Get creative for a solution
Dear Editor:In Basalt, affordable housing and open space do not have to be mutually exclusive phenomena. Both aspects were identified as very important values for Basalt residents in town wide surveys. Basalt has adopted a courageous vision in identifying its priorities and has taken bold steps toward morphing these ideals into the future fabric of this town.In adopting the new urban growth boundary, there is ample rationale to debate many aspects of where growth is appropriate and where it is not and also for what purpose those rules might be relaxed. I support the plan, which now appears headed for adoption that will exclude the Sopris Chase site since it impinges on the rural experience of the Rio Grande Trail. To compensate for the grayness and disappointment that must be felt by Western Peak who desperately wanted their property inside the boundary, Basalt Council, Planning and Zoning, and Western Peak should be creative and sensitive in using their flexible discretion to move the relocation process forward as much as possible. Fifty-three units need to be relocated per code. Three receiver sites of, say, 13.25 units each surely are available and could either be piggy backed or partnered with other development applications or mini developments on stand alone sites. The remaining 13.25 replacement units could be relocated back somewhere on the same in town site where the trailers now exist to create some diversity in the new development which will follow.I would like to see the first one of these relocation chunks worked into the Willits request for additional square footage which would leave only 26.5 additional units needing replacement in other areas within the urban growth boundary. In my mind, one and a half years from now, this process could be completed, and we can all enjoy with satisfaction in knowing that we have preserved our open space and the relocation of replacement housing out of harms way has been completed.Mark KwiecienskiBasalt
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