Letter: A four-lane solution
As the summer season comes to a close, the traffic backup at the entrance will diminish, and Aspen will once again forget that it has a problem. Then, in December, we start the whole cycle over again.
A few weeks ago, The Aspen Times featured a 1,100-word article on the supposed “traffic problem” without once mentioning that the actual problem is inadequate highway capacity at the entrance to town (“Aspen traffic sees steady increase over last five years,” July 20). One could easily think it was a case of journalistic malpractice.
However, the Aspen Daily News then provided its own version of the situation — which was no better in terms of providing useful information (“City Council eyes futuristic traffic solutions for Aspen,” Aug. 10). In order to come up with a really scary-sounding statistic, the Daily News used the average traffic volume for one month: July. July has for years been the busiest traffic month of the year. The scary number reported was 27,555 vehicle trips at the two-lane section of Main Street at the S-curves.
The Colorado Department of Transportation reports annual average daily traffic counts on its website. In other words, its figures include the really slow traffic months such as April and May along with the higher-traffic months. Despite this softening of the scariness, the state reports that there is a daily average of 28,000 vehicle trips on Main Street at the Garmisch Street intersection.
For traffic alarmists, the annual average daily traffic at Garmisch should be much scarier than the peak number at the S-curves — except that nobody has ever seen a traffic jam originating at this four-lane section of Main Street. The reason nobody has ever seen a traffic jam originating at Garmisch and Main is because Aspen has a perfectly ordinary, and totally manageable, amount of traffic wherever there are four lanes to handle it. There are tens of thousands of four-lane streets, boulevards and highways all over the world that handle the same traffic volumes as those found in Aspen without the least difficulty.
The collusion between the print media and the local political establishment to manipulate this issue is as inexplicable as it is obvious.
David Bach recently hosted me on his “Bach Talk” interview program on KNFO. You can listen to our discussion at the link provided on the home page of EntranceSolution.com. If you spend a half hour listening, you literally won’t recognize what you’re hearing. It’s called reality.