Wierd, I also have High Blood pressure.
There are numerous recommendation I would have:
another train over/underpass by Duff and Main
syncing up traffic lights more
finally connect Grand down to Airport or S16th
1. Duff Underpass. This has been proposed to council at least twice in the past 10-12 years. The last time it was proposed, 'Main Street' shut it down at the council level. They thought it would hurt business because they'd lose their direct connection to Duff if an underpass was installed.
2. Syncing up traffic lights. This is a little more difficult for Ames traffic. There aren't any one-ways like Des Moines. Also, there are different traffic peaks with different speeds (especially along Lincoln Way--University traffic peaks sooner and doesn't have a clearly defined morning peak as other places). Without one-way traffic, which direction do you give priority to? As you know, Duff is busy in both directions during the rush times.
3. Connecting Grand to SE 16th. This will likely happen sometime. The right-of-way is already purchased. There needs to be an earmark for this to happen, as it is a big project for the City to fund themselves (notably the bridge portion). There is also planning in the 25 year horizon for it to head to Airport Road, but I don't see that scenario as very likely due to Highway 30.
I've been a student of Iowa State and a resident of Ames, and loved my experience in both capacities. However, this survey does nothing but remind me about how selfish the city can be. Iowa State University is the catalyst for most of the cultural activities in Ames - shows, concerts, speakers, sports, festivals - yet the city seems determined to demonstrate its power by passing ordinances that adversely impact the university and its students, staff, and faculty.
Ames is a great city, but it seems hellbent on shooting itself in the foot at times.
Biggest thing ames could do would be to get more jobs in ames. A lot of people would love to stick around or live closer to ames, but the jobs just arent there.
Traffic isnt an issue in a 'rush hour' sense... its more of an issue in a 'its a pain in the *** to get anywhere' sense. And forget it all if it snows an inch... the snowplows, when they are there, often dont put blade to pavement and leave a layer of snow that quickly just turns to ice..
As for campustown, i could see some benefit in improving it. But dont try to shoehorn in types of business that arent there. Make it an entertainment district the whole city can be proud of. Bars, Restaurants, and even a movie theater. Smaller version of power and light might be a theme to start with.
As far as other areas the city could improve... the Grand to Duff to 30 area is so haphazard. Giant signs everywhere, congested traffic.. no unified development anywhere there. Of course that is a consequence of the resistance to growth ames has had over the years.
The problem in Ames is that our city staff and city council give Main Street's opposition too much weight on this, instead of listening to the citizens as a whole, who clearly want an underpass/overpass at Duff.
Ames council gives way too much weight to any small vocal opposition, no matter the issue. (One exception: Carr Pool)
Immediate improvements that could be made:
- Underpass like on Grand on Duff
- Finish the block of road that isn't paved to make University to Duff 4 lane
- Turning lane so Lincoln Way doesn't become a 2 lane road all the way through Ames. If you have to turn left on Kellogg, you're f'd. Duff is a mess, but it's still LOADS better than Lincoln Way
- Traffic lights on 24th at Northwestern and ????? (I can't remember the other random stop sign)
- Someone needs to reprogram some of the side street lights. Beach/Lincoln Way is a terribly long light, as are Ash, Lynn, etc. with Lincoln Way.
Old Town in Fort Collins is really nice, and the city needs to go tour downtown Lawrence kansas to get ideas on how to make our downtown better.
There are way to many slumlords in town that do not keep their houses, apartments, business up to snub, instead they let it go and still charge the **** out of you. Jesus and most bars bathrooms are just gross as hell too. Ames is starting to go down the road of crap and the city council is WAY to conservative to do anything about it.
Also, get more jobs here for younger people to stay!!!