County to study Summerhaven traffic, parking

Updated: Apr. 5, 2018 at 7:00 PM MST
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SUMMERHAVEN, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Summerhaven on Mt. Lemmon, it is one of the busiest places in Tucson, no matter the time of year.

During the winter months, visitors flock to the area to play in the snow and during summer months they head for the mountains to escape the heat in the city. All the visitors make for a difficult task - finding a parking space.

All of that could change, thanks to in part to a study, approved by the Pima County Board of Supervisors earlier this week that will be funded by a $50,000 grant from the Pima Association of Governments.

The study will take place from July 1, 2018 to June 30, 2019. According to the Pima County Department of Transportation, it will review existing infrastructure, road networks, parking availability and traffic data. The results will be used to determine short-term and long-term results for funding for future projects.

Tucson News Now went up to Summerhaven to see for ourselves what the real issues are up there. And it was evident what the major problem was, parking. During lunch time at the Cookie Cabin, all of the parking spots were taken and there were very few spaces to park on the side of the street.

Leanne Mack is the General Manager of the General Store, where they have 11 parking spots in front of the store.

Mack says during the winter she has to police her parking lot. Many times, she finds that people will park in the lot and take off for several hours to play in the snow leaving no room for her customers to park.

She told us, she is excited about the county doing the study and offered her suggestion to fix the problem, shuttles.

According to Mack, it could be as simple as building a parking lot five miles from the village, and then having the shuttle pick up and d rop visitors off every half hour.

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