten crosswalks and slow down drivers to demonstrate how easy it is to adjust the built environment for safety. Locantore is frustrated that city engineers have yet to adopt these fixes on Denver’s most dangerous streets while the bureaucracy figures out the funding for more permanent solutions, she said.

Streetsblog Denver – Blocked Sidewalks at Denver Construction Sites Could Improve

March 27, 2019

But the changes are a just a tweak to existing policies. Safety advocates say the city needs to make bigger changes — which are coming.

“This is a great step in the right direction,” said Jill Locantore, executive director of WalkDenver, in an e-mail. “[It] appears to be an effort by the City to do a better job of deploying current construction detour policies.”

But the underlying rules also need to be improved, she said, citing how current policies do not give clear direction to contractors about what exactly it means to “provide safe and convenient access.”

Locantore says the city is in the process of working on such a policy update.

Denverite – Denverites will soon take their lives in their hands less often and maybe curse less because of sidewalks closed for construction

March 27, 2019

“It’s a fantastic step in the right direction to use the city’s existing policies that they have more effectively,” said Jill Locantore, executive director of WalkDenver.

Still, Locantore worried that there’s still no policy for blocking bike lanes. She’s also looking forward to an overhaul to the department’s rules and regulations, which are in the works, according to DPW spokeswoman Heather Burke.

Denver ABC7 – Denver drivers urged to ‘slow the funk down’

March 19, 2019

Advocates for change and safer roads in Denver have turned to colorful and eye-catching lawn signs and a new mural urging drivers to “Slow the Funk Down.”

“We heard from the community, and one of their biggest concerns around traffic safety is speeding of vehicles through neighborhoods,” said Jill Locantore of WalkDenver.

Streetsblog Denver – Snow Removal: Denver Bus Riders Get Slush and Road Spray — but Few Bus Shelters

March 14, 2019

“The city plows the streets but does nothing to ensure safe passage for pedestrians after snowstorms,” said Jill Locantore of WalkDenver.

In Denver renters, homeowners and business owners must clear snow from sidewalks and bus stops, a responsibility that many shrug off.

But it’s not like this everywhere. Other cities have stepped up to keep people on foot safe after snowstorms.

“They could follow the lead of other cities that are starting to be more proactive about snow removal on sidewalks and curb ramps,” said Locantore.

Denver ABC7 – Federal Boulevard improvements planned by CDOT, city of Denver

March 7, 2019

WalkDenver wants your input on how to improve safety on Federal Boulevard.

“The community has been asking for the city to pay more attention to this street for a very long time,” said Jill Locantore, the executive director of WalkDenver. “It’s very dangerous and has a high fatality rate, but it also serves as the main street for all people who live and work along that corridor.”

A report from WalkDenver found that 22 percent of the fatal pedestrian crashes in Denver between 2012 and 2017 happened on Federal Boulevard.

9News – CDOT: Colorado sees uptick in pedestrian fatalities over last 10 years

March 5, 2019

Pedestrian fatalities are also on the rise in Denver according to Jill Locantore, Executive Director of Walk Denver.

“Fatalities have also been on the rise here in Denver over the past 10 years. This past year, we had one of the highest fatality rates of 59 people who were killed just trying to get around our city,” Locantore said. At Walk Denver, Locantore works to “reclaim Denver streets for people so they’re safe and comfortable places for people to walk and bike and take transit.”

Locantore emphasized “it’s not like people suddenly become reckless or stupid” when they get to streets on the High Injury Network.

“There is something inherently dangerous about those streets,” she said.

Streetsblog Denver – Pedestrian Deaths up 75% in Colorado, 35% Nationally; Smartphones & SUVs Partly to Blame

March 1, 2019

In Denver, a five-year action plan demands many of these measures to fulfill the city’s Vision Zero pledge to end all traffic fatalities by 2030.

Although increased safety education and law enforcement would be welcomed, Jill Locantore, executive director of WalkDenver, says that Denver should focus on upgrading its roads.

“People are going to get distracted,” she said. “We know how to design roads that are forgiving to human beings that get distracted. Let’s design the system so that those mistakes don’t become fatal.”

Denverite – What we’ve learned about Denver’s e-scooter use, and some questions about a ‘Wall-E’ future

February 22, 2019

By next year, Denver is aiming for 15 percent of city trips to be by foot and by bike. That won’t happen. The combined “mode share” for those options was about 7 percent in 2017.

Scooters may not help those stats. Of the people surveyed, 43 percent opted to scoot instead of walk. Denver’s foremost walking expert, Jill Locantore of WalkDenver, is conflicted.

“I don’t know if I know how to feel about it,” Locantore said. On the one hand, walking is so important because of its health benefits, she said. On the other, scooters get cars off the road to an extent, which is good for pedestrians — 32 percent of respondents said they would’ve taken a car if not for the scooter.

E-scooters also hog less space and pollute less than cars. Locantore said scooters aren’t the problem. The lack of walking infrastructure and amenities, like safe crosswalks, sidewalks and shade trees are.

Westword – Breaking Down Mediocre Report Card on Denver’s Bid to Lower Traffic Deaths

February 22, 2019

The Denver Streets Partnership has issued a report card for 2018 in regard to Vision Zero, an action plan launched by Mayor Michael Hancock that aims to eliminate traffic deaths in the Mile High City by 2030. And while there are some bright spots, the overall mark of “C” is no one’s idea of a triumph.

“We’d like to see progress that isn’t variable,” says Piep van Heuven, who’s both co-chair of the partnership and policy director of Bicycle Colorado. “Denver’s made very significant progress in a number of areas, but it’s important to measure year-to-year to see where we’re meeting expectations and where we haven’t gotten traction yet.”

“We’re really pleased Mayor Hancock has committed to Vision Zero,” adds Jill Locantore, van Heuven’s fellow co-chair at Denver Streets Partnership and executive director of WalkDenver. “But the city needs to do a better job of implementing the plan in a timely manner.”

Denver ABC7 – Denver updating street design guidelines

February 21, 2019

Executive Director Jill Locantore is interviewed for a report on the City’s plan to update its street design guidelines.

Denver Post – More people are dying on Denver’s roads as cops write far fewer traffic tickets

February 15, 2019

But more patrols aren’t the solution endorsed by the plan or the street-safety advocates who support its goals. Instead, both back wider use of automated photo enforcement, since the devices catch every violation in a target area. The worry — also articulated by the DPD’s Phelan — is that more patrols could overburden low-income communities and places with large minority populations.

“The last thing we want to do is give police officers another reason to be pulling over black and brown people in poor neighborhoods in Denver,” said Jill Locantore, who chairs the Vision Zero Coalition. She’s also executive director of WalkDenver, which presses for pedestrian safety.

Those areas tend to be along commuter corridors and state highways, including Federal and Colorado boulevards and Colfax Avenue, that state officials haven’t yet cleared for Denver’s photo-enforcement operations.

“So our biggest focus, policy-wise, has been fending off the attempts by the state legislature to ban automated enforcement,” she said. “In the way that it is now, it’s not allowed in the places where it’s needed most.”

Streetsblog Denver – Traffic Fatalities: ‘It’s Definitely Been a Bad Year for Colfax’

February 12, 2019

Drivers have killed four people on Colfax Ave. already this year. City officials could move fast to fix the deadly street — and the killing will continue until they do, say pedestrian advocates.

“It’s definitely been a bad year for Colfax,” says Jill Locantore, executive director of WalkDenver.

Healing the street’s safety issues could be quick and inexpensive, she says. With some paint and some plastic posts, Denver could immediately improve safety at the street’s most dangerous intersections.

