Sundance parking: higher prices, heavy restrictions and outright bans
Park City has written higher parking prices, heavy restrictions on parking and some outright parking bans into the Sundance Film Festival script.
The City Hall-controlled parking lots and garages are sought-after locations during the jammed festival as large crowds head to the city to see films, celebrity gawk and party. Parking, though, is heavily restricted during the festival, often leaving drivers circling Main Street looking for a spot. A celebrity sighting sometimes seems to be a more common occurrence than a sighting of an available parking spot during Sundance.
City Hall earlier enacted the first parking restrictions, in the Bob Wells Plaza lot, for the Acura Festival Village. The lot is scheduled to reopen Feb. 5.
The Brew Pub parking lot was slated to be closed on Tuesday with a reopening planned on Feb. 2. City Hall operations will be staged in the Brew Pub lot. Other parking restrictions will be in place on Main Street, Heber Avenue and Park Avenue between the Heber Avenue and 11th Street intersections. The parking closures are designed to ensure traffic is able to flow and keep space clear for emergency vehicles.
Park City leaders and Sundance organizers have long encouraged festival-goers to ride buses or walk between the venues and Main Street, but drivers descend on Main Street nonetheless. The backups in Old Town are usually especially bad during the opening weekend. Sundance opens on Thursday with the first full slate of activities scheduled on Friday.
City Hall offers public parking with a festival pricing plan. The higher prices are partially designed to discourage drivers from heading into Old Town during Sundance. Parking in the China Bridge garage is priced at $40 per day from Thursday until Monday with cash preferred. From Jan. 29 until Feb. 2, the price for China Bridge parking is $5 per hour with a maximum of $40 between 11 a.m. and 2 a.m. The flagpole lot at the base of Swede Alley is also available between Thursday and Feb. 2 at a price of $40 daily.
There are free-parking options at the Richardson Flat park-and-ride lot from 7 a.m. until 2:30 a.m. from Thursday until Feb. 2. A free bus will operate between the lot and Park City High School, where someone can board the festival or City Hall bus routes. Free parking is also available at Park City Mountain Resort and Deer Valley Resort from 4 p.m. until 2 a.m. The Sandridge lots off Marsac Avenue are available without charge as are the lots outside McPolin Elementary School and Treasure Mountain Junior High. The school lots are available on weekends and after 4 p.m. on weekdays.
Privately held parking lots are typically available during Sundance as well with a range of prices depending on the location. A City Hall flier outlining parking options indicates the cost at the private lots ranges from $20 to $100 per day. The owners of many other privately held lots, some in prime locations for Sundance activities, aggressively protect the spaces from festival-goers, posting signs outlining that cars not belonging to customers will be towed.
More information about parking and other City Hall festival efforts is available on the municipal website, http://www.parkcity.org.
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The Park City Police Department last week received at least two reports involving cases of different natures at construction locations. In one of the cases, the police were told 1,000 construction workers had left vehicles on the street.