Fort Collins bans smoking near parks, government buildings and other public areas

FORT COLLINS, Colo. - Smoking will soon be illegal in many parts of Fort Collins, including all parks, around government buildings and at city golf courses to start.

The first of a two part smoking ban is taking effect September 1 in the city. The city wants to reduce secondhand smoke in public areas and improve the appearance of the area. 

The city council adopted an ordinance in February that will eventually ban smoking in a portion of downtown. The second phase of the project will begin January 1.

Opinion is split on the plan.

"It's absolutely not enforceable," said Zach Roberts, who works downtown. "Thiry percent of the businesses in Old Town are bars and restaurants. And they do how much business at night? That's just what people do. They're going to go out and smoke."

"I'm actually pretty pleased with it," said Mindy Bryant, who is mother to two young boys. "Because I'm a proponent of taking away secondhand smoke around children and parks and when you're walking around downtown."

Other areas where smoking will be banned are on public transportation facilities, city benches and all hotels and motels in the city.

The city is asking for voluntary compliance to these rules. They don't have plans to hand out tickets to violators. Though, if it gets bad enough, a misdemeanor can be issued. 

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