By Pete Gawda
The long anticipated Falcon Park-n-Ride, which is south of U.S. Highway 24 near Meridian and Swingline roads, opened in March 2022. On a foggy day in March one year later, only three drivers took advantage of the 220 parking spaces available in the lot; two days later, no cars were observed at the lot. south of U.S. 24 near Meridian and Swingline roads
As far back as Jan. 15, 2009, the El Paso County Department of Transportation held an open house for the proposed Falcon Park-n-Ride. However, the contract was not awarded until February 2020; construction started in April 2020.
John Andrews, engineer with the El Paso County Department of Transportation, said traffic studies have not been done because the project is still in the “final acceptance” period. Boundary lines have to be adjusted between El Paso County and the City of Colorado Springs to accommodate roadway changes. He said the average usage is about 25%; however, Andrews said usage should pick up once the metro bus service is established for the lot.
The lot was built to accommodate commuters from the eastern portion of the county, including Peyton and Calhan — those residents who use either Highway 24 or Woodmen Road to access Colorado Springs. It was also built to accommodate the overflow from the daily parking availability for Falcon Elementary and Legacy schools.
Andrews said the parking lot was part of an $8.45 million project, which also included the creation of 0.5 miles of new roadway, the construction of a signalized intersection at Highway 24 and New Meridian Road, resurfacing the existing roadway and the creation of a cul-de-sac and drainage facilities.
The project was funded federally by Transportation Improvement Program and Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Project grants and locally by the Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority Capital Program and funding from El Paso County.
Photos by Mike Hare
The Falcon Park-n-Ride provides about 208 parking spaces. On a foggy day in March, only three drivers took advantage of the lot. Two days later, when the sun was shining, no cars were observed in the facility. Is the lot in the wrong location, or are Falcon commuters simply not interested in ride sharing?
Let’s use this quote here. “I only feel angry when I see waste. When I see people throwing away things we could use.”
— Mother Teresa