Intersection

Is there a price hike in Red Rock Canyon’s future?

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The hottest ticket in town isn’t at a nightclub, it’s at Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. Last year, 2.5 million people visited the canyon, and the park often hit capacity this past spring, causing long lines of cars and entrance waits.

Now, the Bureau of Land Management is considering raising amenity fees. But don’t blame higher prices on the current administration: The plan has been in the works for several years, and isn’t connected to any proposed federal budget cuts.

“All the money that comes from fees goes right back into Red Rock amenities,” BLM spokesperson John Asselin says. Costs include maintaining the roads, bathrooms, visitor centers, parking, campgrounds, educational programs and more. “It seems like Red Rock just runs smoothly, and that’s the point. But there’s a lot of cogs in the machine that keep this going. We’re trying to stay afloat and provide a quality visitor experience.”

Unfortunately, Las Vegas’ favorite fiscal strategy (aka stick it to the tourists) won’t work this time. Since the park is on federal land, it’s illegal to charge outsiders more. The per-vehicle fee (now at $7) could double by next year ($15) and triple by 2023 ($20). The annual pass is set to increase from $30 to $60 by 2023.

Have an opinion about park pricing and amenities? The BLM wants to know your thoughts. Public meetings are scheduled for September 5 (6 p.m.) and 6 (5 p.m.) at Rainbow Library (3150 N. Buffalo Drive) and September 7 at Sahara West Library (2 p.m., 9600 W. Sahara Ave.). You can also email comments to [email protected], or find out more at blm.gov/node/13377.

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