Editorial: Vail buses better be easy
Vail Daily Editorial Board
Vail, CO Colorado
Vail ” the town and the resort ” faces another decision in which it can remain something more like a “real town.”
Where bus stops in Lionshead are located may not seem like a major issue, but the town and the resort are not quite in agreement over where to build a new bus hub in Vail’s “other village.”
The town had wanted the bus stop at a new affordable housing complex the ski company is building on a parking lot near the end of the Lionshead pedestrian bridge. But the town doesn’t like the $14 million Vail Resorts says it will cost. Moreover, the ski company says it will take longer to build the apartments if a bus station is part of the project.
Vail Resorts says the EverVail project, on western edge of Lionshead, is a better place for a bus hub. The town says that’s too far out and that there should be bus stops at both developments.
To remain any semblance of a real town with real, middle-class people, there has to be mass transit. And for anyone to commit to riding mass transit, it has to be convenient. In other words, the bus has to stop relatively close to where its riders live and work.
If an employee has to trudge a long distance through the snow after getting off work waiting tables, tending bar or teaching skiing, that employee may just buy a car or go find work in a ski resort where the buses are more convenient. (That employee may leave town anyway when he or she can’t find a place to park the new car.)
And if the town and the resort are as committed to environment as they say they are in press releases, they should swallow the extra expense and make buses as easy to ride as possible.
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A Nov. 30 to Governor Polis and the Eagle County Commissioners from Beaver Creek Resorts Company – as well as the towns of Vail, Avon, Eagle and Minturn – requests a variance program which would allow businesses to remain open.