Information presented at an open house on the day skier parking lots Thursday, July 24, confirmed that parking on Lots 1, 2 and 3 will cost $8 in the winter and $12 in the summer, beginning the summer of 2010.
James Hallisey, manager of environmental projects for the municipality, said prices are more expensive in the summer because Whistler-Blackcomb felt visitors are already spending significant cash to ski and snowboard in Whistler during the winter months.
He added that hourly rates will be available for the day skier lots as well, but final prices have not yet been calculated.
Less than 20 people attended the three-hour event held at the Whistler Public Library, although many of those who attended had a list of questions to ask municipal staff.
Information presented during the evening stressed that the pay parking program would be revenue neutral, and some of the revenue from the pay parking would be used to make transit more affordable for Whistler residents.
“The pay parking plan ultimately seeks to encourage increased transit usage and car pooling,” read one of the information boards.
Bill Barratt, chief administration officer for the resort municipality of Whistler, said the details of the Transit Affordability Plan have not yet been nailed out yet.
“It is a concept that has been agreed to by Whistler-Blackcomb and ourselves,” said Barratt.
“The intent was we didn’t want it (the money generated by pay parking) to go into general revenue. Whistler-Blackcomb agreed that they did not want it to be a revenue generator for them…. We thought it would be a great way to fund some affordability programs.”
Barratt said even though details of the Transit Affordability Program are still in the works, it will likely involve reduced fairs on transit passes for residents.
The program will kick in sometime during the winter of 2011.
The rest of the funds generated from pay parking will go into maintaining the parking lots, as well as funding the paving of the lots and the construction of the Fitzsimmons Creek debris barrier.
Municipal staff have scheduled construction on the day lots to take place during the shoulder seasons from September to October 2008 and May to June 2009. One lot will be closed at a time, although more significant interruptions will likely take place on the few days when the pavement is actually being laid down.
More specifically, the construction contract will be awarded this August, and by September and October, storm piping and electrical conduits will be installed on the three lots. Grading, creating a road base, and paving will then take place in May and June 2009, with landscaping done next summer.
Lots 4 and 5 will remain free and unpaved. Hallisey currently estimates that together, Lots 1, 2 ands 3 hold 876 spaces and Lots 4 and 5 hold 1,250 spaces.