Aspen Institute tent all set
ASPEN ” The Aspen Institute once again will hold special events this summer in a temporary tent on its campus.
The Aspen City Council on Monday signed off on a temporary use permit for the Greenwald Pavilion, which in the past three years has been a venue for the Aspen Ideas Festival, the Brainstorm Fortune Conference and the Aspen Institute Summer Celebration.
Bill Clinton, Colin Powell, Karl Rove and Sens. John Edwards and John McCain have spoken under the tent in recent years.
The Aspen Institute wants to make the tent permanent because the existing facilities don’t accommodate larger events. The Institute has applied for a permanent structure but the application has yet to be reviewed by the Planning and Zoning Commission and the City Council.
In the meantime, the Institute will use the same tent it has used for the past three summers. However, a permanent floor will be constructed instead of a temporary wooden floor so it won’t be damaged when the tent’s canvas cover is removed.
Institute officials agreed to taking the canvas off when there is a two-week gap in events to appease the neighbors across the river who have grown tired of looking at the large, white structure.
“If you are living next to it, it’s very large,” said Fred Peirce, who represents the homeowners near the Aspen Institute campus. He added that the events that take place there are just as much of an impact as the tent itself. Removing the canvas will give neighbors an idea of how often the tent will be absent and how often it will be used.
The steel structure will be up from June 22 to Aug. 28, which is slightly shorter than the previous summer and one month shorter than the 2005 and 2006 approvals.
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