Streetsblog Denver – Hit-and-Run Cyclist Victim Dave Martinez Remembered at ‘Ghost Bike’ Ceremony

February 4, 2019

Martinez’s death added to the number of Denver traffic fatalities in 2018, which reached 59, an increase of 16 percent. The number of people killed on the city’s streets continues to grow despite Mayor Hancock’s Vision Zero pledge to eliminate all traffic fatalities by 2030. Statewide, distracted drivers caused 57,298 crashes between 2012 to 2015. Martinez was killed as he biked home from work.

“Traffic fatalities are not statistics,” said Jill Locantore, executive director of WalkDenver. “They are people like Dave Martinez.

Streetsblog Denver – Broadway Lights: Why Not Change the Timing of Traffic Signals to Increase Safety Right Now?

January 18, 2019

On Broadway, one of Denver’s busiest pedestrian areas has become a zone frequented by emergency vehicles attending to severe injuries because the city allows drivers to speed wantonly — and isn’t moving fast enough to fix a problem it has already identified.

Which raises a question: Should Denver time red lights to slow the flow of cars?

“That’s an obvious yes,” says Jill Locantore, executive director WalkDenver. “It’s so quick and inexpensive to implement it, why not?”

Streetsblog Denver – Number of People Killed on Denver’s Streets Spiked Last Year, Continuing Upward Trend

January 14, 2019

Traffic fatalities increased 16 percent last year, despite a pledge from Mayor Hancock to make the roads safer.

The growing number of people killed on Denver’s streets continues an upward trend over the last five years—and safety advocates are losing patience.

“The urgency now is in implementation,” says Jill Locantore, executive director of Walk Denver. “We have a really strong plan, but the city has not made a lot of progress on actually implementing those actions steps.”

9News – Denver seeks ways to make construction sites less problematic for pedestrians

January 14, 2019

Any pedestrian will likely tell you if you see cranes in the distance, it likely means you’ll be rerouted. Denver’s construction boom has closed sidewalks around the city. Closures during construction are certainly expected. But pedestrian advocates say the City of Denver’s current laws governing them are antiquated.

“Currently construction detours only consider the impact on people driving and don’t provide good accommodations for people walking, biking or trying to access transit,” said Jill Locantore, executive director of WalkDenver, a group that strives to make Denver a more pedestrian-friendly city.

Denverite – Denver City Council kills contract for red-light cameras at last second

January 2, 2019

“Denver should be following the example of other leading Vision Zero cities like New York and Washington, D.C., that have dramatically expanded the use of these technologies, resulting in safer streets,” said Jill Locantore, executive director of WalkDenver. “Instead, we seem to be dragging our feet. The longer we delay, the more lives will be lost on our streets.”

Streetsblog Denver – You and Your Phone Can Fix Blocked Sidewalks and Bike Lanes at Construction Sites

December 21, 2018

Today in Denver, some companies create excellent construction reroutes. But with lax policies, many worksites fail to provide safe, direct routes. Earlier this year the Mayor’s pedestrian committee made seven recommendations to improve the city’s rules. But it’s not certain they will all be adopted.

That’s why WalkDenver is asking the public to document where construction sites affect pedestrians and cyclists. The organization created a mobile-friendly online mapping tool that makes it quick and simple for anyone to report locations and share photos.

9News – ‘Slow the funk down:’ Advocacy group creates signs to help stop traffic fatalities

December 14, 2018

WalkDenver, an advocacy group pushing for a more pedestrian-friendly Denver, created the signs as part of a community art project. Their project is meant to raise awareness about the city’s effort to stop traffic fatalities.

Denverite – Some Denver City Council members say repurposing parking space is key for new e-scooter rules to roll smoothly

December 11, 2018

Traffic deaths abound and the vast majority of Denverites drive despite new alternatives. Like scooters.

“I wish we got this much attention on the fact that people are dying in car crashes every single week in Denver,” said Jill Locantore, executive director of pedestrian advocacy group WalkDenver.

CBS4 Denver – Pedestrian Advocacy Group Asks For City’s Help In Making Streets Safer

December 9, 2018

Neighbors say it’s the fifth time a car has ended up in the yard.

“We’re lucky that in this case nobody was hurt,” said Capitol Hill resident Jill Locantore.

Locantore is also the executive director of WalkDenver, Denver’s pedestrian advocacy organization. She says something needs to be done to prevent people from driving too fast because it’s endangering her and her neighbors.

Streetsblog Denver – Latest Crash Reveals ‘Health Epidemic’ of Cars

December 3, 2018

Last week, Denverite reported that 59 people have died walking, biking and driving on Denver streets so far this year, more than in all of 2017. The growing number of fatalities counters the city’s own goal for safe streets.

“We’ve just been moving way too slow in implementing the strategies of the Vision Zero action plan,” says Jill Locantore, executive director of Walk Denver. “If the city is serious about getting to zero fatalities by the year 2030, they need to start putting stuff on the ground today.”

Denverite – More people have already died walking, biking and driving in Denver this year than in all of 2017

November 25, 2018

Hancock’s Vision Zero Action Plan calls for calming traffic speeds — the most fatal factor — with lower speed limits and physical changes to streets that slow drivers down and prioritize pedestrians. Examples include traffic circles on West 35th Avenue and an intersection overhaul at Colfax, Park and Franklin.

The city needs to aggressively install more of those inexpensive, rapid treatments made mostly of paint and plastic, says Jill Locantore, a member of the Vision Zero Coalition, a group of safe streets advocates.

“I think Denver needs to stop being much too timid,” Locantore said. “It’s a mindset. They want to engineer something to death, but when people are dying, there’s an urgency to get stuff on the ground.”

Denverite – A reader asks: Why do many Denver neighborhoods lack adequate sidewalk infrastructure? Come, walk with us.

November 14, 2018

No American city is really crushing the sidewalk game. Ithaca, New York, is doing a decent job, WalkDenver executive director Jill Locantore says. Residents and business owners there pay an annual fee based on the area’s foot traffic, and the city has special sidewalk districts, kind of like a business improvement district for walking. Kansas City recently passed a bond that transfers the burden to the city, not individual property owners. Then there’s Los Angeles, where the city is spending $1.3 billion to fix sidewalks — because it was sued under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Major cities in Asia, Europe and South America don’t really have this problem.

“I think in other countries they just build sidewalks like they do streets,” Locantore said. Not building them is a weird American thing.

Denverite – Denver City Council passes $2.4 billion budget with focus on housing and transportation

November 13, 2018

According to sustainable transportation advocates at the Denver Streets Partnership, the city should probably start looking locally for more funding sources — particularly since Proposition 110, a statewide transport funding measure, failed on Election Day.

“I think Denver is willing to be a player,” said Jill Locantore, executive director of WalkDenver and member of the Streets Partnership. “If state measures just continue to fail, Denver should take action at the city or metro-wide scale.”

Funding could come from fees, taxes or shuffling the budget, Locantore said.

Denverite – To give sidewalks the same love that roads get, Denver City Council will consider a tax or fee

October 22, 2018

“In the past two and a half years we have indeed made progress,” said WalkDenver Executive Director Jill Locantore. “We have also seen a growing consensus over the past two and a half years that the city should manage and fund sidewalks just like other transportation — like streets, like bike lanes. Imagine if 40 percent of our streets were unpaved roads.”

Streetsblog Denver – Eyes on the Street: Beach Balls and Paint Calm Car Speeds on 13th Avenue in Capitol Hill

October 1, 2018

People walking have the right of way to cross 13th Avenue in Capitol Hill, but few dare take it. Motorists, not the many people on foot who frequent the dense neighborhood, rule the commercial and residential strip.

That changed for one day, Saturday, when Capitol Hill United Neighbors and WalkDenver plopped some traffic cones, beach balls, and brightly painted car tires down where 13th meets both Marion and Lafayette streets. The materials temporarily extended the curbs, forcing drivers to watch their speed as they drove down a newly slimmed street or turned onto the side streets.

