Park City business group calls for aggressive traffic-fighting measures
The group that represents businesses along Main Street or just off the street has called for the development of a park-and-ride lot, something that would likely be a major project even for a municipal government that is stressing transit as a key step to reducing traffic.
The Historic Park City Alliance in a wide-ranging memo to Park City leaders broached the idea of a park-and-ride lot dedicated for people who work in the Main Street core. The memo was drafted and forwarded to Mayor Andy Beerman and the Park City Council amid the continuing discussions about traffic and parking. City Hall, Main Street, the transportation industry and people who live close to the commercial district are engaged in talks about topics like setting aside certain spots for taxis and shuttles to drop off and pick up passengers and the overall circulation of traffic on Main Street and in surrounding Old Town.
The memo addresses the concept of the spots for taxis and shuttles to drop off and pick up passengers, which was heavily debated at a recent City Council meeting, but it also delved further into issues that have long challenged the Main Street commercial district.
The section regarding the development of a park-and-ride lot for Main Street workers is especially intriguing since it addresses what many see as a crucial improvement that would be designed to reduce the number of workers who drive into the Main Street core, adding to the traffic.
The memo from the Historic Park City Alliance puts a park-and-ride lot into a category of investment that is needed before City Hall enacts further restrictions.
“Procurement, design, and development of a convenient and well-designed employee park and ride / shuttle lot with frequency and flexibility of service to meet seasonal, year round, and event specific needs,” the memo says.
The three-page memo, though, does not provide details. It does not discuss topics like the location or size of a park-and-ride lot like the one the Historic Park City Alliance desires. It also does not address costs.
The Historic Park City Alliance, meanwhile, makes a series of other requests or broaches other issues in the memo, which was drafted in August and retains importance as the discussions continue.
• seeking a “better strategy and infrastructure to capture visitor and destination trips and distribute them to the historic district efficiently where that is their preferred destination.” The memo wants “cooperative discussion about changes, replacement, or enhancement of satellite parking facilities and the level of transit service provided from those facilities.”
• a call for “recognition and provision of solutions for a workforce that is necessary to support our economy but that is more and more dispersed throughout the region due to housing costs and other economic pressures.”
• a desire for a “recognition of the cumulative impacts impacting traffic in and to the historic district that are and will continue to be heavily influence by dramatic changes in the regional development patterns due to new development outside the district and in some cases outside the municipal limits, annexation proposals, and other regional influences.”
It also notes the “conversion of commercial space within the district to uses with greater intensity of employee generation, parking and trip demand without adequate tools to mitigate those impacts.”
“In summary, we are willing partners to one more experiment in parking management to help meet community transportation goals through the designation of limited trial drop off / pick up zones,” the memo says. “But we are also adamant that before any subsequent steps are taken to restrict parking and transportation service in the historic district the Council and the community needs to take equally dramatic action in addressing the broader systemic community wide inputs that contribute to congestion and impacts to Park City neighborhoods.”
City Hall is attempting to craft plans to better manage traffic and circulation amid widespread complaints about the congestion as Park City enjoys a robust economy. The complaints stretch from the Main Street core to the state-highway entryways, making the related issues of traffic, circulation, parking and public transportation some of the most difficult at City Hall. Additional City Council discussions are expected in coming weeks.
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