PUTNEY—In late-August, Wayne Davis, project manager with the Vermont Agency of Transportation (AOT), said he had his “fingers crossed” for the Putney park-and-ride to open this fall.
Davis got his wish, with barely two weeks to spare before the beginning of winter.
On Dec. 9, the AOT announced the “soft opening” of the facility. According to the press release, the Putney park-and-ride is “scheduled for final completion in the spring of 2016."
The difference between the “soft opening” and “final completion” mostly lies in the addition of a bike rack shelter. The company that makes the structures, including the wooden bus shelter, caught fire earlier this year. This, Davis told The Commons in August, accounts for that delay.
The delay in opening the park-and-ride was the discovery, after the initial plans were drawn, of a power transmission pole located seven feet into the facility’s driveway.
Because the pole is owned by National Grid, and it connects to high-tension lines, moving it required negotiating with the utility, which had to ensure there would be no interruption of service.
Moving the driveway was not an option, Davis said, because that would “impact operations of the fire station."
Located at 18 Carl Snyder Drive, off Route 5, behind the Putney Fire Station, the 83-space lot is open 24 hours per day, seven days per week. It includes a bus shelter, bike racks, and Level 1 charging stations for electric vehicles. Connecticut River Transit will provide local bus service.
The AOT’s press release stated, “a bike rack shelter will be installed and final landscaping and other site improvements will be completed” in the spring.