BOULDER — With Colorado's legislative session set to begin Wednesday, transportation planners can exhale. A bill to allow buses on the shoulder of U.S. 36 should be introduced in short
order and with bipartisan support, a Regional Transportation District staffer said.
The RTD's new fleet of Flatiron Flyer buses replace nine lines with six new ones, with the idea of introducing bus rapid transit along U.S. 36 between Boulder and Denver. But just weeks before the rollout, stakeholders were surprised to learn that Colorado lawmakers have to grant RTD permission to allow certain Flyer lines to use the shoulder if general traffic slows to a halt.
The Colorado Department of Transportation took the lobbying lead once it became clear there would be no shoulder privileges without lawmakers' support. Its state legislative liaison, Andy Karsian, said Friday that Rep. Faith Winter, D-Westminster, plans to bring forth a bill — with co-sponsorship from Rep. Jon Becker, R-Fort Morgan — granting the needed exemption from a state law that prohibits driving on the shoulder. Rollie Heath, D-Boulder, says he and John Cooke, R-Greeley, will sponsor the bill in the Senate.