Just recharging her batteries | AspenTimes.com

Just recharging her batteries

Many people have asked me why I stopped writing letters to the editor about Aspen’s new swimming pools. Friends and strangers ask me if the beating I took campaigning for Aspen’s new recreation center’s swimming pools has stopped me from pursuing more new “swimming pools.” “Did I give up?” they ask.I chuckle, smile and ask, “Haven’t you heard about the new outdoor, in-town, 3 1/2-foot to 12-foot deep, warm water, circular, “Huckleberry Finn” au natural pool, complete with a ski and snowboard water ramp (no more long trips to Utah for skiing, snowboarding and freestyle water ramp training), rope swings, slides for easy access, and rocks to jump off (like the Punch Bowl in Independence Pass), THAT IF ALL GOES WELL, will be built in Rio Grande Park below the skateboard park?”The most common reaction I get is, “Yippee!! …. when will it open?” I usually say, “Hopefully soon. First, the concept needs to be approved (First meeting today). Once the concept gets approved, then it will be time for funding mechanisms to be put into place.”Today, downstairs in City Hall, beginning at 1:30 p.m. and ending at 4 p.m., the Community Task Force on the Rio Grande Master Plan will hear an update on the progress made by Aspen’s engineering, environmental health and parks departments in Rio Grande Park.Nick Adeh, engineering director, will speak about the task of collecting and straining stormwater in Rio Grande Park before it gets into the Roaring Fork River.Lee Cassin, Environmental Health Director, will speak about water sampling and testing of stormwater drainage at Rio Grande Park.Scott Chilsom, parks department and project manager for Rio Grande Park improvements, will speak about some of the “wish list” enhancements to Rio Grande.PUBLIC COMMENT on Rio Grande Park will be taken for the first time by the Community Task Force beginning at approximately 2:15 p.m. until approximately 3 p.m. downstairs in City Hall.-Should the rugby, soccer, flag football playing field be straightened out and lowered with spectator seating along the perimeter?-Does Rio Grande Park need real bathrooms?-Should the skateboard park be expanded to include a “streetscape” section?-Should the recycling program be improved with more businesses consolidating pickups in the alleyways to increase the volume of recyclables collected and to reduce the amount of automobile trips to the park location?-Can the recycling program be moved diagonally across the street to better improve the drop-off site and to give the park more flexibility in planning functions?-Does the Theater in the Park need to move closer to the river to accommodate stormwater management?-Can a warm water “Huckleberry Finn” au natural pool be built?-Are there any needed improvements to John Denver’s Sanctuary Park?-Does the river’s kayak park need any improvements?-Does the basketball court need any fixing?My reply to people when they ask if I gave up is, “No, I have not given up. I just took a little extra time to recharge my batteries for the Rio Grande Master Plan Sept. 18 meeting.”Toni KronbergAspen

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