Basalt to Aspen: unfriendly territory |

Basalt to Aspen: unfriendly territory

A few weeks ago, there was a front-page feature story as to “Views vary on what ails Aspen.”

I expected to see a lot more than the few letters which commented.

Aspen and Pitkin County from Basalt south to Aspen is unfriendly territory, and has become more so during the last 20 years. I would suggest a query of those once-Aspen residents who have moved to Blue Lake, El Jebel, Carbondale, Glenwood, New Castle and points on west, would bear me out.

It may be partly due to those who are part-time residents, always in a hurry whether on foot or in their car. They have a somber look on their faces as you pass them by, never able to muster a “Good Morning” or “Hi!” when on the streets of Aspen.

The dramatic influx of the private auto, even with at least 16 stoplights between Glenwood and Cemetery Lane, probably contributes to the irritability of the person or persons heading toward Aspen. It will only get worse, even after Highway 82 is four-laned all the way from Glenwood. If RFTA puts into service an updated version of their present bus, unless they have their own private right-of-way, they will be at the mercy of the worst individual driver on the highway, and cannot possibly provide any improvement over their present schedules.

Occasionally, I review a number of old Aspen Times in my files, dating back to 1936. There’s not one realtor’s ad, nor any letters complaining about the threat of light rail to RFTA.

There was no four-lane highway 82, and it was not paved from Rosebud Cemetery, in Glenwood, to Aspen, and there was no weekly account of fatalities on Highway 82.

I believe you would have seen a lot more smiles on the face of the occasional visitor during that era, than you do now!

It doesn’t take a consultant to point out Aspen’s ailments to its residents – all they have to do is talk to some of their ex-neighbors.

Del Gerbaz

Glenwood Springs

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