Park City anticipates heavy traffic over five-week stretch |

Park City anticipates heavy traffic over five-week stretch

Park City officials hope people opt to use the free buses in coming weeks. City Hall is anticipating heavy traffic. The stop outside Holiday Village, shown, is usually a busy location for the transit system.
Jay Hamburger/Park Record

Park City officials are anticipating heavy traffic over a five-week stretch that started on Friday, a sign that City Hall expects solid business over an important period in the ski season.

In a release, the municipal government said the peak period for traffic is projected to run from Jan. 15 until Feb. 21. The dates cover the Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend and Presidents Day weekend, two traditionally busy three-day weekends. The Feb. 21 end date is the Sunday after Presidents Day.

The period outlined by City Hall is normally seen as a key time for business, with both of the holiday weekends attracting large crowds and the Sundance Film Festival in between the two holidays. Sundance this year will not have a live venue in Park City, tempering business expectations in January and likely leading to a significant decrease in traffic. There is hope, though, in the tourism industry that the holiday weekends and the weeks in between will be solid with skiers.

The City Hall release outlines that traffic usually increases between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. and then again from 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. The two rush hours are notorious, and backups sometimes stretch from the entryways to the base areas at Park City Mountain Resort and Deer Valley Resort. Skiers and snowboarders compete for space on the roads with commuters during the two rush hours, long a frustration for the community.

The release from the municipal government encourages carpooling, riding buses and schedule adjustment if possible. It also says City Hall plans to remove an unspecified amount of parking from Park Avenue “to better accommodate transit and vehicles through the narrow roadway.”

Officials encourage pedestrians to cross streets in crosswalks, say double parking “backs up traffic and adds to the congestion” and caution that “Old Town streets are very narrow and not made for through traffic.”

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