Tabling talk of Aspen Historical Society lot split and transferable development rights |

Tabling talk of Aspen Historical Society lot split and transferable development rights

Erica Robbie
The Aspen Times

What was outlined as a discussion of the Aspen Historical Society’s “subdivision, variance and transferable development rights” took what council member Bert Myrin called an “odd” turn during a Aspen City Council meeting Tuesday.

In a memo to the council from Deputy Planning Director Jennifer Phelan, the Aspen Historical Society requested to “memorialize the use of the arts, cultural and civic use of the property via conditional use, subdivide the property to create two lots, request a dimensional variance for a setback requirement and establish transferable development rights.”

In the meeting, however, Mitch Haas of Haas Land Planning — the Aspen Historical Society’s representative — suggested “tabling the discussion about the lot split and the transferable development rights — put it on the backburner, maybe we get back to it some point in the future … maybe we don’t.”

Haas said their goal is to create “a better, more long-term and more reliable source of additional funding for the Historical Society,” and he hoped to use the meeting to find out if “the city is behind this real goal … and if so, what might be some better options that we can discuss.”

“If we can come to an agreement on a better solution to the real problem here, then we’re all ears and would like to work with you on this,” Haas said.

While Haas said he didn’t expect to resolve the issue at Tuesday’s council meeting, he said he “doesn’t want this discussion to drag on” and hopes to “keep momentum going.”

While the Historical Society’s “odd” approach to the issue was received differently by individual council members, overall, the council was relieved by the idea of tabling discussion of lot splitting and transferable development rights, and made clear their appreciation and support of the society.

City Council suggested the Historical Society meet with its board to come up with other ways to increase funding and to bring these ideas before the council to discuss in a future work session.