Rifle plans to expand and move bus park-and-ride
As Rifle’s efforts to improve its entrance to downtown continue, city officials have agreed to move the downtown bus park-and-ride in a land swap that’s meant to open up the area for new business.
At its Feb. 20 meeting, Rifle City Council approved a land swap agreement between the Colorado Department of Transportation and Rifle Depot owner Glen Larner, moving the park-and-ride just north of the railroad tracks on the Rifle Depot property. The current parking area would then be open for future development.
“I have to say I’m pretty excited to see that,” Rifle Mayor Barbara Clifton said at the council meeting. “That’s something the city has been working on for some time,” she said, referring to city leaders’ vision for a revitalized Rifle downtown gateway.
Plans to improve Rifle’s entryway have been discussed by city officials for some time, as the construction of the new Wendy’s restaurant is set to begin any day.
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The project, paid for in part by city funds to improve the public infrastructure on the site, is one of the first steps in improving the southern entrance to the downtown area.
Clifton also added that she’s excited for the park-and-ride to grow in size.
“This is something we have been talking about for a while, so it’s good to see we are moving forward,” Mayor Pro Tem Theresa Hamilton said
Planning Director Nathan Lindquist said it will be a multistep process over a couple of years to complete the project, but the goal is to create a better bus stop area for Rifle at the new location.
He said he expects the new facility to have around 175 parking spaces, compared with the 60 spaces at the current location.
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Wayne Hall took a job as an air traffic controller at the Aspen-Pitkin County Airport in 2003 thinking he would stay for a short time. Instead he stayed for nearly 17 years and was promoted up to the position of air traffic manager. He reflected on the experience upon retirement.