Park City outlines overhaul of controversial drop-and-load zones
Park City officials on Friday intend to overhaul the controversial drop-and-load program in the Main Street core, outlining plans early in the week to create a large zone out of several smaller ones on a heavily traveled stretch of the street.
City Hall staffers described the plan in a report to Mayor Andy Beerman and the Park City Council drafted in anticipation of a meeting on Thursday. The staffers plan to consolidate the drop-and-load zones on the upper stretch of Main Street into a single zone. That zone would run on the east side of Main Street from approximately the 300 block of Main Street, outside 350 Main restaurant, to the 500 block of the street, outside the Park City Museum. The zone would encompass upward of 30 parking spots, many more than any current individual zone.
The plan calls for the current drop-and-load zone on Main Street at 7th Street to remain in place and recommends against introducing zones on the west side of Main Street. Staffers also want to continue to offer drop-and-load zones without a permit required in places like Swede Alley and the Brew Pub lot.
The concept would reduce the number of drop-and-load zones from nine to two. The nine current zones involve 50 parking spots while the reconfigured program would involve 40 spots.
A change would be aimed at streamlining the drop-and-load program less than three months after its debut as the holidays approached. The program is designed to reduce the amount of congestion in the Main Street core and improve safety. A vehicle must have a City Hall-issued permit, known as a DLS permit, to stop in one of the zones after 5 p.m. and they must be dropping people off or picking them up to occupy one of the spots. The transportation and lodging industries have appeared to be the primary users of the zones. The zones would be available for anyone to park for 15 minutes without charge until 5 p.m.
“We believe we have strong support from the for-hire and lodging industries. As with everything, you can’t make everyone happy all the time. We should expect some push back from some who purchased a DLS parking permit because we are reducing total number of DLS spots by 5-10,” the City Hall report says.
There have been numerous violations as the Park City Police Department has enforced the zones during the ski season. The police have issued warnings and tickets and ordered a series of tows of vehicles left in the zones without the required permit. The cases continued in the last week.
The drop-and-load program is a pilot for the ski season. The report to the elected officials, though, indicates that staffers intend to continue the program on a year-round basis.
It is not clear if the mayor and City Council will discuss the drop-and-load program at the meeting on Thursday. A hearing is not scheduled, but the elected officials allow public input at each meeting. The meeting is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. at the Marsac Building.
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The Park City Ice Arena is expected to temporarily close later in 2021 to allow crews to replace the ice surface and perform other maintenance work, one of a series of projects City Hall plans to outline at an upcoming open house. It will be an in-person event.