Fallen arch cramps lodge | AspenTimes.com

Fallen arch cramps lodge

Charles Agar

Paul Conrad/The AspenTimes

A hit-and-run driver damaged an arch at the entry to the Aspen Mountain Lodge on Main Street last week.”It was more of a destroy-and-run driver,” said Jamie Hummer, the hotel engineer.

The narrow arch is a decorative feature connecting the hotel building with the pool area and hot tub. Cars entering the parking lot from the west end of Main Street drive under the arch. Because the arch is just 10 feet high, vehicles entering the parking lot have hit it, but previous incidents were minor. Around 2:30 p.m. Thursday, someone drove under the arch from the parking lot onto Main Street. The vehicle hit the arch and apparently plowed right through, pulling the arch away from the building. The accident damaged a deck and wrecked the hotel’s hot tub area. The 1,500-gallon hot tub is cracked and needs replacement. One room in the hotel is out of commission until the deck is repaired.Hummer said they’re not sure what kind of truck did the damage, but because of the width of the marks on the arch, he believes it was a large service truck.

The hot tub is part of the charm of the lodge and one reason for the hotel’s many bookings, particularly from European visitors, Hummer said. And losing the hot tub would mean a significant decrease in bookings.Hummer shored up the area with support braces, but city officials set up barricades at the entrance because the arch is not stable.

“If this were to fall on somebody, it would kill them,” Hummer said. Hotel staff is working with the city to obtain a demolition permit by the end of the week.Hummer said the hotel would be grateful for any assistance from the community in identifying the culprit and that the hotel will offer a reward for information that leads to a conviction.Charles Agar’s e-mail address is cagar@aspentimes.com.

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