Time running out for Old Town people to get their art fest access passes | ParkRecord.com

Time running out for Old Town people to get their art fest access passes

by Jay Hamburger OF THE RECORD STAFF

People who live in Old Town and plan to drive out of the neighborhood this weekend had best stop by the Kimball Art Center by early Friday morning.

If they do not pick up access passes by then, driving home could be difficult for them.

City Hall, as it does annually during the Park City Kimball Arts Festival on Main Street, restricts traffic in much of the neighborhood to people who live in Old Town or who work on either Main Street or Swede Alley.

People in the neighborhood will need to have the access passes starting at 7 a.m. Friday, earlier than what had been traditional, since the festival nowadays opens on Friday night.

The access passes are available at the Kimball Art Center during regular business hours. The art center is open from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. on weekdays and from noon until 5 p.m. on weekends. The Kimball’s number is 649-8882.

"We typically distribute a few thousand," said Chris Crowley, who directs the festival’s operations for the Kimball.

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People who live in Old Town south of the Deer Valley Drive-Park Avenue intersection are required to have the access passes to drive to their homes. The zone includes heavily populated streets like Park Avenue and Woodside Avenue.

Festival organizers and Park City officials stress that the access passes do not act as parking passes as well, meaning that City Hall’s Old Town parking zones remain in effect even if a driver has an access pass. People who park in the zones without the proper sticker could be ticketed.

A separate access pass is needed for people who work on Main Street or Swede Alley and plan to drive to work.

"Most folks do understand," Crowley said, adding, "We’re not here to prevent anybody from getting to their home or place of employment."

The access passes are normally checked during the hours of the festival. Hours are from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Friday, from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Saturday and from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Sunday.

City Hall and festival organizers have long relied on the access passes to tightly regulate traffic in Old Town. Without the passes, it is feared that people heading to the festival would overrun Old Town streets as they try to find a parking spot close to Main Street. Parking is frequently tight in the neighborhood surrounding Main Street on a normal day.

The organizers will operate satellite parking lots for people heading to Main Street for the festival, with buses running between Main Street and the lots. They will be located in the Deer Valley Resort Snow Park parking lots and the Park City Mountain Resort lot at the intersection of Lowell Avenue and Silver King Drive.

"We are very serious about managing the traffic and congestion in town," Crowley said.

Parking will also be available on Saturday and Sunday in the China Bridge garage, with City Hall charging $10. Attendants will only accept cash.

Meanwhile, the festival setup is scheduled to start early on Wednesday. Max Paap, who manages special events for City Hall, said Heber Avenue between Main Street and Park Avenue will close to traffic at 7 a.m. on Wednesday. Main Street will close to traffic in several stages beginning at 4 a.m. on Friday.

Paap expects Main Street will reopen to drivers at 11 p.m. on Sunday. The stretch of Heber Avenue that will be closed is anticipated to reopen to traffic at 7 p.m. on Monday, he said.