What You Missed: Rideshare App Tackles Colorado Ski Traffic
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The entrepreneur behind a new carpooling app believes its technology will provide a solution to the traffic jams that occur along Colorado’s I-70 corridor during ski season. The freeway provides metro Denver access to many of the state’s most popular ski areas and is known for its extreme (and sometimes traitor) overcrowding on powder days.
French expatriate Erwin Germain created the new application, Treadshare, to imitate similar solutions, he is used to finding carpooling options in Europe. The app checks and matches drivers and passengers traveling between different destinations along the route for a fixed fee. Rides are intentionally low cost (just below the Internal Revenue Service standard for conducting business, at 56 cents per mile), with 16% of each fare going to the company for processing and other expenses .
This is just the latest proposed solution to the congestion caused by Colorado’s notorious ski traffic – and perhaps the most affordable yet. But even carpoolers run the risk of being trapped in the terrible traffic up the mountain.
Resorts and government entities have tried a variety of approaches to the conundrum of commuting, from opening additional toll lanes to increasing parking fees to encourage skiers and snowboarders to use other modes of transportation. The problem with the latter approach is that the public transport options are slim and expensive: tickets for the Express winter park train between Denver and Winter Park Resort, created in partnership with Amtrak, starting at $ 29, and the Snowblood bus, with service to four mountains, starts at $ 25 (and is also stuck in traffic).
Treadshare looks promising – it has already been downloaded over 700 times since its launch in late November. But in concept, the app is just another way Colorado is delaying investment in the solution that everyone who’s been stuck in a five-hour ski traffic jam has begged for: reliable, big. speed, cheap public transport.
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