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7/10/2004 4:41:30 PM
I have hiked the incline in the past, but stopped after hearing stories of huge fines being levied on trespassers. Like most, I did not think that I was truly trespassing due to lack of enforcement and the sheer number of people I met while hiking. I do understand the liability issue, which must be resolved. The fact that a trespasser who injures himself while trespassing can sue the landowner is a sorry statement about the American legal system. Eventually, this might be resolved through public ownership and posted warnings intended to mitigate specious suits, but a temporary solution might be for the landowners to offer "passes" contingent on signing a waiver to those hardcores that are going to do it anyway. I can't imagine more than a few hundred "passes" being issued. There can even be a nominal fee for it to dissuade casual users. Another huge issue is the cost of maintenance. Again, I can't imagine that if the land could be publicly purchased through TOPS funds or some other sort of financing, that the public wouldn't jump on this. Volunteer trails maintenance could go a long way in mitigating costs, but there would still be a significant expenditure. It is crucial that injuries be minimized through trail care. Parking is more tricky as again, my assumption is that there would be peak periods where there would be a scramble for spaces, but most of the time, incline users might account for a handful of spaces in an open lot (my overwhelming experience). Maybe a summer-weekend shuttle? Maybe a simple policy: Allocation of a handful of spaces for incline users. If there are no spaces, then you hike a bit further! Again, a subscription model with a fee could be used to pay for those spaces and offset any expenses and fund a small portion of the maintenance costs. The incline is a true treasure and I, for one, would love to restart ascending it in good conscience. The views and the workout is unparallelled. I recognize that these are complex issues and applaud the team that is meeting to try to come to resolution. My wish is that my comments might spark an idea that can be used in moving closer to closure on these issues.
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By jon lawyer - 8/21/2004 11:04:58 AM
By BT - 6/18/2005 8:19:37 PM
By Happytown - 12/28/2007 9:31:50 AM