Main Street working on plan to bring more pedicabs downtown | SteamboatToday.com

Main Street working on plan to bring more pedicabs downtown

Main Street Steamboat Springs is working to bring pedicabs to town this summer, in part, to help alleviate the scarcity of downtown parking places.

— Visitors who have a hard time finding a close place to park in downtown Steamboat Springs this summer could have a new, fun way to zip to and from a satellite lot or catch a ride for 10 blocks.

Main Street Steamboat Springs is working to bring a fleet of pedicabs downtown that could shuttle visitors around the area.

Main Street Manager Lisa Popovich said Thursday that, while she used to commonly see pedicabs operating downtown, they have become a less-common or even nonexistent sight in recent summers.

Currently, her focus is to make it easier for the pedicabs to operate and find riders.

“The season is short, and to get it started, you have to create a buzz,” Popovich said. “We’re trying to create a business model to make them more successful. It’s not an easy business to start, because you have to know they exist before a visitor will get on one.”

Popovich said efforts to improve the business model could entail establishing pedicab stands downtown.

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“To some people, the idea of walking 10 blocks to go somewhere is not a big deal,” Popovich said. “But, if you don’t know where you’re going, it kind of is.”

So far, Popovich has been in touch with at least two operators who are interested in bringing pedicabs downtown.

“We’re just starting this conversation, but, fingers crossed, we’ll have it all worked out by mid-June, and we’ll have this service downtown,” she said.

Alternate modes of downtown transportation, including bikes and buses, could become more crucial than ever this summer due to the major construction project that will leave some parking unavailable on Yampa Street.

The city plans to install new way finding signage directing visitors to larger parking lots, such as Howelsen Hill and the public lot at 10th Street and Lincoln Avenue.

The City Council has also had conversations about increasing use of satellite lots and potentially bringing back a downtown shuttle service.

Popovich said the parking crunch anticipated this summer was one reason for working on the pedicab proposal.

The Yampa Street project is scheduled to begin May 23.

The city will soon launch a new hotline for the project, which will enable residents to call and listen to a weekly recording outlining the scope of the work and its impact.

Public meetings will also be announced soon.

To learn more, visit steamboatsprings.net/yampastreet.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10