Condo owners ready todrop visitor center suit | AspenTimes.com
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Condo owners ready todrop visitor center suit

Janet Urquhart

Condo owners who sued the Aspen City Council and developers of a proposed new visitor center building are now willing to drop their lawsuit.The Galena Lofts Homeowners Association has filed a motion in district court seeking dismissal of the suit, now that the project slated for a parcel adjacent to their condos will be the subject of a November election.The seven Galena Lofts homeowners involved in filing the suit last May have decided to accept the outcome of the election rather than pursue their claims against the city and Millennium Plaza LLC, which owns the visitor center site on Main Street, according to the motion.”The city, obviously, is not opposing their motion to dismiss,” said John Worcester, city attorney. “In essence, what they’re doing is leaving it up to the voters.”Millennium Plaza, however, is opposing the motion to dismiss the suit. The lawsuit claims covenants that apply to the visitor center property would prevent the project that has been proposed. “They want it resolved,” Worcester said. “If it’s not resolved now, it’s something that could be raised in the future.”Millennium Plaza LLC was formed by Lowell Meyer and Gary Freedman, who own an existing building at Galena and Main streets in downtown Aspen. They came forward with a plan to redevelop the site with a mixed-use building that would provide a new visitor center and offices for the Aspen Chamber Resort Association. The city initially approached them about putting a visitor center there, replacing the less visible one at the Rio Grande parking garage.The redevelopment would put a three-story building, as seen from its Main Street facade, in front of the new Galena Lofts, blocking the views currently enjoyed from some of those condos.After the City Council approved the plans, Galena Lofts homeowners filed suit. Some of them were also involved in a successful referendum petition effort, which will put the repeal of the city’s approval before voters this fall.Meyer and Freedman initially planned to sell space in their building to the city, which would then lease it to the ACRA. They subsequently offered to give the constructed space to the city at no charge.Janet Urquhart’s e-mail address is janet@aspentimes.com


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