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Peña Blvd Plan

GDT > Campaigns > Denver Airport – Peña Blvd Plan

Denver Airport Is Growing…


69.3m Annual Passengers
of which
41m are “Origin & Destination”
which is
56k per direction per day.

2032 Forecast

100m Annual Passengers
of which
62m are “Origin & Destination”
which is
85k per direction per day.

2045 Forecast

120m Annual Passengers
of which
75m are “Origin & Destination”
which is
103k per direction per day.

The Airport Needs A Plan For This…

The Airport is developing the Peña Boulevard Transportation and Mobility Master Plan. The plan aims to “promote a shift to more sustainable modes”, “enhance safety”, “reduce crashes” and “address equity and barriers to opportunity”.

But… there’s a problem!

The Airport is currently advancing a scheme to expand Peña Blvd – before the “Peña Plan” is finished. A deal has even been worked out with the FAA to use airport revenues to fund 73% of the project!

The “Core Alternatives”

Only highway expansion ideas are being considered as part of the “core alternatives”. Transit should be fully included at this stage, NOT later on. A “bus-only” lane alternative appeared in March 2024, which is little more than managed lane infrastructure but with different striping. A Line expansion or a dedicated BRT busway separate to the highway remains off the table.

“Multimodal improvements will be incorporated into whatever that final alternative is…”

Lisa Nguyen, Denver Airport Planner, Sep 2023

What is “non-drive alone” mode share?

When U.S. airports compare their transit mode share figures with their European or Asia counterparts, they are shamefully behind and they know it. For example London’s Heathrow and Gatwick airports post impressive transit mode share (bus and train usage) figures of 40% with plans to increase this to 50%. Denver on the other hand, languishes at a pitiful 10%.

But never mind! Transit mode share figures can always be massaged into “non-drive alone” mode share figures and achievable targets by including trips by private shuttles, taxis and rideshare to give respectable figures in the 40-50% range that conveniently cover up years of failed policies. So, lets give a big welcome to the “non-drive alone” figures, which will be (incorrectly) compared with those pesky foreign airport transit mode share figures so as to not make Denver look so bad.

The story so far…

Aug 17th, 2023

Our letter to the Denver Mayor, Mike Johnston…

On Aug 17th, 2023, Greater Denver Transit and the Denver Bicycle Lobby sent a joint letter to Denver Mayor, Mike Johnston requesting that expansion of transit service to the airport is sufficiently considered as part of the Peña Boulevard Transportation and Mobility Master Plan.

…and Mayor Johnston’s response.

(We’re still waiting for that!)

Mar 18th, 2024

Denver City Council votes 7-6 to approve a $5m Inter-Governmental Agreement with CDOT to begin design and environmental clearance of the Peña Blvd Master Plan which will add a new lane and does not include a transit only study option.