Respect the time machine | AspenTimes.com

Respect the time machine

Dear Editor:

I consider developers as bad as used car salesmen … but have learned in life that there are a few good car salesmen, ergo, is it possible there are a few good developers?

People who think they can get the “best” of a car salesman grind them into the pavement, thinking they are making “a good deal.” Some just jerk the salesman around in a circle dance with absolutely no intention of “doing” the deal.

At some point, the salesman says, “Why am I doing this?”

This analogy is about the Thompson Park project, scheduled for a vote last Tuesday, Nov. 3, at its 18th meeting.

Two years into this, what kind of negotiating process was that we witnessed the other night? No room for details of questions posed but sure looks like a circle, uh, dance to me. Or maybe just not quite sure what to do now?

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Sign on the dotted line. Here’s why:

Historical entities in this valley are far fewer than potential development projects. It is easy to count. The Thompson House is the last of its kind.

One huge positive of this project is that it literally “GIVES” to future generations – a complete repository of its past; a crown’s jewel, a sacred site, a literal time machine! Yet it sits at the bottom of the trustees’ concern list as “the old house.”

The kick-in-the-butt was a trustee comment of “potential resentment” if no 24/7 general pedestrian pass-through is put smack in the middle of the historic treasure’s lawn! C’mon! Where’s the respect here?

The extensive work done by your planning department assures trustees that the build-out flexibility asked by the developer, due to current financial climate conditions, is safeguarded with incremental approval review by the board. Planning for fiscal contingencies is one thing; demanding a crystal ball into the future before approval is, at minimum, counterproductive.

If you can’t “makes the deal” now and again … you just go away. This is not a warning or a “scare” tactic, it is just a fact of life.

If you truly care about “small-town” heritage as well as your fiduciary responsibilities to its future, please Vote Yes on the Thompson Park project.

Be the board of trustees that gets to say someday, “We were thoughtful, prudent AND preserved this legacy” as your children’s children tour the historic Thompson House.

Charlotte Graham

Marble