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Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
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Copyright © 2002 Express Publishing Inc.
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For the week of Jan 29 - Feb 4, 2003


Bus is sound investment

When the Sun Valley City Council questioned the value of the Peak Bus, the valley’s commuter bus last week, Blaine County Commissioner Sarah Michael answered the question with questions.

She asked: What’s the value of taking 1,000 to 1,500 cars a month off the road every month? What is the value to employers? What’s the value of providing transportation for kids?

It was a good way of pointing out the real value of the city’s $20,000 annual investment--or about $1.11 per rider annually.

There are more questions the city should answer before it indulges itself in calling the Peak Bus on the carpet again.

For example, what’s the value of a parking space in downtown Ketchum where most valley businesses operate?

With current land values, it’s somewhere in the neighborhood of $4 to $5 a day.

What’s the value of saving 1,500 gallons of gas a month?

In economic terms, it’s between $20,000 and $30,000 a year. In geopolitical terms, where fears about oil supplies create international unrest and military interventions, the savings from the Peak Bus alone translate into hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The Peak Bus is a good deal and should pay even bigger returns in the form of avoided costs for both cities and commuters in the future. It deserves strong financial support, not penny-pinching.

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The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.