The next step | AspenTimes.com
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The next step

Dear Editor:I am delighted that the voters of Aspen voted yes to add bus-only lanes from Buttermilk to the roundabout. I am sure that Aspen voters are just plain fed up with the traffic, noise, dust and hassle that are the current transportation woes. The residents of Aspen have a right to an elegant solution to these problems. They expressed themselves in this vote.The next step: determining the nature of the solution beyond the roundabout has been tossed into the air like a jump ball with the petition for another vote in November. Those who propose four lanes, with two for cars and two for HOV that “are no more restrictive” than the HOV lanes already in place on 82 are trying to fool us. We all know that the HOV lanes are nothing but two more traffic lanes. When they say they want to reserve space for light rail, they are only pandering to those who desire an environmentally elegant solution to these problems. We need elected city leaders, elected county leaders, representatives from the Skico, and RFTA to present a vision for a countywide transportation solution. A countywide solution must mean fewer cars on the road, not more. Aspen voters will need a comprehensive vision before being asked to vote on a solution. I believe there are two keys to this solution. The first rests with RFTA and will either be an advanced form of Bus Rapid Transit, or light rail. Because of the associated expense of the light rail infrastructure, the time frame for a solution and its flexibility to be converted to light rail at some future date, RFTA should give Bus Rapid Transit serious consideration or some combination of the two. The second key to a solution is better lift connection between the ski mountains. The ski company should make public a plan that would show possible connections between mountains and what development is required to make them affordable. Only with understanding of the key pieces of the transportation puzzle can Aspen voters make intelligent decisions about what they want their entrance to be. Robert PewWoody Creek


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