Streetsblog Denver – Mayor Hancock Walked Deadly Federal Blvd and Saw It’s Still Very Broken. Will He Fund a Fix?

September 25, 2018

“Out of Denver’s many streets, Federal Boulevard is probably the biggest affront to human life. Staggering traffic carnage statistics say as much, as do the people who traverse the corridor daily… WalkDenver wants Hancock’s budget to reflect the city’s stated goals of ending traffic deaths instead of piggybacking on long-planned projects and picking low-hanging fruit.”

Streetsblog Denver – Eyes on the Street: Temporary Traffic-Calming Pops Up on South Tejon in Athmar Park

September 11, 2018

“On Saturday, armed with traffic cones, old car tires, some paint, and some planters, reps from the Athmar Park Neighborhood Association and WalkDenver dressed South Tejon Street with three (temporary) safety interventions.”

Streetsblog Denver – Streets Partnership: Hancock’s Budget Needs $23M for Walking and Biking, and You Can Help Tuesday

August 15, 2018

“Just like every year we spend money on roads, every year we need to spend money on sidewalks and bike lanes,” said WalkDenver executive director and Partnership member Jill Locantore. “In fact, it’s even more important, because the streets already exists — the city is just trying to maintain them. While in the case of walking and biking, we’re trying to just finish building out the networks that are woefully incomplete at this point.”

Life On Capitol Hill – ‘Crazy wrecks’ prompt neighborhood traffic safety events near Cheesman Park

August 6, 2018

WalkDenver is a pedestrian advocacy group that works with communities and city officials to find ways to make areas more friendly to walkers. Jessica Vargas, a project coorinator with WalkDenver, said the organization is aiming to make Denver the most walkable city in the country.

“The more people you bring to the area, the more services you bring to the area you need to figure out ways to get people around,” Vargas said.

The organization helps local communities by navigating the permitting process with the city and providing its expertise on walking solutions. WalkDenver is also working on community projects on West Colfax Avenue and at the clover-leaf intersection at Federal Boulevard and Colfax Avenue.

“There’s very simple, quick inexpensive fixes that could be done,” Vargas said. “This is a quick way to demonstrate what those changes would look like.”

Denver Post – Federal Boulevard project will bring headaches for Denver drivers, but promises more safety for pedestrians

July 23, 2018

But while pedestrian advocates praise many of the improvements, some lament that the project leaves out other elements that would boost safety for those on foot. A leader of WalkDenver also points to the project’s addition of a third northbound lane, which is intended to match the existing three travel lanes on the southbound side, as counterproductive to pedestrian safety because it will widen the street. That’s especially so, said executive director Jill Locantore, because the need for turn lanes will keep the new medians from extending all the way to intersections, denying people on foot a midpoint “refuge” while crossing.

Fox31 Denver – Major changes coming to parts of Federal Boulevard

July 19, 2018

“[Federal is] designed like a highway to move a lot of cars at a very high speed, but those cars are traveling through very dense neighborhoods, so there are a lot of people who use Federal Boulevard as their main street. They need to walk on it every day,” WalkDenver executive director Jill Locantore said.

The improvements are all part of a street improvement plan called Denver Vision Zero Action Plan. The goal is to reduce the number of deaths and accidents.

Denver Post – Bike and pedestrian advocates ramp up pressure for Denver to drastically increase spending on projects

July 11, 2018

Denver has set out ambitious plans to add bike lanes along streets and make the increasingly urban city more walkable, but a coalition of advocates called Tuesday for officials to commit far more money to the cause. How much? The Denver Streets Partnership says it would take $40 million a year over the next two decades to fix sidewalk gaps, create more safe street crossings and build out a robust bikeways network.

In an interview after a news conference, Jill Locantore, the executive director of WalkDenver, said about Hancock: “He’s stated these really bold goals. It’s just unclear how he plans to reach them.” The partnership includes WalkDenver, Bicycle Colorado, the American Heart Association, the Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition and All In Denver among nine local groups on its steering committee. It’s echoing longstanding calls from some City Council members for a greater city commitment to support pedestrian safety and alternatives to driving.

Streetsblog Denver – If Hancock Wants Streets That Work for All, He Needs to Fund Them

July 11, 2018

Words don’t build infrastructure. Mayor Michael Hancock has said plenty of encouraging things about making walking and biking convenient and safe, but Denver has little to show for it. The city needs reliable investment in better streets, not pleasing sound bites.

That was the message from the Denver Streets Partnership yesterday. The coalition, which includes advocates for sustainable transportation, disabled residents, public health, and affordable housing, released a report calling for a $40 million annual investment in complete streets over the next 20 years.

That would be enough to supply every neighborhood with “a complete sidewalk network” and “bicycle lanes that are separated from vehicular traffic.”

Denver ABC7 – Report: Denver streets unfriendly to pedestrians, cyclists

July 10, 2018

The Denver Streets Partnership says Denver’s growing population and vehicle traffic are contributing to growing safety concerns for those who get around on foot or bicycle. The group released a report Tuesday calling for the city to dramatically increase spending on safety improvements.

“An average of about one person per week is dying in Denver just trying to get where they need to go,” says Jill Locatore, with WalkDenver and the Denver Streets Partnership.

Fox31 Denver – Heavy traffic can make streets unfriendly for cyclists

July 10, 2018

Colfax Avenue and Franklin Street. On any given day, a cornucopia of sights and sounds. Walkers, riders, joggers, scooters and cars. Lots of cars.

What possibly could go wrong? “This was one of the most dangerous intersections in the city of Denver. We have got streets coming in from five different directions,” said Jill Locantore, Walk Denver Executive Director.

This intersection, and many others in Denver, are square in the sights of the Denver Street partnership.

Streets designed for automobiles and not bikes and pedestrians, says the Denver Street partnership, are the main reasons Denver’s streets are unfriendly.

Denverite – Advocates say pedestrians and cyclists face a “public health crisis” in Denver, call for better infrastructure

July 10, 2018

Pedestrians and bicyclists in Denver are facing a “public health crisis,” according to the Denver Streets Partnership, a coalition of advocacy groups who are focusing on making Denver’s streets people-friendly.

“What’s lacking is a sense of urgency,” said Jill Locantore, executive director at WalkDenver. “Every week our city delays making investments in safety improvements to our streets, another life is lost. Since January of this year, 29 people have been killed just trying to get around our city. Sadly, the transportation options that are healthiest and most affordable are also the most deadly in Denver, thanks to poor street design.”

5280 – Even Denver’s Bicycle Cops Don’t Want to Ride on the Streets

June 26, 2018

Jill Locantore, Executive Director of the nonprofit advocacy group WalkDenver, says Tony’s perception of the problem is spot-on. While she acknowledges that bicyclists riding on sidewalks is “definitely something pedestrians are experiencing and frustrated with,” she cautions against making the situation a bikes-versus-pedestrians issue. The real issue? “So much of our public rights of way are dedicated to cars that everybody else is pushed to the fringes and we’re fighting for scraps at the edge of the roadway,” Locantore says.”

Next City – Pop-Up Block Party Closes Part of Major Denver Interchange to Imagine Safer, More Connected City

June 4, 2018

Led by a local business improvement district, the intiative known as Over the Colfax Clover is aiming to redevelop the cloverleaf interchange at West Colfax Avenue and Federal Boulevard, which the community says is unsafe for pedestrians and bikers and doesn’t get enough car traffic to justify its existence, the Denver Post reports.

An estimated 25 people walking and biking were injured by drivers around the interchange from 2012 to 2017, according to the Over the Colfax team, which includes the West Colfax Business Improvement District, WalkDenver and planning firms Michael Baker International and Critter Thompson Consulting, Streetsblog Denver said.

