Letter: Thirteen suggestions to end gridlock
1. Roaring Fork Transportation Authority representatives should meet all aircraft arriving in Aspen, private and commercial, and direct passengers and crew to the luxurious quarter-million-dollar bus stop so they can ride a fast, fun and frequent bus into town.
2. Homeowners up Castle Creek, Maroon Creek, Red Mountain and on Highway 82 toward Difficult should be instructed to ride their bikes into town and leave their cars at home. They should, however, have the option of carpooling with their neighbors.
3. High Mountain Taxi needs to trade in its cars and adopt the Aspen equivalent of a rickshaw. The cab drivers would probably even appreciate the exercise.
4. Construction workers should leave their tools at the job sites and ride the buses to Aspen and back downvalley. Surely they all have their tools insured in the off chance of theft and vandalism.
5. Property maintenance workers should use RFTA to make their rounds to various home sites they manage. They can take their tools on the bus with them.
6. Maids should either ride bikes or the bus from home to home and lodge to lodge throughout the day. Cleaning supplies aren’t that heavy. Oreck vacuums only weigh 8 pounds.
7. Landscaping crews should be required to ride buses to various job sites. RFTA could keep the ski tubes on year-round to be used for rakes, shovels, etc. Workers could grab a bag of soil and a few plants to hold on their laps. With a little modification, bike racks could function for mowers.
8. Delivery trucks could stop at the Brush Creek bus exchange and offload to RFTA shuttles. If you’re expecting a delivery, just call Dial-a-Ride. It only costs a buck. Comes right to your door.
9. Bus lanes should be done away with so there are two lanes of traffic moving in either direction. RFTA bus drivers can be trained to follow the rules of the road. I think.
10. To improve traffic flows, HOV-only lanes should be available to all vehicles regardless of number of passengers. Period. HOV lanes never did make much sense anyway.
11. Pedestrian- and bicycle-only streets on the West End need to be opened. We’d all like vehicle-free streets so our children and pets can run freely, but that’s just a luxury this city can no longer afford. We need every street we have to accommodate all this new traffic.
12. Traffic should be allowed to merge onto 82 from the West End streets instead of funneling all traffic down Main Street. It will be a clusterf— for a while, but drivers would soon learn to graciously allow traffic to merge, like they do now on Main Street.
13. City Council and county commission could stop approving every construction permit submitted. A mega construction project creates congestion and extra traffic. Several mega construction projects create lots of congestion and extra traffic. They can learn to just say “no.” (A 12,000-square-foot residence in downtown Aspen? Really?)
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Before the season winds down this weekend, I wanted to take the time to extend some appreciation to the Aspen Skiing Co. As always, the grooming has been exceptional and the ski patrol has done…