Park Tahoe paid pilot parking program starts next week at East Shore Trail
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Tahoe Transportation District is telling visitors to “Come Early, Come Late, Pay a Lower Rate” as it kicks off its Park Tahoe pilot program at the East Shore Trail in Incline Village.
The new paid parking facility offers 90 metered spots to expand off-highway parking options along the heavily frequented stretch of State Route 28 from Incline to Sand Harbor State Park.
The new transit-accessible parking consists of three lots, which were completed last summer by the Nevada Department of Transportation. Pay station kiosks are located at each lot and accept credit card payments only. Those three lots had been free parking since they were constructed.
Park Tahoe will begin hourly paid parking from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily on Monday, July 27.
A parking ambassador will be available during peak times to help answer questions and ensure a seamless experience. Arriving at the lots early in the morning or later in the evening is recommended, as the trail’s popularity makes it particularly challenging to find parking between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.
To enhance availability and encourage turnover, parking rates are higher during peak periods, with lower rates occurring outside of peak hours and during the shoulder season to promote a “Come Early, Come Late, Pay a Lower Rate” theme.
Additional details about the parking system and rates for Park Tahoe at the trailhead can be found at http://www.TahoeTransportation.org/Parking.
As the only access route for some of the most visited recreation areas on Lake Tahoe’s East Shore, demand for parking on SR 28 has long exceeded capacity. Recreation congestion has impeded traffic flow and emergency vehicle access, leading to unsafe conditions and dangerous shoulder parking, which is prohibited and subject to citation on portions of SR 28 between Incline Village and just south of Sand Harbor.
Relocating shoulder parking to off-highway paid parking will help address these safety concerns and encourage turnover to improve access to this popular corridor and connect residents and visitors to additional transportation options, such as the shared-use path system and public transit. As part of the partnership agreement between TTD, Washoe County and Nevada State Parks, parking revenues will be used for the operations and maintenance of trails and parking.
“As Lake Tahoe’s popularity as a recreation destination continues to grow, traffic congestion and insufficient parking have become ongoing frustrations for both residents and visitors,” said Carl Hasty, district manager of the Tahoe Transportation District in a press release. “We plan to add more off-highway parking as new trail segments are opened, but demand for parking will always exceed capacity, which is why TTD is working on other solutions to reduce the number of vehicles at Tahoe. Our goal is to connect parking and transit to a basin-wide multi-modal transportation system that is safe, convenient, reliable, and sustainable.”
As part of TTD’s aim to integrate parking and transit, Park Tahoe at the trailhead will provide connectivity to TTD’s East Shore Express service and the park and ride lot at the old Incline Village elementary school. The East Shore Express is temporarily suspended due to COVID-19, but it is expected to resume operations next summer. Tahoe Truckee Area Regional Transportation (TART) also operates a summer bus service to the Tahoe East Shore Trail trailhead. TTD and TART transit services are currently free to ride for all passengers.
To help improve access to popular recreation destinations and make finding parking safer and easier, earlier this year TTD announced that it is spearheading the development of a unified parking management strategy for the Lake Tahoe Region. Reducing recreation congestion and relocating shoulder parking to off-highway lots will help lessen vehicle idling and driving time, which benefits Lake Tahoe’s ecosystem by decreasing erosion and emissions. Transportation system improvements are critical to improving Lake Tahoe’s air and water quality because more than 70 percent of the pollutants impacting the lake’s clarity come from the transportation system and built environment.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, TTD encourages the community to recreate safely and follow the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidance. When using the parking kiosk pay stations and Tahoe East Shore Trail recreational facilities, please maintain social distancing of at least six feet, practice frequent hand-washing or sanitizing, and cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover. To avoid crowding, please note that access to Sand Harbor State Park from the Tahoe East Shore Trail is currently closed. For more information on the CDC’s COVID-19 guidance, click here. For information on TTD’s response to COVID-19, click here.
The Tahoe East Shore Trail is part of a shared-use path system that will ultimately circle Lake Tahoe and is the joint effort of 14 agencies and nonprofits working to improve access to this popular destination.
For trail maps and information about the Tahoe East Shore Trail, please visit http://www.TahoeTrail.org.
For more information on TTD’s transit services and updated routes and schedules, please visit http://www.TahoeTransportation.org/Transit.
Email TTD at firstname.lastname@example.org with feedback or questions about Park Tahoe at the trailhead.
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