Gondola opening date delayed; expected to open June 15

In light of COVID-19 concerns, the gondola will not open for the 2020 summer as originally scheduled on May 21, 2020, due to public health orders and a delayed start to required maintenance work.

Gondola officials are anticipating an opening date of June 15, 2020, with new health guidelines, but that is subject to change given the constantly evolving COVID-19 situation.

“As we slowly reopen our towns, our full- and part-time residents and guests will once again be counting on the gondola to get them to our farmer’s markets, shops, restaurants, and even their favorite trailheads,” said Mountain Village Mayor Laila Benitez. “We know the gondola plays a critical part in our regional economy and we are excited about reopening as soon as possible.”

The gondola’s bi-annual maintenance program, which occurs each off-season, saw a three-week delay due to public health orders in March, and maintenance work began on April 26 to be in compliance with Colorado Passenger Tramway Safety Board requirements.

“Even with getting rolling three weeks late on our maintenance, the weather has been on our side which has allowed us to make up for lost time,” Mountain Village’s Transit Director Jim Loebe. “There’s still plenty of work to be done, but we’re confident that all necessary tasks will be completed for licensing with an opening date of mid-June in mind.”

Once the gondola reopens to the public, the following protocols will happen to ensure passengers and staff’s safety:

  • The number of passengers per cabin will be in accordance with county health orders.
  • Riders are asked and encouraged to wear masks while onboard and in gondola stations (masks are available upon request).
  • Hand sanitizer available at all stations.
  • Regular disinfection of gondola cabin cars between passenger onboarding.
  • Visual markers in queues in order to maintain physical separation while in line to board the gondola.

“The gondola provides a vital link between Telluride and the Mountain Village and is a better transport solution to achieve social distancing,” said Mountain Village Town Council Member Patrick Berry. “We are cautiously optimistic about its reopening.”

These protocols are subject to change depending on public health orders, social distancing protocols and recommendations at the time of reopening.

Stay tuned for another announcement confirming an opening date in the coming weeks prior to June 15.

The gondola will open briefly for Telluride High School graduation on Thursday, May 21, but only graduates and their families will be permitted to board the gondola during this time.

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