Why not hear from the voters?
February 29, 2004
I lived in Snowmass Village for several years in the late 1970s and early 1980s. I moved to California for a job because I was not interested in either being a real estate broker or working for the Aspen Skiing Co.
My husband and I return to Snowmass every year because the snow, terrain and people are fabulous; and so we follow the Base Village debate with some interest.
I wonder why commercial options and more condos make a ski resort more attractive. Since when is shopping a big draw for skiers? No skier I have ever known wants to ski in a resort for these reasons. Even California, queen of sprawl, is very careful about the effect of building in mountain terrain. Shoppers and skiers go to the best prices and any new business won’t exactly have a competitive edge while they need to cover a rent premium at Base Village.
The reasons for a big Base Village plan certainly support the interests of the Skico, Intrawest, and commissions for real estate brokers. This one is a no-brainer. Real-estate brokers and corporations rule. Why should they listen to what the local citizenry wants or doesn’t want?
It seems Initiative No. 2 does question the goals and projects of real estate brokers and the local big corporation. And if it passes, yes, interested voters will have to educate themselves on issues that are not complicated, such as a wall of buildings more than 100 feet high. Yes, it is a good thing to involve the citizens in decisions regularly.
Why should we trust Intrawest and local real-estate professionals when they are the ones who gain dramatically from more development?
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Maybe this initiative does question the motivations of brokers and big corporations. Check the source of the various opinions about this initiative. The people who make money from development seem to be deaf to the facts that the citizens’ group has put forth. These facts are about current empty condos and the reality of how the ski industry is driven by real estate, which does not bring more skiers, just business to the brokers, architects and related pros.
In the end, there will be just another ghostly mall with floundering businesses and empty apartments but boy-oh-boy lots of money was made by some folks. Wow, what happened to the view of the ski hill? Where is the ski hill?
Vote yes on Initiative 2 and let the people have a voice.