Denver Post – Group takes over Colfax and Federal interchange with mini-festival to show what could be there instead

June 3, 2018

There are two main issues with the interchange, said Anne Kuechenmeister, a consultant with Michael Baker International whose part of the initiative: Safety and connectivity.

Federal Boulevard is the most dangerous road for pedestrians in the state, according to Walk Denver. Twenty-one people have been killed while walking on Federal Boulevard since 2012, seven of them in 2017. The area near the Colfax Avenue intersection has seen the most pedestrian and bicyclist injuries and fatalities when compared to other stretches of the road, according to the group.

Streetsblog Denver – Sunday: Reimagine the Colfax-Federal Cloverleaf Interchange as a Place for People, Not Cars

May 31, 2018

The gargantuan highway interchange is a threat to life and limb for people on foot, and west siders are over it. Hence the name of the event: Over the Colfax Clover Design Demonstration.

“It’s not safe,” said Lisa Saenz, vice president of the Sun Valley Community Coalition. She’s been working with other neighborhood advocates for more than a year to redesign the interchange as an at-grade, human-scale intersection — and to get the transformation funded. “You gotta run for your life to cross the street. It’s just sitting there. It’s like a scar. There’s so much needed to be done with it, so why not ask the community about it?”

Drivers injured 25 people walking and biking around the cloverleaf between 2012 and 2017, according to the project team, which includes the West Colfax Business Improvement District, WalkDenver, and planning firms Michael Baker International and Critter Thompson Consulting.

Denverite – You asked: What can Denver do to become more walkable?

May 31, 2018

Narrow and missing sidewalks have long been an issue in Denver. There’s Elyria-Swansea, whose community advocacy around an extreme lack of infrastructure earned them a special earmark of an $18 million sidewalk fund. Councilwoman Kendra Black’s push to improve her south Denver district inevitably broached walkability as it relates to attracting new residents. And last year, a study concluded obese children are more likely to live in areas with substandard sidewalks.

“We’ve made a lot of progress in the last years,” said Jill Locantore, who recently took over as executive director of WalkDenver. But, she said, “We still have a long way to go.”

Fox31 Denver – Capitol Hill residents petition city for safety improvements along 13th Avenue

May 30, 2018

In many ways, East 13th Avenue is not unlike other city streets, but pedestrians say there are some serious safety issues.

“Getting out on 13th is always a challenge,” a pedestrian said.

The complaints center on the avenue’s current design. Much like Colfax — with narrow sidewalks — 13th was designed with drivers in mind.

“The planners were thinking about how do we get people in and out of the city, but they weren’t thinking about the role 13th plays for the surrounding neighborhood,” said Jill Locantore with WalkDenver.

Streetsblog Denver – The Longer Mayor Hancock Puts Off Safety Fixes for Federal Blvd, the More Lives Will Be Lost

May 17, 2018

“Each traffic fatality is a human life that was cut short,” said WalkDenver Executive Director Jill Locantore, who leads the coalition. “Each person who died had family members and friends who mourn that loss. The best way that we can honor the lives that have been lost is by dedicating our hearts and dedicating our minds to making streets and communities more safe.”

Mourners wrote postcards to Hancock in support of the funding, which the coalition will hand-deliver to the mayor’s office.

“It’s a commemorating night to remember the lives that have been lost over the last year and a half,” said Kristin Smith, a board member with WalkDenver. “It’s also a night to celebrate the fact that we’re all here together, choosing to connect, choosing to be here, choosing to not give up.”

Denverite – Federal Boulevard’s set for pedestrian fixes, but “hundreds of millions” needed for neighborhoods’ vision

May 10, 2018

The city of Denver is almost ready to spend $2.9 million to make Federal Boulevard safer for pedestrians, possibly as soon as next year.

But business and safety advocates want it to happen faster, and they want to see a much bigger commitment to improvements on the notoriously dangerous road.

“It’s going to take hundreds of millions of dollars to build out that complete vision,” said Jill Locantore, executive director of Walk Denver. “And we need to start now.”

Denver ABC7 – Neon painted utility boxes along East Colfax shed light on Denver’s traffic violence

April 24, 2018

“Human life and well-being should be the most important consideration when we’re making decisions about how to design our streets and our communities,” Jill Locantore said.

She is the executive director of WalkDenver.

It was her team, a group of East High School Students, artists and others who transformed 14 utility boxes along East Colfax.

Passersby said the boxes served as beacons of brightness along the active avenue.

Streetsblog Denver – Changing How Denver Views Traffic Violence Through Art

April 20, 2018

Motorists speeding down East Colfax Avenue will catch a glimpse of neon zeros popping off of once drab utility boxes and get curious about what they mean. People walking will get drawn in by the funky, electric paint job on the other side and read snippets about Denverites whose lives were cut short by preventable incidents of traffic violence.

These are the hopes of WalkDenver Executive Director Jill Locantore and the team of high school students, artists, city workers, and businesses who helped create Denver’s first public art project dedicated to spotlighting traffic deaths.

Streetsblog Denver – Denver’s Failing to Alert the Public About Traffic Fatalities

April 3, 2018

“There is no mechanism by which we receive notifications of traffic fatalities or serious injuries,” said WalkDenver Executive Director Jill Locantore, who leads the coalition. “We’re at the mercy of the police department just like everyone else if they happen to tweet something out.”

Denver could use a timely, accurate accounting of serious traffic crashes, instead of the haphazard system we have now. Without up-to-date information, it’s harder for reporters and the public to track progress and hold officials accountable.

Locantore would like to see a sort of online police scanner that pushes news of traffic deaths and serious injuries to anyone who signs up. She pointed to San Diego, which employs a messaging service called Nixle to text and email updates.

Confluence Denver – Denver trails behind in the race for people-powered transportation

March 14, 2018

Roughly 40 percent of Denver’s city streets have no sidewalk or poorly maintained sidewalks, according to the 2017 “Denver Moves Pedestrians & Trails” draft plan, a study initiated by Mayor Michael Hancock’s Denveright planning initiative, but which faces massive funding hurdles in order to meet the city’s active transportation needs.

Walk Denver Executive Director Jill Locantore breaks down the numbers even further. “Ten percent of the streets don’t have sidewalks at all, and an additional 30 percent of our streets have substandard sidewalks, meaning they’re too narrow for a person in a wheelchair or a parent in a stroller or even for two people to walk side-by-side,” she says. “That forces people to walk in the street with the cars, and oftentimes the design of the street encourages cars to go very fast.”

Streetsblog Denver – Walk on Federal Boulevard? Share Your Story to Pressure CDOT, Hancock’s DPW for Safety Fixes

March 2, 2018

While conditions on Federal have gotten attention from the Colorado Department of Transportation and Denver Public Works, WalkDenver wants to ramp up pressure by helping people who have to navigate the street tell their stories.

It’s called the Vision Zero Photovoice Project. The pedestrian advocacy group is teaming up with the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment, the University of Denver, and PCs for People to share the human effects of a shoddy Federal Boulevard. Anyone who lives, works, or spends a significant amount of time around Federal can apply to tell their stories.

Denver Metro Media – WalkDenver to install artwork along Colfax

March 1, 2018

The Vision Zero Community Art Project, led by the Denver Vision Zero Coalition—a group of organizations like WalkDenver who support Mayor Hancock’s adopted Vision Zero program to decrease traffic-related deaths and injuries—have been working on an art installation for the Colfax corridor. Denver muralist Pat Milbery and East High School art students are designing a mural to raise awareness about traffic safety. Milbery and the students will welcome input from the community to help settle on a design. The Vision Zero Community Art Project aims to address issues of traffic safety along Denver’s Colfax corridor by installing these murals in areas of high pedestrian and vehicle interactions.

