Tuesday night’s meeting was led by Mayor Pro-Tem Nick Kutrumbos in Mayor Jimmy Lahrman’s absence. All other members of the Town Council were in attendance.

After approving the Special Event Permit for this weekend’s Oktoberfest at Winter Park Resort, council reviewed and approved two applications for liquor licenses.

Big Trout Brewing Company, Inc. will be located in Cooper Creek Square, adjacent to the town’s new Transit Center. While the restaurant and brewery is still under construction, owners Tom and Emily Caldwell told council they are targeting an early December opening for the brew pub. A full liquor license was approved. 

Green Spaces Winter Park LLC operates The Perk Coffee and Tap Room, located in the new retail space at Hideaway Station. The establishment will operate as a Coffee Shop during the day and Tap Room at night and will be open daily from 7 am – 9 pm. A Beer and Wine license was granted to the new joint venture.   

Golden Eagle Snow Removal awarded contract

Public Works Director Gerry Vernon presented the results of the Request for Proposal (RFP) for Contractual Snow Removal services for the Hideaway Place apartments and parking garage to the council. Vernon explained the RFP had been posted on August 1 and closed August 19, and the town had received only one bid for services during that time. 

Golden Eagle Snow Removal LLC, which is operated by Mayor Jimmy Lahrman, provided hourly rates for hand shoveling, skid steer and front end loader and dump truck operations, which are required to service the compact space. 

Vernon explained, “We sought other contractors and thought we would have another bid.” He clarified that Public Works is concerned with street plowing – primary collector routes are the priority, then secondary streets and lastly, parking lots. “We would have to add staff and additional equipment from 4 – 8 am. It is not reasonable for us to do this right now.” He suggested the one year term of the contract might have made it less attractive to bidders. “We may have to reconsider this in the future,” he offered. 

Mayor Lahrman had issued a statement of conflict, due to the circumstance, which enabled council to move forward to award the contract. Vernon estimated the annual costs for the 2019-2020 winter season would be about the same as last year, at around $34K.

Council approved Resolution 1719, awarding the contract for winter snow removal services to Golden Eagle Snow Removal, which will run through June 1, 2020.

2019-2020 Winter Transit Routes 

Transit Manager Michael Koch presented the council with proposed routes the Transit Advisory Committee (TAC) approved for recommendation at their meeting on Monday afternoon. 

“The major changes are mostly having to do with the Fraser end of system,” said Koch. He explained the Black line will be moved back to US 40 and out of Grand Park. The route will travel up Meadowridge hill, turn left at Cranmer and service several stops on Wapiti, Fox Run and Twin Rivers, cross US 40 and stop in front of Fraser Ace, at the Railroad Station and back on to US 40 stops on the way back toward the resort. 

The Purple line will now provide residents in the vicinity of Meadowridge with hourly express service on weekdays and half-hour on weekends. The line will make two stops in Winter Park: King’s Crossing and the Transit Center and continue on to Winter Park Resort. 

The Cirque bus line was dissolved and the bus will be repurposed for use on Winter Park, Fraser and Meadowridge routes, as needed.

The new ‘Emerald Line’ adds service to Old Town Fraser and Grand Park. It will express through downtown Winter Park with only one stop at the Transit Center, which will allow riders to transfer to other buses as needed, and continue on to Winter Park Resort.

The Night Lift, call-and-ride service will be improved with the addition of the bus from the dissolved Cirque line. 

The TAC is also looking at the summer Black line. There have been regular calls for Flex service to and from Meadowridge, so they are looking at expanding service to include Meadowridge next summer. “That will clear the phone lines for dispatch,” said Manager Koch.

There will be some slight changes to scheduling on the winter routes, but no major changes.

Manager Koch also told council that the GPS tracking issues have been resolved. Ride Systems had sent a team to Winter Park to conduct a complete analysis of the fleet and they found four GPS units that had to be replaced. They also updated the software during the visit as well.

The Lift is in the process of updating the website, which is anticipated to launch mid-October. First Transit is about halfway through the process of installing surveillance cameras on all buses. The footage will be useful for training and security purposes.

In light of Zephyr Mountain Lodge’s discontinuation of shuttle service, Koch told council he plans to conduct travel training to educate front line staff and management on how to use the transit service.

Councilman Art Ferrari asked whether the system could accommodate the additional ridership. Koch told him the lines operate identically to the routes the shuttle utilized, and with the added bus, it is not anticipated to be a challenge. 

Councilman Charles Banks, who also serves on the TAC, said, “You have put a lot of effort in to these changes. Every year, it’s just getting better.”

“These changes really provide service to every area of our valley,” said Manager Koch.

Resolution 1720, approving the Transit Winter Services Plans for 2019-2020, were approved unanimously.

Farewell to Planner Mara Owen

Council bid adieu to Mara Owen, who is finishing up her final week. Owen started with the town in spring 2018 and has worked tirelessly on new developments as town planner. She has accepted a position with Denver Planning and Landscape Architecture firm, Norris Design. Her thorough approach and attention to detail will be missed, but we wish her well as she moves forward in her career.

To learn more, visit wpgov.com.