Downtown restaurants owners and the city of Durango responded quickly early in the summer to eliminate two traffic lanes on Main Avenue between College and 12th streets to create curb-side seating areas. Light barriers went up, with most restaurants constructing wooden platforms and waist-high sides for their seating areas.
The bump-outs have been considered a great success and will be up until early October.
What is next? It’s good to hear that the bump-outs will be back next year, and with more attractive and more standardized appearances. Our choice would be to let the restaurant owners, a creative bunch, take the lead in coming up with the improvements and let the city affirm their work. We have heard that economic grants might be available, as well. That would help make more elaborate structures possible.
Experiment with a one-way loop that would include Second Avenue? Fine, but keep the speed limit low, as now, and enforce it.
The virus is less of a threat in open air; the bump-outs take advantage of that.