Streetsblog Denver – WalkDenver Names Jill Locantore Executive Director

February 7, 2018

WalkDenver, Denver’s biggest pedestrian advocacy organization, has named Jill Locantore executive director.

With four years of experience at WalkDenver under her belt, Locantore replaces founder Gosia Kung, who stepped down at the end of last year.

I sat down with Locantore last week to talk about her strategy for WalkDenver and what it will be advocating for.

Denverite – West Colfax neighbors envision major changes to Federal Boulevard interchange

February 6, 2018

Walk Denver recently counted that more than 200 people per day walk across Federal Boulevard and West Colfax Avenue. The mobility-minded organization found that the number goes up during events and games at the nearby Mile High Stadium. Some of those pedestrians might be accessing the Decatur-Federal transit station to the south.

“If you look at it you’re like, ‘This is so hostile to pedestrians. Why would anybody actually walk here?’” said Jill Locantore, newly named executive director of Walk Denver.

“The Colfax-Federal cloverleaf is just a perfect example of a street that is just incredibly dangerous for people who are walking, biking or trying to access transit,” Locantore said.

Streetsblog Denver – Why Federal Boulevard Is Denver’s Deadliest Street — And How to Fix It

January 4, 2018

WalkDenver has been pushing the Colorado Department of Transportation and Denver Public Works to fix Federal now, not later. After another year with an obscene death toll, the organization is putting out a call to action.

“With a traffic fatality rate 20 times the average for urban streets in Colorado, Federal Boulevard presents a serious public health problem,” said WalkDenver Associate Director Jill Locantore. “We know how to make Federal safer for everyone, and there’s no excuse for failing to act quickly. People’s lives are at stake.”

9News Denver – Should Denver consider changing responsibility for sidewalks?

December 20, 2017

A recent survey showed 40 percent of the city’s sidewalks were either in disrepair, not up to code or completely missing.

“The fact that a huge proportion of our city sidewalks are in bad condition tells us that the current system doesn’t work very well,” Jill Locantore with Walk Denver told Next.

Locantore suggested the city look at other models of caring for sidewalks.

Streetsblog Denver – Draft Pedestrian Plan Diagnoses Denver’s Walkability Problem But Falls Short on Solutions

November 30, 2017

“We think the document does an excellent job of positioning the city to be more proactive about building out the sidewalk network and creating safe pedestrian crossings,” said WalkDenver Associate Director Jill Locantore. “I mean, that’s a huge step forward for the city of Denver. It does fall short in setting out a target time frame by which it will actually build out the network.”

Locantore said the document is also “incomplete” because it fails to address the need to reduce speeding and calm car traffic. A continuous sidewalk network is just the starting point for a walkable city — people also need to feel safe and comfortable while they’re walking around. If you’ve got sidewalks but people still have to cross wide, high-speed streets where drivers whip around corners, you don’t have a pedestrian friendly city.

CBS4 Denver – Federal Boulevard Changes Include Focus On Pedestrian Safety

September 25, 2017

A man crossing Federal Boulevard in June nearly was struck by one car and then the next day was hit by a different car while he tried to cross that same street. His death is one of several the non-profit Walk Denver has counted so far this year.

“This really is an urgent public health issue,” said Jill Locantore with the group. “People are literally dying just trying to get around on Federal.”

Vision Zero hopes to address spots along Federal Boulevard that are not safe for people trying to walk along the street or cross at intersections. The goal of the initiative launched by the City is to have zero traffic deaths by 2030.

Walk Denver advocates for aggressive plans like Vision Zero and wants to make Denver the most walkable city in the country.

Streetsblog Denver – Speak Up for a Walkable, Transit-Friendly Quebec Street

September 22, 2017

Pedestrian advocates WalkDenver stopped short of calling for an end to the widening, but are calling for any new lanes to prioritize buses, not cars.

“Simply widening Quebec would just create more traffic, encourage speeding, and make the street less safe for everyone,” said WalkDenver Policy Director Jill Locantore. “With new sidewalks and dedicated transit lanes on Quebec, more people could travel more safely along the corridor, without relying on their personal vehicles to get where they need to go.”

North Denver Tribune – On the street where you live: sidewalks?

September 13, 2017

How to pay for needed improvements? WalkDenver’s goal is to have the city treat sidewalks like other infrastructure, said Jill Locantore, WalkDenver’s policy and program director. “The bottom line is we would like the city to proactively address the need to build, upgrade, and repair sidewalks in a comprehensive manner, so that every Denver neighborhood has the basic infrastructure that people need to safely get around on foot,” Locantore said.

Streetsblog Denver – WalkDenver to Mayor Hancock: Make Federal Blvd a Safe Place to Travel Now, Not Later

September 8, 2017

Following the deaths of Raymond Sanchez and Tina Padilla in a three-day span late last month, WalkDenver is demanding that the Hancock administration make physical fixes to the street and enact policy changes to make Federal a safe place for everyone, rather than a speedway where people cross at the risk of death.

In a letter to its members, the group called on Hancock’s streets department to slow down drivers and prioritize people walking with simple engineering fixes, and to dedicate space for buses that would eliminate conflict between vehicles and people boarding and disembarking. WalkDenver also wants state legislators to broaden permitted use of electronic speed enforcement.

Confluence Denver – The 5280 Loop: Linking Neighborhoods, Rethinking the Way People Get Around Denver

August 9, 2017

The concept has the support of local pedestrian and bike advocates. “We see the downtown loop as a great pilot program that can inform policies that would allow improvements to be made throughout the city,” says Jill Locantore, associate director of the group WalkDenver. “We’re kind of the cheerleaders of the project. Our main focus is on city-wide policies and practices.”

“Even though downtown Denver is probably the most walkable and bikeable part of the city, there are key pinch points where it’s difficult to get from one side of the street to the other,” said Locantore. “The 5280 Loop, we hope, will address some of those key barriers that make it difficult to get, not only around downtown, but into and out of downtown.”

Denverite – Grading Denver’s Vision Zero draft action plan to make walking and biking safer

August 7, 2017

Denver’s Vision Zero Coalition, a group that includes Walk Denver and other nongovernmental players, was a part of the TAC as well. The coalition also successfully advocated for slower speeds to be a part of Denver’s Vision Zero plan.

Confluence Denver – What If All of Denver Bikers and Walkers Banded Together? They Have, and They Want Safer Streets

June 14, 2017

If the [Denver Streets Partnership] succeeds, the lion’s share of the increased funding will go to more and better sidewalks. “It really is a citywide problem,” says Jill Locantore, associate director of WalkDenver. “It’s remarkable how widespread it is. They have to function as a network. If there’s a sidewalk on half of a block and not the other half of a block, it doesn’t function as a sidewalk.”

She points to Globeville and Elyria-Swansea in northeast Denver as neighborhoods where the pedestrian infrastructure is particularly lacking.

One problem is that the property owners are responsible to build and maintain adjacent sidewalks by a city ordinance that’s rarely enforced. “People are shocked when they find out the city doesn’t pay for this critical piece of infrastructure,” says Locantore.

About a quarter of the city’s streets have no sidewalks at all, and 40 percent of the existing sidewalks are not accessible to those with disabilities. It’s estimated that about $600 million is needed to build out Denver’s sidewalks, ongoing maintenance not included.

At the current rates of municipal spending, says Locantore, “It would take hundreds of years to build out a sidewalk network.”

Streetsblog Denver – Here’s a Logic-Ridden Presentation on the Urgent Need to Make Denver People-Friendly

May 19, 2017

Denver’s growth spurt has forced us to a fork in the road: Continue to shape the city around cars and the hostile streets they engender, or begin to undo the mistakes of last century by prioritizing people. That’s what Blueprint Denver, the city’s forthcoming land use and transportation plan, should remedy. Blueprint is part of the Hancock administration’s Denveright planning overhaul.

