Where I Stand:
○ Focus development into the urban core of Jackson and Teton Village.
○ Remove parking requirements from new development.
○ Connect and expand our roads.
○ Fund multimodal transportation options where there is high return on investment.
Jackson Hole is suffering from traffic overload. It might be the most disturbing impact of the rapid growth we have undergone. For years the community has fought to keep our roads narrow and unconnected in an effort to preserve our rural / small town character, and as a back handed way to limit growth. Unfortunately, two lane roads are not so charming when you are stuck in a 5 mile long traffic jam, and the growth happened anyway. The blossoming of Teton Village and the increase in commuter traffic has reduced our roads to unacceptably low levels of service. Tourist and locals are frustrated, because we can’t get where we want to go.
The recently passed Integrated Transportation Plan (ITP) had some good concepts, but is fatally flawed, because it overestimates the usefulness of alternative modes of transportation and underestimates the value of the automobile for our quality of life. The ITP recognizes that START only handles 1% of our valley’s car trips, and that if we achieve the ITP’s overly ambitious vision of quadrupling bus ridership in the next 20 years START will still only handle less than 4% of trips. To accomplish this goal the Community Priorities Fund and it’s General Excise Tax increase envisions throwing over $100 million at START. This is a huge waste of taxpayer dollars on a false solution.
The most efficient way to make a difference in our traffic challenges is to make sure our road system is built to handle the traffic! We need to optimize, widen and connect our roads, so that vehicles can get where they are going. We need to encourage alternative modes of transportation and fund them at a level that gives us the best return on our tax dollars. We can use SPET to expand the START fleet based on demand. We need use our LDRs to limit growth and focus it into the core areas of the Town of Jackson and Teton Village where people can walk to work, shopping, entertainment and public transportation. We need to remove the parking requirement on new development to encourage new residents to leave their cars behind.
Questions, comments, concerns? Do you have a better idea? Contact Me.