Snowmass Town Council work session recap: Updates on proposed mall transit center; town park redesign
During a roughly 90-minute work session Monday, Snowmass Town Council heard updates on a few ongoing town projects, including the proposed mall transit center and Town Park reconfiguration. Here’s the recap:
TOWN EXPLORING ‘OPTION 5’ FOR MALL TRANSIT CENTER
Town Council members got a peek at a modified design for the proposed mall transit center, known as Option 5, at its work session Feb. 10.
Before working with S.E.H consultants to create an architectural rendering and better cost estimates of the new option, Clint Kinney, town manager, and David Peckler, town transportation director, explained that staff wanted to ensure Option 5 was a step in the right direction for the proposed transit center.
“We’re hoping to land a visual for you much like we had in the last packet but we want to make sure we’re designing what you want, not guessing at what you want,” Peckler said.
Town Council gave town staff the OK to pursue Option 5 in November after council members and community members expressed reservations about the mass and scale of the Option 4 Village Mall transit center plan.
As previously reported, the Option 4 design included a bus platform at the mall level with four Roaring Fork Transportation Authority bus bays and six local shuttle bus bays, along with a roughly 60-space parking area and roadway below the bus platform that will replace existing Lot 6.
The new Option 5 design is largely the same, but includes a smaller bus platform, reduced by roughly 10 feet along the north/south axis, and pulls the connecting road from Upper Brush Creek Road to Lower Carriage Way out from beneath the platform deck.
Town Council briefly discussed the new option, which they are set to see again in more detail with a formal presentation from consultants at the March 2 regular meeting.
“I think it’s a vast improvement,” Councilman Bill Madsen said. “I think it’s looking really good and the more I look at the RFTA and shuttle bus depot we have now, we can’t get this going fast enough.”
TWO DESIGNS TO MOVE FORWARD FOR TOWN PARK
On top of receiving an update on the proposed mall transit center project, Town Council also got an update on the proposed redesign of Town Park.
At the Nov. 11 special Town Council meeting, Andy Worline, town parks, recreation and trails director, presented the top two Town Park redesign plans of the five originally proposed that were most supported by local stakeholders: Option 3, which slightly reorients the rodeo arena and increases field space; and Option 5, a hybrid option that moves the rodeo arena to where the softball field is now and significantly increases field space and parking.
At the Feb. 10 meeting, Worline aimed to gain more feedback from Town Council on the top two conceptual design options, both of which town staff hopes to pursue in its efforts to narrow the project focus.
As before, Town Council voiced support for Option 3. But as the town’s Parks, Open Space, Trails and Recreation Board overwhelmingly has voiced support for Option 5, Kinney explained, town staff hopes to move forward with both options.
“I’ve sat in POSTR board meetings to know they love (Option) 5, I’ve sat in council meetings to know that you’re leaning toward (Option) 3, it’s our recommendation that you guys get more information,” Kinney said.
“We think the two best options have been selected and that more data at this point would be more helpful.”
Council ultimately supported the direction of moving forward with both options, but emphasized the importance of continuing to include Jazz Aspen Snowmass in its planning decisions moving forward, as the nonprofit said it is considering a change of venue for its Labor Day Experience other than Town Park in 2021.
Town staff said it plans to use the some of the $100,000 budgeted for the Town Park redesign project this year to pursue more detailed versions of Option 3 and Option 5 with its contractors, which will be brought back before council at a regular meeting when completed.