The people behind the plan come from all walks of the city, and one of them is Jill Locantore, associate director of WalkDenver. She gave a presentation last month at a Blueprint Denver task force meeting that deserves more eyes and ears than were present that day. (Trust me, I go to a lot of these meetings, and they’re rarely this juicy.)

Enjoy: Jill Locantore Drops Mic at Blueprint Denver Meeting

Streetsblog Denver – Walk and Ride of Silence Memorializes the People Who’ve Died in Denver Traffic

May 18, 2017

The Denver Vision Zero Coalition and people who’ve lost loved ones on the city’s poorly designed streets gathered yesterday to remember the victims, in the hope that future tragedies will be prevented.

About 70 people met at the intersection of Colfax and Park on an overcast Wednesday evening, carrying roses and wearing flowers around their necks. From there, they walked and biked to Cheesman Park, escorted by police officers and wrapped in silence, in remembrance of the people killed in traffic on Denver streets.

Denverite – Watch Sunnyside paint a new street mural to improve walkability

May 16, 2017

The likeness of the Trevista school’s mascot, Frankie the Falcon, now adorns the street in front of the school. His radiating blue feathers are a beacon to slow drivers down. His presence is also a reward for neighbors’ hard work in charting the neighborhood’s walkability.

Last year, Walk Denver, the city’s advocates for pedestrians, challenged neighborhoods to collect data on sidewalks and intersections for WalkScope, an interactive guide to each of Denver’s blocks. Sunnyside, Barnum and Valverde came out as the winners.

9News Denver – New street mural in Denver’s Sunnyside neighborhood to promote active living

May 13, 2017

The mural is part of citywide project stemming from a three-year grant from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. The grant money comes from taxes on tobacco which is used for Healthy Eating and Active Living programs, or H.E.A.L. “With the grant, we are collecting a lot of data about actual walking and biking conditions,” Kayla Gilbert, the city’s Active Living coordinator, said. “This information is information we’ve never had before at the city level so we’re really using it to prioritize on a wider scale where to put improvements for walking and biking.”

To help with the city’s efforts, a competition between neighborhoods was created. Last May, the city held a data collection challenge and asked teams to compete to collect the most data about sidewalks and intersections n their neighborhoods for two weeks. The Sunnyside neighborhood was among the three teams that won the challenge. “They won funds to create their own neighborhood design walkability project,” Gilbert said. Sunnyside chose the mural which volunteers painted Saturday morning.

Denver ABC7 – Newly-formed coalition calls for $40 million a year for bike, pedestrian projects

April 12, 2017

The Denver Streets Partnership, which is made up of Bicycle Colorado, BikeDenver, Denver B-cycle, Denver Cruiser Ride, WalkDenver and the Denver Vision Zero Coalition, is asking city leaders to dedicate $40 million a year to improving sidewalks, bike facilities and access to transit.

The group presented a letter to Mayor Michael Hancock and members of the Denver City Council on Tuesday introducing itself and its goals. Jill Locantore, Associate Director of WalkDenver, said the various organizations in the group realized it was important to combine their efforts toward a common goal.

“We all individually had been advocating for increased funding in different areas,” Locantore said. “We thought there’d be real value in all of us coming together to speak with a unified voice.”

Streetsblog Denver – Denver Public Works Now Convenes “Rapid Response Teams” After Fatal Crashes

March 30, 2017

Locantore says it’s been helpful to work closely with the police officers who respond to traffic crashes day in and day out. They understand enforcement, but they’re not trained as engineers or city planners, which is where DPW and advocates come in.

“That’s not a fun part of their job, and they want us to collectively as a city to do whatever we can to address traffic fatalities,” Locantore says. “But because they don’t understand street design, they often have a little bit of a fatalistic attitude, that there’s only so much we can do.

“To me, the value is relationship building. To know each other as human beings is incredibly important to be able to work together on these issues going forward.”

Confluence Denver – Getting Over the Cloverleaf: Federal and Colfax Interchange a Barrier for West Side

March 22, 2017

Most agree the cloverleaf is a barrier out of the 1950s. What’s been lacking is money and will. “I think it’s intimidating,” says Gosia Kung, founder and executive director of WalkDenver. “It’s been talked about for a long time but here’s never been enough political will to move it forward.”

No one really knows just how much it would cost to say, make the interchange an at-grade intersection and restore the original street grid. The West Colfax Business Improvement District and WalkDenver are trying to come up with that figure, but first they need a concept. The organizations are heading a planning and design process called Over the Colfax Clover. The goal? Collaborate with community members and key partners like CDOT, RTD and Denver Public Works to come up with a design and identify “creative funding solutions.” The group will even host an event in one of the clover leaves this summer to show its potential.

Denver ABC7 – What’s the deal with Denver’s crumbling (and nonexistent) sidewalks?

March 15, 2017

If a property owner fails to make necessary repairs to a sidewalk, a city crew will do the work at the owner’s expense. The result of this policy is a sort of patchwork of sidewalks. Some areas have sidewalks and some don’t, while some sidewalks are well-maintained and others are in a state of total disrepair.

It’s an issue the associate director of advocacy group WalkDenver calls a serious safety hazard. Jill Locantore said her organization has spent years trying to get Denver officials to take pedestrian needs more seriously. “We want them to treat sidewalks like other basic infrastructure in the city,” Locantore said.

Not only are bad sidewalks a safety issue, Locantore said, but placing the responsibility of upkeep on property owners puts an undue burden on low-income residents. Some of the biggest problem areas are low-income neighborhoods where homeowners can’t afford the financial burden of building and maintaining sidewalks.

WalkDenver’s ‘Denver Deserves Sidewalks’ campaign urges the city to change its policy and come up with a dedicated source of funding for building and maintaining sidewalks citywide. Other metro-area cities, such as Westminster and Englewood, add a surcharge to residents’ utility bills to fund sidewalk projects.

Denver Post – Where the sidewalk ends: In Denver, too many places

February 14, 2017

Jill Locantore with WalkDenver said the sidewalk network in the city is not functioning properly. The city must take over, and she said ideally there would be a permanent funding source for maintenance of existing sidewalks and construction of missing segments.

CBS Denver – Victim Of Devastating Crash Meets With Mayor About Pedestrian Safety

February 14, 2017

Tuesday afternoon, Bridgeman and supporters of the Safe Streets for Denver campaign, part of the Denver Vision Zero Coalition, walked and biked from Union Station to the Denver City and County Building.

Bridgeman met Hancock and asked for his support in making changes to safer speeds. She also hopes he will consider changes to street designs around the city.

“Mayor Hancock, I would like you to make our busy city streets safer,” Bridgeman said. “I don’t want what happened to me happening to anyone, ever.”

Streetsblog Denver – Students ask Hancock to overhaul Dangerous High-Speed Streets

February 14, 2017

Last year, 61 people lost their lives on Denver streets — the most since 2005. “We have the knowledge and the tools to prevent traffic crashes from ending in tragedy,” said Jill Locantore, associate director of WalkDenver. “We know that speed is the leading cause of fatal crashes. The difference between a driver who hits a pedestrian going 20 miles per hour versus 40 miles per hour is the difference between life and death. We also know how to design streets for safe speeds.”

Confluence Denver – Grad students help design a more walkable Montbello

January 12, 2017

WalkDenver, in its latest partnership with CU Denver graduate students, is tackling walkability issues in northeast Denver’s Montbello neighborhood….

