Shuttle to Pikes Peak summit under consideration

Photo: The Gazette

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - More changes could be coming to Pikes Peak starting this summer.

On the heels of the abrupt Cog Railway closure -- temporarily or permanently still up in the air -- a shuttle mandate to the top of the mountain is now being considered.

According to a report by our news partners The Gazette, work on the summit house could begin this summer, which will cut parking on top of the mountain in half. Traffic on the Pikes Peak Highway is expected to be significantly heavier, as roughly half of the 300,000 who annually take the Cog are expected to turn to the road to reach the top.

Because of a combination of limited parking and extra drivers, the city of Colorado Springs is looking into allowing people to drive part way up, then take a shuttle the rest of the way. The idea is to have people park in one of three lots -- Devil's Playground, the lot near the start of the International Hill Climb, or the lot at Glen Cove if the other lots are full -- and then take the shuttle to the summit. Mountain Manager Jack Glavan told The Gazette the shuttle would not cost extra.

"We're looking at absorbing that cost into the entrance fee," he said to The Gazette. "It's going to be a free shuttle as far as visitors are concerned."

A similar shuttle system is used for the Pikes Peak Ascent and Marathon. Spectators park in designated lots on the mountain and use shuttles to reach the summit.

Colorado Springs City Council could approve Tuesday a $13.5 million appropriation for construction on the new summit house. If they do approve the funding, a vote on the shuttle mandate could happen May 31.

The summit house is expected to be finished by fall 2020.