Midvalley rec center a community amenity
October 30, 2009
I find it unbelievable that you could call a midvalley recreation center “wasteful” and unnecessary. Personally, I think it is wasteful that I drive to Snowmass four times a week from the El Jebel area to exercise. I do exercise regularly outside, and am a regular on Arbaney-Kittle, the Rio Grande trail and Crown Mountain Park. I try to exercise every day, inside or outside, as we all should – obesity is a national epidemic. We all live here because we love the outdoors, but when we can’t get outside, it is great to be able to go inside.
The goal of 4A is to ask the public and determine where and what should be in a midvalley recreation center. The goal is to have financially responsible recreation that fits the midvalley community. It is true, all recreation centers are subsidized. However, it is up to the community and the planners to come up with a solution that gets the best product while making it affordable to all.
I look at a recreation center as a community amenity, similar to a library. Even if you don’t use your local library, do you really feel that they shouldn’t exist? We need to look beyond just the recreation aspect of this center. If you have ever been to Glenwood or Gypsum’s recreation centers, you will see seniors walking the track, a men’s lunch time pick up basketball game, as well as retirement parties, business meetings and community socialization.
The midvalley community is not a town per se, as much as small areas that are linked together. The area has grown tremendously in the past 10 years and within the Basalt and Carbondale areas, the schools are maxed out in population. Why should all of these families spend hours of their time commuting to recreation instead of enjoying their time outside of a car?
I urge you to look at http://www.WECMRD.org, which is Eagle County’s version of our midvalley area. They have managed to pull together their smaller towns into a recreation district, instead of forcing the residents to recreate with their superstar neighbors, Avon and Vail.
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Crown Mountain Park is an amazing amenity that people had the foresight to vote on seven years ago. We need to reevaluate the park and see what, if any, indoor amenities should be there as well.