WalkDenver reports that more than 90 percent of students at McGlone Academy and Maxwell Elementary — part of its 10 school Safe Routes to School Travel Plan project — live within a mile of their respective campuses and don’t have school buses, meaning that children in the area walk, bike or are driven to school. In making the assessments, the CU Denver students performed on-site audits, researched demographic data interviewed local residents and used the WALKscope tool.

Denver Post – Denver officials hashing out ways to help pay for sidewalks

January 3, 2017

Jill Locantore, policy and program director for pedestrian advocacy group WalkDenver, said she’s encouraged by the city’s discussions.

“The ultimate goal that we’re focused on is treating sidewalks like any other type of infrastructure in the city,” she said, in “the same way we treat the streets or the sewer system — where the city takes a comprehensive approach to building a complete network and maintaining that network over time.”

Denverite – Denver has a huge trails and transit system, but a missing piece may keep it from being used

December 22, 2016

To simulate the journey, I called up Gosia Kung, founder of the nonprofit WalkDenver, and made her try to find the station.

Coming out of Gate 1, we found signs for gates, parking and the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame — but not the light rail station, which sees a huge spike on game days, according to RTD.

“Trying to find a way out of here and look for a light rail station, there’s no indication where to go,” Kung said.

Streetsblog Denver – Denver Council Narrows the Options to Fund a City Sidewalk Network

December 21, 2016

An optional fee would have to be paired with “an aggressive enforcement program,” so there’s incentive to buy in, said WalkDenver Policy Director Jill Locantore. “We’re looking for a comprehensive solution and we’re open to exploring all these different strategies, but the devil’s in the details… The fact they’re even considering this is a step in the right direction.”

Denver Public Works estimates it would cost $475 million to bring the city’s sidewalk network up to snuff, while WalkDenver, a major force behind the sidewalk initiative, puts that number closer to $600 million.

Denver Post – Enough talk on Denver sidewalk woes, time to walk

December 14, 2016

“Some communities lack the combined income needed to tackle projects of this nature, and it would be a shame if the solution failed to assist poorer neighborhoods.

That’s how we fear an incentive program would play out. The incentives might tip the scales to allow a middle-class neighborhood to mobilize, but it could leave poorer neighborhoods behind. The public right now can help identify sidewalk woes by using the city’s reporting tool:

Denver Post – Denver council approves $1.9B budget that includes more cops, affordable housing fund — but little for sidewalks

November 14, 2016

The council faced pressure to address sidewalk gaps during an Oct. 24 public hearing on the budget, including from Walk Denver executive director Gosia Kung.

“Just sidewalks alone — $2.5 million is just a drop in the bucket for a need that’s right now estimated at $475 million,” Kung said. “So we would like to encourage City Council and the mayor to take bold action and dedicate more funding — and find new funding sources — to support our pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure, so that we can live up to our aspiration of being a healthy and active city.”

Streetsblog Denver – WalkDenver Wants to Help Residents Take First Step Towards a Car-Lite Life

October 25, 2016

“How easy is it to walk a mile? Bike to the store? Take transit to work instead of driving? If you live in West Denver, probably not as easy as it should be. Still, if you drive most places, it might be easier than you realize. That’s why WalkDenver just launched Project Shift. It’s a program that aims to help West Denver residents ditch their car more often and go car-lite or, if they’re ready, try living without a personal car altogether. The project is twofold: helping residents use active transportation options that already exist, and teaching them how to advocate for more.”

Fox 31 Denver – Colfax business districts want $500,000 from city council for improvements

September 27, 2016

“Colfax was originally designed to move automobiles and it moves a lot of them very quickly, which makes it a very dangerous environment for pedestrians,” said Jill Locantore, program director for Walk Denver.

Streetsblog Denver – Denver Council Weighs Three Options to Fix Broken Sidewalk Network

August 11, 2016

“Finding a secure and sustainable funding source to treat pedestrian infrastructure as an essential part of the transportation network — especially in low-income neighborhoods — is what Denver needs most.”

Next City – Denver’s First Mile/Last Mile Disconnect: Sidewalks

July 14, 2016

“The city should have a good proactive program for going out and fixing the sidewalks when they need to, in the same way that they go out and fix the potholes and the roadway rather than leaving it up to individual property owners to take care of it,” says Jill Locantore, policy and program director for WalkDenver.

Denver Urbanism – Damaged Road? Fix It Immediately! Damaged Sidewalk? Forget It!

June 21, 2016

“The current policy itself is absurd. Can you imagine if the city took the same policy approach and required property owners to fix the potholes in the streets in front of their homes? What we need in Denver is for the city to treat sidewalks as critical transportation infrastructure that’s on equal standing with streets, with the city taking responsibility for the construction and maintenance of our public sidewalk network.”

Streetsblog Denver –  Now It’s Up to City Council to Solve Denver’s Sidewalk Woes

April 1, 2016

“Fundamentally, one of the biggest flaws in the current policy is that it’s just really inefficient to build a transportation network one property at a time,” said WalkDenver Policy Director Jill Locantore. “Imagine if this is how we managed our streets — if it was a disconnected set of fragments and we just patiently waited for private property owners to fill in the gaps whenever they had the time and the wherewithal to do so.”

Denver Post – Editorial: Denver must make sidewalks a priority, too

March 26, 2016

“With the streets,” [Denver City Councilman Paul] Kashmann reminded us, “we go around and establish needs and set priorities and then make fixes.” It’s time that a similar process applied to sidewalks, too.

Denver Post – Keegan: Stop talking about sidewalks; build them

March 4, 2016

“Although no citizen ever wants to pay more taxes, building and maintaining sidewalks is a perfect example of how taxpayer dollars should be spent, where everyone kicks in money to accomplish as a group what cannot feasibly be done by individuals.”

Denver Post – Denver panel hears earful on impact of missing and crumbling sidewalks

February 24, 2016

“I don’t have options,” said Stewart Tucker Lundy, who uses a wheelchair and is a member of the Denver Commission for People with Disabilities. “If the sidewalk is obstructed, that is me not going to my job. If that sidewalk is not there or is nonexistent, you’re looking at a person who is not contributing to society.”

Denver Post – What should Denver do about its aging sidewalks?

February 19, 2016

“Appeals from the advocacy group WalkDenver and residents across the city are gaining new traction at city hall . . . Council members including Paul Kashmann, who’s chairing a new council working group on sidewalks, say it’s time for the city to reconsider its policy and take on the responsibility — or find ways to help residents pay the tab.”

Washington Park Profile –  Advocacy Group Proposes City Manage Sidewalk Repairs

February 4, 2016

“Sidewalks are the most basic infrastructure you need for a complete transit system, including connections to other transportation,” says WalkDenver Policy and Program Director Jill Locantore. “Everyone is a pedestrian and so sidewalks are the foundation of a great city.”

Out Front – On your feet, Denver!

February 3, 2016

“We are finding that people don’t ride [public transit] as much as we hoped because they can’t access it,” says local walking advocate Gosia Kung. “Sidewalks have not been funded in the last 50 or 60 years.”

5280 Magazine – The Imitation Game

January, 2016

“If pedestrians don’t have sidewalks, crosswalks, and lighting that connect them to transit stops, they’re not going to use public transportation. A 2015 WalkDenver survey revealed many of our first- and last-mile connections need upgrades, with sidewalks requiring the most help. In Denver, property owners pick up the tab for sidewalks, so wealthy areas can pay for nice ones and poorer neighborhoods can’t.”

Denver Post – It’s not about congestion, it’s about freedom

(Op-Ed by WalkDenver Policy and Program Director Jill Locantore)

May 23, 2015

“Solving congestion might be out of reach for Denver, but ultimately, congestion isn’t the problem we should be trying to solve. The bigger problem is that many Denver residents don’t have any options other than driving to their daily destinations.”

