Funds from the newly approved daily lift ticket tax will go toward creating transportation and parking solutions in Breckenridge. The results from a recent poll have sparked new innovative ideas and discussion, making a catch-all parking solution in the form of a new structure unlikely.
Breckenridge hired two outside sources, Nelson/Nygaard Consulting Associates and DTJ Design, to help gather information and facilitate discussion about the town’s parking and transportation needs. The outside sources polled locals and found an emphasis on expanding walking, biking, and public transportation over expanding downtown parking options.
The discussions stemming from the presentation of these results occurred in two sessions, with a total of 80 residents, on April 25th. Discussions aimed to find ways to provide a better guest experience, increase access to downtown business, and to reduce traffic.
Several innovative ideas arose, including:
- Place tight roundabouts in town to slow traffic and make it easier for pedestrians to cross the street.
- Create new parking lots outside of town, allowing people to get downtown via public transportation, raising efficiency.
- Extend the gondola to new parking lots outside of town to increase the ease of access to the mountain and downtown without clogging the streets.
These discussions made it obvious that locals did not think it smart to invest all of its parking and transportation funds into one project, like a large downtown parking structure. Instead, by looking at the current situation from a macro-level, a series of solutions ranging in price and ease of implementation arose. A majority favored the creation of a new parking structure outside of town and increasing open space areas downtown.
Jeffrey Tumlin, the director of strategy for Nelson/Nygaard Consulting remarked that providing parking solutions to appease the needs of locals and those of tourists aren’t mutually exclusive. He said: “You don’t have to pit them against each other. You can create a solution that benefits everyone — and that is an extraordinary advantage.”
Breckenridge will take these poll results and discussion topics into consideration in its creation of a parking and transportation action plan, which will be presented to the public on June 13th. The June meeting will provide locals another opportunity to provide input and feedback before the action plan goes to town council later in the summer.
Considering the opinions and needs of local residents in its creation of an action plan to benefit the community is a great initiative that makes it very likely that Breckenridge’s final plan will be a comprehensive solution that achieves its multifaceted goal.