Horizon Drive District wants curb appeal

Businesses in the Horizon Drive District want to spruce up the corridor and make it feel more like a neighborhood, according to preliminary results of a recent survey.

Mesa State College students handed out surveys in March to business owners in the district, which stretches from G Road to Grand Junction Regional Airport. Students also conducted some face-to-face interviews to learn what amenities and improvements businesses on Horizon Drive would like to have. According to Mesa State business instructor Georgann Jouflas, who organized the survey, the overwhelming response was that business owners want more curb appeal.

“They’d like to see a nicer look. It determines whether people continue into town,” Jouflas said.

Respondents said they wanted more safety features, including crosswalks to help people safely cross four to five lanes of traffic. They also want more retail and restaurants and more small businesses, especially ones that could allow people who work in the area to do some light shopping on their way home from the office.

Twenty-two percent of the more than 240 businesses who received surveys responded to them. Victoria Patsantaras, district representative, said she hopes to keep collecting input and get higher response rates.

District members, who pay a mill levy rate in their property taxes to benefit the district, hope to work with the city of Grand Junction and possibly the Colorado Department of Transportation to bring new features to the thoroughfare. Those features would include medians with trees, crosswalks that allow people to pause in a median, bus pullouts and eventually roundabouts at G Road and at the Interstate 70 ramps.

It may be years before the district or the city has money for the improvements, Board Director Lynne Sorlye said. But the Clarion Inn general manager said she believes it’s important for the district to look forward and discuss items such as pocket parks, walking paths and improved sidewalks along the corridor.

“We have to look to the future and see what kind of feel we want, what’s important to people,” Sorlye said.


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