Forward thinking | AspenTimes.com

Forward thinking

Dear Editor:

A number of years back, as the town of Snowmass Village worked through the original PUD for Base Village, they stipulated a very effective and forward-thinking policy; simply stated, they required all Base Village employees to park off-site and use alternative means of transportation to reach work.

The thinking at the time, as I understand it, was twofold. The town was worried about the infrastructure of Snowmass Village handling this new influx of both tourists and employees, and was concerned about the environmental impact of increased commuters.

Today, traveling via RFTA each day to my new job at the Viceroy, I have witnessed the fruits of their labor. In various conversations with my colleagues at the hotel, including our HR department, which has worked in concert with RFTA to ensure that everyone has access to a bus pass, I have seen this vision realized and, furthermore, appreciated.

Many colleagues of mine whom have never taken the bus to work, even some who live right here in Snowmass Village, have hopped upon the RFTA or Village Shuttle for the first time. Even more heartening is that nearly all the experiences I have heard about have been positive, with many saying that before they thought the bus would be a great inconvenience but were now appreciating its consistency, cleanliness and safety (especially on snowy days).

There are some inherent challenges, especially surrounding colleagues arriving early in the morning and leaving late at night, but these are being met with positive problem-solving and brainstorming. Crafting policy that encourages and even at times requires a change in habits to benefit the environment does work, and I wanted to thank the town of Snowmass Village, RFTA and my colleagues here at the Viceroy for taking a small step in the right direction toward reducing our impact on the environment.

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Ryan Johnson

director of sustainability, Viceroy Snowmass

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