Ahead of a busy summer, the RMOW is exploring initiatives to ensure the resort experience remains exemplary while managing an anticipated increase of visitors.
“With an increase of visitation last summer, came an increased demand on our park infrastructure and resources,” said Mayor Jack Crompton. “It is paramount that we carefully plan for this summer, so we are able provide an enjoyable and authentic experience for both our residents and guests.”
At the March 16 Council meeting, staff presented a ‘Whistler Summer Experience 2021 Plan’ for Council consideration that aims to provide improved visitor experiences and local business opportunities, and will test initiatives related to local transportation choices and climate action objectives.
The plan maintains COVID-19 safety while focusing on several key areas including increased parking management, increased local transit and sustainable transportation offerings, visitor dispersion and programming, improved park experiences and local business opportunities.
In an effort to manage the demand at some of Whistler’s busier parks and to reduce local travel emissions, the plan includes the implementation of user pay parking at Rainbow, Lakeside, Alpha and Wayside Parks during the summer months. The implementation of seasonal pay parking will align with pay structures in place in the day lots and on Main Street, with revenues supporting the seasonal park shuttle service, as well as other park operations.
The municipality has submitted a grant application to the Canada Healthy Communities Initiative that could potentially offset $250,000 of the Plan’s implementation costs. The net impact on the budget as presented in the ‘Whistler Summer Experience 2021 Plan’ is anticipated to be minimal if the grant application is successful. A budget amendment may ultimately be required and will be presented to Council at a future date.
To view the staff report and to watch the March 16 Council meeting, visit whistler.ca/CouncilMeetings
As programming and summer planning is finalized, information will be posted at whistler.ca/summer2021