Publisher’s Note: Your keys, please

By on February 11, 2014

The new START bus garage in Karns Meadows.

Sometimes I can be a little oblivious to what’s happening around me. It took awhile,
but eventually a 37,000-square-foot building did penetrate my consciousness. I was gate
keeping for a ski race up on Snow King when I happened to gaze off into the distance toward the Virginian. I had to blink hard and squint, because though it seemed impossible it appeared that an incredibly huge concrete wall had been erected in Karns Meadow. The monolith seemed as unlikely as if it had been a computer-generated image. It reminded me of one of the newer Star Trek movies in which they drew a starship base atop an Iowa cornfield.

However, it appears the massive building going up in Karns Meadow is real. Jackson’s version of a starship base is the new START Bus barn. This giant building, which is initially 37,000 square feet but expandable to up to 150,000 square feet, already ranks among the largest structures in town. It was able to slide through the planning process with nary a peep of mass and scale controversy, while other behemoths like Kmart and Albertsons languished in busybody planner limbo for ages.

This massive investment in START will push us further down the road of government controlled transportation at the expense of individual freedom. I can see the efficacy of buses full of people traveling between bustling commercial nodes within our valley, but as START expands into less cost-effective routes the negative aspects of the push for mass transit start to pile up. Empty buses lumbering down formerly quiet residential streets negatively affect the character of our neighborhoods. (Yes, I’m still annoyed by the new bus route that passes in front of my house on Rancher Street). In order to fill those buses the government will need to make it more and more difficult for us to drive and park our cars. The green war on our personal automobiles, which is enshrined in our new master plan, will cost us money, make us less free, and make it harder for working people to get to and do their jobs.

The Greeniacs declared war on our incandescent light bulbs and won. That great big structure going up in Karns Meadow is another salvo in their battle to eliminate the personal automobile. Underestimate big green government determination, and you may end up totally dependent on whatever is stored in that giant building as your only source of transportation.

About Judd Grossman


  1. Barnet

    February 13, 2014 at 7:11 am

    Ugly.Way to destroy a potentially great neighborhood. Should have been used for employee housing in the future.

  2. anonyholic II

    February 14, 2014 at 12:31 am

    Because we say so, Judd. Shut up and deal with it. Just like Center for the Arts. (signed) TOJ.

  3. BB

    February 16, 2014 at 8:26 pm

    You may have a point about the new bus barn being an eye sore, but everything else here is ridiculous. I don’t love seeing an AllTrans shuttle in front of my house in the Aspens either, but there’s obviously individual costs of being in a town that needs to transport people. Simultaneously making a large portion of your money off the masses while complaining about them — that doesn’t look good on you Judd.

  4. 22

    February 17, 2014 at 3:02 pm

    Greeniacs….really Judd?….are we in high school??….I’m guessing you do not raise a stink when the TOJ allocates money to fund auto infrastructure necessary for your totally ‘independent’ transportation….unless you bike or walk, you are sucking the teet just as much as anyone.

  5. Third generation

    February 17, 2014 at 11:04 pm

    Sometimes it’s hard not to be oblivious to the world, especially from inside a car. It takes some unavailable awareness for a 90,000-square-foot parking garage to penetrate at least one writer’s consciousness. It seems impossible that we could erect an incredibly huge monument to sloth and agoraphobia in the middle of Jackson. It seems as unlikely as a self-styled freedom-lover who can’t get around outside a cage driven on socialized roads, but there you go. It reminds me of a goat I once saw trying to hump a dog trying to lick its own balls.

    However, it appears some oblivious people haven’t noticed that the parking garage is empty. Jackson’s version of Mother Motherland is the new downtown Detroit. This giant building, which is literally 90,000 square feet, some thinkers without a trace of irony fail to compare to the new START facility. Because most people in Jackson Hole prefer being outside and around members of their own community, we’ve become increasingly less dependent on personal automobiles. That’s why most citizens want other ways to get around.

    The massive historic investment in automobile infrastructure has pushed us further down the road of government controlled transportation at the expense of individual freedom. I can see not much efficacy in subsidizing more pavement for dualie-driving “fourth-generation” posers to drive long distances from town every day so they can play pretend at their ranches, nor for their ideological twins who drive those same dualies across the midwest to Jackson while towing an RV because they’re too fragile to sleep outside.

    And as WYDOT expands our roads in service of indolence and Jackson’s hotel industry, the negative aspects of our traffic problem continue to pile up. Souped-up trucks breaking the speed limit down residential streets negatively affect the character of our neighborhoods. (Yes, traffic sucks, which is why even oblivious idiots want less of it). In order to portray themselves as victims instead of parasites, more and more car-dependent ranters will write silly things. The war on cars, like the war on coal, the war on terrorism, and the war on drugs, is a dishonest term used by dishonest people to justify dishonest ends. Dependence on single-occupancy vehicles, which lazy thinkers attempt to justify by disparaging alternatives, has led us into wars of aggression for cheap oil, kills 35,000 Americans each year, burdens our health care system with the costs of a sedentary lifestyle, and will make our town ugly, loud and inhospitable.

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