YVRA parking rates to increase

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Parking rates at Yampa Valley Regional Airport will soon double.

The Routt County Board of Commissioners approved last week changes to the rates and charges for public parking at the airport.

Previous all-day rates were set at $3, but they will now be $6, with lower fees for those who park less than six hours in a day.

The cost increase reflects a new parking system at the airport. A new electronic gate will provide motorists with a parking ticket when they enter the alot. When travelers return, they will be able to pay with cash or credit at an automated station inside the terminal, or with credit at the exit gate.

Installment of the electronic gate is part of a $13.6 million airport improvement project, which also includes paving and expanding the parking areas.

Officials expect to have the new system, which will have 377 spaces and eight handicap spaces, in place by the end of the first week of December, Airport Manager Dave Ruppel said.

County and airport officials have said the electronic parking system will be more convenient for drivers and county officials.

In the old parking system, drivers used a stand in the parking lot to pay cash for their spots. The new system will allow drivers to pay with cash or credit card, and it should be easier for them to receive refunds.

Also, the previous system relied on drivers to be honest and leave money in the stand. The electronic arm won't give motorists the same freedom; they will have to pay for their spots.

Ruppel said in a recent e-mail that the changes would benefit people who park at the airport.

"The parking area will be well lit and a tremendous improvement for YVRA patrons."

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