Park City crowd interested in bicycle issues: ‘Current bike lane on Park Ave makes no sense’
City Hall-hosted open house designed to introduce wide range of projects and programs
One Parkite apparently continues to question a bicycle lane on a busy stretch of Park Avenue two years after it was created.
Another person in Park City wants additional places to leave a bicycle.
City Hall on Tuesday held an open house covering a broad range of municipal projects and programs, and a table dedicated to bicycling routes appeared to garner some of the most interest from the crowd.
Park City officials for decades have invested heavily in pedestrian and bicycling routes across the community. Leaders see the routes as reducing traffic and curbing emissions since they offer an alternative to driving. Although the ideals underpinning the efforts generally win praise, there have long been questions about the detailed routes or the way in which they are designed.
The open house drew a medium-sized crowd to the patio outside the Park City Library. The people moved from table to table as they learned about the municipal work plan. Some who spent time studying the information about the bicycling routes left unsigned messages for staffers to consider. The messages, written on sticky notes, covered several topics.
One of the intriguing notes seemed to address the Park Avenue bicycle lane, which dates to the spring of 2021. City Hall reconfigured an important stretch of the road north of the 9th Street intersection to include a bicycle lane. It quickly drew concern at the time, with some worried about safety with the bicyclists riding so close to the vehicular traffic on the two-lane section of road.
The message left on the sticky note regarding Park Avenue was notable: “Current bike lane on Park Ave makes no sense; is confusing + confusion causes accidents,” it said.
The section of Park Avenue where the bicycle lane is located essentially connects the southern reaches of Old Town, including the Main Street core, with points north toward Holiday Village. The lane passes the Park City Library, the Library Field and City Park. There has not been widespread public discourse about the bicycle lane since the months after it was created.
Others at the event on Tuesday also addressed bicycling issues with input that was left on the sticky notes. The messages included:
• “more protection on bike lanes, height on barriers”
• “Love bike bells and bike safety education”
• “better driver education”
• “must walk bike thru tunnel,” the message said, noting “blind curves”
Additional messages addressed a connection to one of the sides of S.R. 224 and the desire for a “bike riders guide.”
Someone also addressed the conflict between people riding electric bicycles, or e-bikes, and riders of human-powered bicycles. There has been concern in recent years about the use of e-bikes on trails, which prompted the message that was left on Tuesday.
“0 ebikes on single or double,” the person said in the message, referring to categories of trails.
The open house is seen as an opportunity for someone to learn about the disparate municipal programs and projects in a single setting. City Hall staffers spent time explaining their work as the crowd stopped at the various tables. Mayor Nann Worel and at least two members of the Park City Council were in attendance.
Possible improvements to bus stops was one of the other topics that drew interest from the crowd on Tuesday. A sticky note suggested an upgrade at a bus stop on Park Avenue toward the northern end of Park City, where, according to the note, people are “waiting in snow.” Someone wanted “digital real-time signage” at a stop at the Park City Municipal Athletic & Recreation Center while another message sought “better signage to indicate stop closed” when buses are not scheduled at a location.
The fare-free bus system in Park City is another important measure designed to reduce traffic in neighborhoods as well as on streets serving the mountain resorts, Main Street and other commercial centers.
One of the stations, addressing the spring runoff season and other public works topics, meanwhile, was outfitted with props. The staffers placed sandbags in front of the table, alluding to the efforts to guard against flooding in Park City as the significant winter snowpack continues to melt. The municipal government has distributed thousands of sandbags and continues to make them available.
Park City Council contest draws nine, some with established names and others with political newcomer status
The period when candidates needed to file campaign paperwork closed on Wednesday. There was not a rush of interest in the final hours, but the field is an intriguing one nonetheless.
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