Banff has come up with a series of short-term measures to ease the tourist town’s traffic troubles this summer – and they come with a $26,100 price tag.
Council has directed administration to undertake a series of quick fixes to better move traffic through town and free up spaces to help ease the parking crunch.
Officials say the options increase parking stalls in prime locations for visitors, while also helping residents pursue alternative, car-free modes of transportation.
“This has been a huge priority for myself and any attempt to address this is welcome,” said Councillor Stavros Karlos.
Studies in 1998, 2005, 2006 and 2008 indicate a shortfall of about 135 parking spaces in the downtown core in peak summer months.
It is also anticipated the new farmers market may also create more demand as it will remove an additional 38 parking spaces while attracting more visitors.
On July 18, council will take part in a transportation workshop that aims to look at the bigger picture of ways to address transportation and traffic issues in the town.
But in the short-term, council has directed administration to re-sign 12-hour and three-hour parking in the Bear Street parkade to five hours, leaving only the main level as one-hour parking.
Administration will also negotiate the formal use of high school parking lots for July and August for 12-hour parking and review and adjusting timings at the YWCA traffic light to help northbound flows.
In addition, they will investigate and pilot a traffic management strategy to manually convert the Bow River bridge to two northbound lanes during special events.
As well, they will map bike rack demand and install additional bike racks where appropriate and do a communications campaign to educate people on alternative modes of transportation.
The total cost of these measures, and a couple of others, is about $26,100. The funds will be offset against the forecasted operating budget surplus of $62,500.
“It will be really interesting to watch this summer what kind of an impact they will have,” said Mayor Karen Sorensen.