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Large Urban Vote Center

Faith Evangelical Free Church

Faith Evangelical Free Church

Faith Evangelical Free Church is located on a major thoroughfare in a heavily populated section of Fort Collins, Colorado. Fort Collins is a mixed urban and rural city with a population of approximately 125,000 and approximately 86,000 registered voters. This Vote Center processed over 2,800 voters on Election Day with a staff of less than 30 poll workers. A larger Vote Center such as this must be designed to accommodate a high volume of voters steadily throughout Election Day.

Exterior View of Vote Center

Exterior View of Vote Center

The parking lot of the Vote Center is well-lighted with several large overhead lamps. The lot has several designated accessible parking spots and van accessible parking for voters with disabilities. Those designated parking areas are closest to the building.

Exterior View of Voting Area Entrance

Exterior View of Voting Area Entrance

The picture above shows the main entrance/drop-off area of the Vote Center. The voting area is directly inside these doors. All walkways are more than 36-inches wide with non-slip surfaces and curb cuts for wheelchair and walker access. Additional signs are placed outside the Vote Center to help direct voters to the main entrance.

Exterior View of Voting Area Exit

Exterior View of Voting Area Exit

The door on the left of the large glass enclosure serves as the exit from the voting area. By having different doors designated as entrances and exits, voter traffic flows easily through the Vote Center.

Interior View of Main Voting Area

Interior View of Main Voting Area

Interior View of Main Voting Area

Note that the entire voting area is on the ground floor of the Vote Center. The stairs visible in the picture above are roped off on Election Day. No voter has to ascend any stairs at any point of the voting process.

Layout of Voting Area

Layout of Voting Area

The Vote Center layout is integral to a successful Election Day. The Elections Department staff works with the Vote Center facility staff weeks prior to the election to determine the most efficient layout possible. Using everything from measuring tape and common sense to digital cameras and layout software, the Elections Department is able to ensure voters an accessible and efficient experience on Election Day.

In the picture above, you can see the actual layout and flow of this Vote Center. Voters enter the main entryway and are immediately met by the Greeter. The Greeter queues voters in line, reminding voters to have their signature card and proper ID available for processing. If the voter did not bring proper identification , the Greeter directs the voter to the provisional ballot station, where the voter is assisted by a Provisional Judge on the provisional voting process. If a voter forgot his/her signature card, the Greeter also helps the voter fill out a blank signature card.

The voter is then queued to the Computer Station where a Computer Judge checks the voter ID and processes the voter using an electronic poll book. The average voter is processed in 30-45 seconds.

Voters are then queued to the Ballot Station where a Ballot Judge provides each voter with the correct ballot style. The ballot judge instructs the voter how to correctly complete the ballot, and queues the voter for the next available voting booth.

Once the voter has completed his/her optical scan paper ballot, he/she proceeds to cast his/her ballot. Larimer County uses a paper ballot optical scan voting system to tally votes cast. An election judge is available to assist voters, make sure the optical scan correctly accepts the voter's ballot and direct voters to the exit.

Even during high volume times of the day (early morning, lunch and after business hours), the average voter exists the Vote Center within 20 minutes of arrival. A Vote Center such as this can easily process 3,000 voters on Election Day.

Background Image: Loveland Bike Trail by Sharon Veit. All rights reserved.