Su Lum: Vote YESSSSSS for the S-curves | AspenTimes.com

Su Lum: Vote YESSSSSS for the S-curves

I’ll try to keep this as simple as possible, because the information sheets and letters to the editor seem to make it more complicated ? and there will be a lot more before this election is over.

You are being asked whether you prefer that Highway 82, in the area between the roundabout and Main Street, stay the way it is now (the “S-Curve” option), or for a new highway to be built across the Marolt Property (the “Straight Shot” option, called “Modified Direct” on the ballot).

Although this question is only advisory, it isn’t binding, it is critical because the city council has agreed to follow whichever option we choose. It is the last, really the last chance to stop the march across the Marolt property.

People on both sides say lordy lord, this issue has been going on for a hundred years, can’t we finally put it to rest? And the answer is yes, we can! It is the first (and last) time we’ve been given a clear choice, the opportunity to stop the madness.

Vote for the S-Curves and you won’t hear any more about rail lanes and bus lanes and four lanes and cut-and-cover tunnels across the Marolt property.

Vote for the Straight Shot and all of those issues will be reopened and you’ll face choices again, but STOP will not be one of them. This is your final opportunity to say STOP.

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The Straight Shot proponents are throwing curve balls: in the spirit of “democracy,” county residents have been invited to participate in what is a city decision (one writer asked if this meant we get to vote on decisions for Basalt and Glenwood Springs).

Then the idea was raised that the Straight Shot is really more curvy and S-shaped than the S-Curves, which are angular ? semantic distinctions designed to confuse the voters.

They want you good and addled, wondering: is this a city vote or a county vote? Which is the Straight Shot and which the S-Curves?

City voters get to vote twice, so be sure to vote YESSSS for the S-Curves twice. The county vote comes first on the ballot, so it’s important not to skip it when the question comes up again ? the second question, the city question, is the most important one.

Right now, you’re being asked to choose between the existing two-lane S-Curves and a two-lane Straight Shot highway with a rail corridor across the Marolt field and a tunnel going under 400 feet of it, the last decision of record, but it’s a decision that is far from final, so you have no way of knowing what you’ll get.

If you’re anti-rail, vote for the S-Curves; if you don’t want bus lanes, vote for the S-Curves; if you don’t want a four-lane highway, if you don’t want the tunnel, vote for the S-Curves.

We already voted against rail, and bus lanes, and we already have a two-lane highway coming into Aspen. Is it progress to tear up that end of town for years to build another two-lane highway? Even the Straight Shot advocates agree that at best this route will shave three minutes off a downvalley commute.

STOP THE DIGGING! Vote YESSSS for the S-Curves.

[Su Lum is a longtime local who will cover the state questions next week. Her column appears every Wednesday in The Aspen Times.]