Editor’s note: The candidates for mayor took up the issue of the town’s mobile home parks.
What should be done with the Roaring Fork and Pan and Fork mobile home parks?
Name: Anne Freedman
Position sought: Mayor
The two mobile home parks differ in that the Pan and Fork is entirely in Basalt while the Roaring Fork Mobile Home Park is primarily in unincorporated Pitkin County with a small portion in Eagle County. The counties will have to be part of any solution.
Because the Pan and Fork site is an integral part of the historic downtown, it should be developed with commercial buildings in keeping with the scale of the rest of the core, with the land bordering the river set aside for a park. On the other hand, the Roaring Fork Mobile Home Park should not be developed in a way that would put it in competition with the downtown.
Replacing the affordable units in the trailer parks is, of course, the major hurdle. Some affordable housing could be put on the land between the post office and the sanitation plant. The Catholic Archdiocese, which has money for affordable housing, might be able to build there. The property behind Southside could provide some units, and there might be units available in the new lower-cost housing at Willits. One other possibility is that most of the Roaring Fork Mobile Home Park could remain a trailer park after the trailers next to the river are removed and work is done to eliminate flood damage.
Name: Leroy Duroux
Position sought: Mayor
The results of many hours of research and flood plain mapping identified these two properties as being in danger of serious flooding during a high-water event. The families of these two parks need to be relocated out of these dangers.
They should be moved to a location as close to town center as possible where they can have ownership of the land and residence.
Redevelopment of the safe areas should result in mixed uses that:
1. helps bolster the economy of the town;
2. provides opportunities for families to establish businesses;
3. brings focus to our rivers and establishes river parks;
4. adds to the social capital by creating gathering places and defining what Basalt will look like at build out.
Great care must be taken so that diversity of the community will be ensured for the future.