I-70 mountain travel made easy using transit options

News Release

August 10, 2022 - Statewide - New survey shows satisfied riders; repeat customers

Statewide – As the Colorado Department of Transportation continues to meet transit needs along the Interstate 70 mountain corridor through services including Bustang, Outrider, Snowstang and the newly launched Pegasus shuttle, data commissioned by the I-70 Coalition shows satisfied transit passengers and repeat riders. Over 90% of riders on both Bustang and Snowstang responded positively about safety, customer service and the overall experience. Visit the Bustang webpage, Outrider webpage and Snowstang webpage to learn more about the services. To learn more about the new Pegasus shuttle, refer to the Pegasus news release.

“The reason we commissioned this survey was to get into the minds of I-70 users - both motorists and transit users alike,” said Margaret Bowes, Executive Director of the I-70 Coalition. “We wanted to understand the motivations behind using transit and how to encourage non-transit users to try one of the many options, like Pegasus. We want I-70 mountain corridor users to know that there are many ways to get to the mountains without a car, and a lot of great free options to use to get around once you arrive.”

I-70 congestion and delays are reducing the frequency of trips to the mountains by Front Range residents, with 75% reporting less visits in recent winter seasons. Over the past several years, CDOT has implemented and expanded transit service offerings along the I-70 mountain corridor. From Bustang to Outrider, and Snowstang to Pegasus, these services link major local transit systems together and respond to demand from the traveling public to have a reliable transit alternative along the highest-traveled corridors in Colorado. Ultimately, increased transit use will decrease congestion along the I-70 mountain corridor.

“This is the time of year when the I-70 Mountain Corridor has its highest traffic numbers so it’s a great time to experience our various transit services, especially now while our fares have been slashed in half for the summer,” said CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew. “We’re providing an excellent alternative for those who want to travel to the mountains but don’t want to pay the high gas prices. And with all the added traffic, it’s a way to make your trip safer and more enjoyable.”

In particular, Pegasus speaks to the needs expressed by Front Range I-70 mountain corridor users. According to the survey, possible ridership motivators for Front Range travelers include more pickup and drop off locations (63%), more frequent services (59%), and the ability to make reservations (56%). Pegasus provides dozens of trips each weekend when traffic nearly doubles and is able to use the Mountain Express Lanes, resulting in fewer cars in the regular lanes to improve the flow of traffic and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. A Pegasus shuttle seats up to 11 people, is wheelchair accessible, and equipped with USB ports, power outlets and Wi-Fi. Each vehicle has luggage storage, bike racks and ski/snowboard containers.

While many Front Range survey respondents reported a lack of interest in transit because they preferred using their own vehicle (47%), a high percentage reported that they needed a vehicle once they arrived at their destination (39%) to get around. The intention of CDOT transit services is to connect major transit providers together to facilitate car-free travel to the mountains. For example, you can catch Pegasus at Denver Union Station and travel to Frisco, and then use the free Summit Stage to get to every town and resort in Summit County, as well as several recreation trailheads. Visit the Summit Stage webpage to learn more about the bus schedules. Individual communities, like Breckenridge, Vail and Avon have local transit options that are free of charge, making it really easy to get around town. Front Range riders cite many reasons for using Bustang and Snowstang including saving money on gas, avoiding driving in adverse weather conditions and leisure/relaxation time

on the bus. Currently, the Polis-Primavera administration and CDOT are offering half-rate fares until Labor Day weekend for Bustang, Outrider and Pegasus providing a low-cost travel alternative to the mountain towns along I-70. Visit colorado.gov to learn more about the cut fares. 

About the I-70 Coalition

The I-70 Coalition is a non-profit organization representing 28 local governments and businesses along Colorado’s I-70 mountain corridor. The Coalition’s mission is to enhance public accessibility and mobility in the I-70 Central Mountain Corridor and adjoining dependent counties and municipalities through the implementation of joint public and private transportation management efforts. Learn more at i70solutions.org. The Coalition also manages GoI70 that provides travelers with travel forecasts, deals and the latest I-70 news available at Goi70.com.