Vote for Basalt to stay Basalt

Dear Editor:

We’re voting for Pete McBride, Katie Schwoerer and Jacque Whitsitt in the Basalt election, and here’s why: We’ve been talking to people about Basalt, and two things keep coming up. First, we all want our children to be able to return here, meaning we need affordable housing. At the same time, we want our kids to be able to come back to Basalt, not Phoenix-in-a-valley. But the two issues are linked: If you try to solve affordability by building lots of houses on green space, you lose the small town and get sprawl. If you focus only on Basalt’s small town character, you end up with a place nobody can afford. This is where the idea of an urban growth boundary comes in.

By establishing a firm boundary, as the town council has done, we ensure that Basalt stays Basalt and doesn’t become a sprawling, inefficient, auto-dependent mess. The boundary actively encourages development within the town core and asks developers to get creative with the space available. Maybe best for everyone, town council now can dedicate its time to making good projects better, since they won’t be wasting time (repeatedly) turning down development proposals from outside the boundary. The result could be incredible: small town character and ample housing at reasonable prices.

Three candidates understand this best. Those three are Pete, Katie and Jacque. We’ll be voting for them April 1.

Auden Schendler and Ellen Freedman