Please preserve balance
It is a blessing to be able to live in a town which is both a great resort with all the amenities and a vibrant, historical town with a strong and caring community within it. Naturally, there is occasional tension between the two elements, which creates such a wonderful chemistry. Each construction project, particularly the large ones, exacerbates this tension because it impacts those who live here so much in terms of excessive noise, pollution, traffic congestion and many other ways. Hence, we must strive for balance between what is good for the resort and what is good for the residents of the town.
The height, scale, mass, density and other standards set forth in our building and zoning codes reflect what our combined community believes is the proper balance between our commercial needs and our daily living values. Mr. Sarpa has had four years to adjust his project in such a way that our community as a whole could not only support it but be enthusiastic about it. (Wouldn’t it be fun to have one project that we were all enthusiastic about!) Yet he, like the developers of the Dancing Bear and the Limelight, has chosen to push the limits of our patience and press for a project beyond the proper balance, and this has resulted and continues to result in the division of our community. It’s a pity that money could be that important, particularly to people who have been so blessed.
His project is too large; it requires too many employees who will become commuters and add to our traffic congestion; it requests too much parking, which invites more people to rent and drive cars into Aspen to the project; and 10,000 truckloads of dirt going through our town for the next two years is unthinkable. I urge the City Council members, particularly Skadron and Romero, to vote against the Lodge at Aspen Mountain and to demonstrate that our building standards mean something and that a proper balance in our community is worth preserving.
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A driver looking to squeeze one last four-wheel drive up Aspen Mountain discovered that it’s not the ascent but the decent that poses a challenge.