Musick isn’t backing down on W/J plan | AspenTimes.com
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Musick isn’t backing down on W/J plan

Jeremy Heiman

Despite Pitkin County’s downzoning of W/J Ranch, developer John Musick still intends to build affordable housing there.

“I have the exact same plans as I’ve always had,” Musick said yesterday. “We’re still the owner. W/J is still committed to affordable housing.”

He said the idea of building five giant “spec” homes – what the land is now zoned to accommodate – is an outrage. “We don’t need no stinking luxury homes,” he said, in a parody of a line from the film, “The Treasure of the Sierra Madre.”

Musick said he would stand behind his promise to give out free lots made last year. He allowed citizens to sign up for W/J lots at the Aspen post office on election day last November, but has not distributed the deeds to property that he promised.

“The free lots are going out immediately … the people are gonna get their deeds,” he vowed.

Pitkin County commissioners voted last Friday to rezone 112 acres at the ranch, located off McLain Flats Road near Woody Creek, from AH, a district that would allow high-density affordable housing, to RS-20, which would allow only five houses on the land. A proposed affordable housing overlay zone, which has not yet been approved, would allow 45 houses on the property.

Musick said he has prepared amended complaints to add to a lawsuit he filed last year against the county, when his land-use application for the property was denied. “We’ll slap it on ’em immediately,” he said.

Musick sued the county in district court last October after the county denied his application to build 778 affordable units at W/J. The suit asked for a reversal of the county commissioners’ decision and money to replace what Musick said he lost during the approval process.

The suit names the Board of County Commissioners and each commissioner individually as defendants.


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