Streetsblog Denver – Why Denver Needs to Get Serious About Street Safety and Adopt Vision Zero

May 4, 2015

“We’re hopeful that with the input of the newly established committee, the city will start embracing strategies that more directly address pedestrian safety, particularly in low-income neighborhoods that tend to have the highest pedestrian fatality rates,” said Jill Locantore, policy director with pedestrian advocacy group WalkDenver. “We’re disappointed, however, that the city is continuing to prioritize automobile traffic by widening roadways, such as Broadway near I-25.”

Confluence Denver – Voice of Denver: It’s Time to Become a Walkable City 

(Commentary by WalkDenver Board Chair Gideon Berger)

April 15, 2015

“We face the challenge of how to create sustainable neighborhoods with the quality of life we desire as more people choose (or need) to live in the economic engines of 21st century America — our cities. WalkDenver, our only pedestrian advocacy organization (and whose board I chair), thinks one of the keys to meeting that challenge is by allowing Denver to be a city where walking is the easiest and best way to get around for many of our trips.”

Confluence Denver – 10 Denver Transportation Stories to Watch

February 25, 2015

WalkDenver’s Jill Locantore penned a DenverUrbanism post in Nov. 2014 that called Brighton Boulevard “a harrowing place for pedestrians” and argued that $26 million pegged for improvements in the 2015 budget offer an opportunity to turn the street into “a true pedestrian paradise.”

Washington Park Profile – Hey, Denver: On Your Feet – Or – Two Wheels!

January 14, 2015

While the bicycle community has been gaining traction in transportation planning circles over the past decade, pedestrians have been largely overlooked. Jill Locantore and compatriots at WalkDenver are out to change that dynamic.

KUNC – What 24 Hours of Walking Around Denver Looks Like

December 5, 2014

Jill Locantore, the director of WalkDenver, a nonprofit working to make Denver the most walkable city in the country, points out that there are very walkable areas in the city, but other areas are much less accessible. She said current Denver policy places responsibility for sidewalks squarely on the adjacent private property owner.

“So that’s resulted in a situation where we have a very inconsistent system where the sidewalk will literally start and stop on the same block, and also these gross disparities where wealthy neighborhoods have a beautiful well connected pedestrian network and low income neighborhoods that are the most dependent on walking as a form of transportation really have the least adequate pedestrian infrastructure,” Locantore said.

Confluence Denver – Civic Crowdfunding: Money from the Masses for Downtown Denver Bike Lane

November 5, 2014

For the Arapahoe bike lane, the DDP selected [the crowdfunding platform] ioby because it’s “not all or nothing and low fees,” says McCallum. A pair of other projects in Denver have raised funds on the platform: a pedestrian push in Jefferson Park from WalkDenver that raised $8,828 and a $5,746 project to make more playful bus stops in northwest Denver.

Confluence Denver – The Alliance Center, Colorado’s Hub for Sustainability

August 20, 2014

WalkDenver Policy and Program Director Jill Locantore touts the flexibility of working at the building. “You can pick and choose what you need,” she says.

Locantore, who works from a desk on the first floor, commends the ideas and work that went into the renovation. “I love the building,” she says. “It’s fantastic. They did a really nice job bringing in daylight,” adding, “Everything is nice — that’s the other nice thing about working in a freshly renovated building.”

But she says it’s more than a slick new workspace — it’s really about Powers’ vision of people working together. “Co-locating with all of these allied and like-minded organizations makes it so easy to collaborate.”

Confluence Denver – WALKscope helps Denver Address Walkability Weaknesses

July 10, 2014

WalkDenver introduced WALKscope, a new online app that allows people — anywhere in Denver and some surrounding areas — to quickly identify and add to a database of pedestrian issues. Already the organization is harnessing the app’s power to create reports on pedestrian issues near schools, to make them safer who students who walk, bike or skate to school.

Colorado Public Radio – In exercise-crazed Denver, city’s walkability surprisingly low 

April 17, 2014

Gosia Kung  is a Denver-based architect and urban planner whose organization WalkDenver advocates for a pedestrian-friendly environment. The organization has recently launched an app called WALKscope, which allows residents and visitors to collect data about where sidewalks are available and the safety of various intersections. According to WalkDenver, “This information will help create an inventory of pedestrian infrastructure in Denver, identify gaps and build the case for improvements.” 

Confluence Denver – Denver — Walkable City of the Future?

April 10, 2013

Gosia Kung is an architect and urban designer who started WalkDenver with fellow members of a Downtown Denver Partnership leadership program that was part of the “Work Well, Live Well” program. “There’s really nobody advocating for people on foot,” says Kung, whose firm, Kung Architecture, focuses on sustainable residential and commercial work. “Our group decided to do that.” Eighteen months later, it’s cultivated about 200 volunteers.

North Denver Tribune – 25th Ave poised for change

July 5, 2012

A lively urban experiment transformed drowsy West 25th Avenue for a day, but the street seems destined for a resurgence lasting longer than that.

Westword – Better Block project transforms Jefferson Park Spot

June 25, 2012

Sometimes, it takes a village. On Saturday, it took a neighborhood. From 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. that day, residents, community organizers and nonprofit volunteers gathered for Denver’s first Better Block project, which re-created West 25th Avenue from Federal Boulevard to Eliot Street. The makeover attracted more than 1,500 visitors to re-imagine the area as a more colorful, pedestrian-friendly environment — one that organizers hope to make a permanent reality.

KUVO – Making Denver Better, 1 Block At a Time

June 20, 2012

“Making Denver better one block at a time.” A lofty goal, but there’s no reason it won’t work here. That’s the view of architect and urban planner Gosia Kung, who is part of the neighborhood team behind this Saturday’s “Better Block Jefferson Park.”

5280 – Walk This Way

June, 2012

Every day, tens of thousands of Denverites and Mile High visitors stroll the bustling 16th Street Mall and the tree-lined sidewalks that crisscross Cherry Creek. But pedestrians aren’t as abundant elsewhere in our fair city where residents are quick to hop in their cars. A new organization called WalkDenver—founded by local architect Gosia Kung—aims to change that four-wheels-first habit.

Colorado Public Radio – Getting Denverites to Hit the Pavement

April 4, 2012

Today, our show focuses on walkability. We’ll look at efforts to get people walking in metro Denver. One approach is called the “Better Block Project.” This summer, a lifeless block in northwest Denver will be transformed into a bustling business district. The hope is to show people that making changes to an area can inspire folks to get out and walk. We’ll talk with Gosia Kung of WalkDenver, who is organizing the project. It’s planned for June 23rd on West 25th Avenue in north Denver, between Federal and Elliot. – WalkDenver – the antidote to car culture

March 13, 2012

There’s nothing like a beautiful spring-like day to get people outside walking.  Humans are built to walk.  It’s the original form of transportation, and millions of years later it still works fine.  Or would, if we actually walked for transportation.  Unfortunately the modern built environment has conspired to force everyone into a car.

Westword – Walk Denver, new nonprofit, pushes toward sustainable, pedestrian-friendly transportation

February 24, 2012

“A few months after meeting in coffee shops in July 2011, the group gained official nonprofit status and the name Walk Denver, modeled after it’s bicycle-friendly partner. Today, approximately fifteen volunteers and organizers front the group, which is financially sponsored by the Colorado Nonprofit Development Center. Profiled in the New York Times last week, Walk Denver has become both a player and an impetus in the city’s overall plan to advance options for sustainable transportation.”

The New York Times – Denver is Urged to Hit the Sidewalks

February 13, 2012

“It is the physical space of a city, Ms. Kung said on a recent walk through downtown, that creates a pedestrian’s view of the world. Ample sidewalks are crucial, she said, but they provide only the means of access to an environment that must then reward walkers through attractions like shopping and entertainment that cater specifically to foot traffic.”