Mountain Village passes dismount zone ordinance in Village Center

Dismount zone

Words by Kathrine Warren / Government, Recreation

In its monthly May meeting, the Mountain Village Town Council unanimously passed an ordinance creating a dismount/pedestrian-only zone in Village Center. The new ordinance goes into effect June 15, 2019, and encompasses the majority of the plazas and walkways in the heart of Mountain Village.

“With increased visitation to Mountain Village, the number of close calls between pedestrians, bikes and skateboards has become a concern, and we hope to give everyone an enjoyable experience while they are here,” said Police Chief Chris Broady.

The ordinance requires cyclists to dismount and walk their bikes, skateboards and Onewheels in public plazas, including Heritage Plaza, Sunset Plaza and Reflection Plaza. The zone extends past Village Pond and includes the Telluride Conference Center areas as well.

Wheelchairs, other rolling devices used for disabilities and baby carriages are exempt from the new ordinance.

It allows for areas to test ride bikes outside of Mountain Village’s three bike shops and outlines a bypass trail for bikers coming off the Telluride Bike Park (which is slated to open in early July).

The bypass route connects the Telluride Bike Park with Mountain Village Boulevard and the rest of the town’s trail system. Cyclists are reminded to follow the rules of the road when riding on Mountain Village Boulevard, Lost Creek Lane and Country Club Drive.

“We are very excited about the launch of the newly expanded Telluride Bike Park and can’t wait to check out their new trails,” said Mayor Laila Benitez. “It is important to us that we are doing everything we can to ensure a safe and positive biking and Village experience.”

The ordinance was created after extensive work with Telluride Ski Resort, local bike shops and Mountain Village’s Parks and Recreation Department and sought to balance the needs of merchants, bicyclists and pedestrians.

“This ordinance is a proactive step to foster the safety of both bikers and pedestrians,” said Town Council Member Patrick Berry. “It could not have been achieved without valuable input from the biking community, vendors and the public. Continued input from these groups will be vital to execute changes in the future as we learn what works and what does not.”