Gorsuch proposal rife with problems | AspenTimes.com

Gorsuch proposal rife with problems

Dear Aspen City Council,

I see now that we are coming up on another set of hearings regarding the Gorsuch proposal next to Lift 1A. Please allow me to revisit the main reasons I oppose this development, as I previously presented to the city Planning Department at their hearings on the subject.

I and now three generations of family have been skiing in Aspen for 40 years. We come a long way multiple times each winter (and summer) knowing that there are far easier places to get to but nowhere would we find the beauty, the ambiance and the caring that imbues this town. So I ask: Why would anyone want to diminish it for the sake of a few more hotel rooms?

Not just another hotel, but one that will rise well higher than anything else on the mountain and, to a visitor in town, loom over the last natural access to an historic ski area as it scales its way up (and ever higher) over the trails.

Beyond that, if approved, you will be creating a dangerous mess by adding traffic of all shapes and sizes to what has to be the steepest road in Aspen. We ski the 1A lift regularly, and I have witnessed firsthand what a little snow can do to South Aspen Street. Disney could make a goofy movie of vehicles sliding backward down that hill, garbage trucks, pickups, rigs of all sizes and, yes, ambulances. All this on a street about to become narrowed.

My last comment to the Planning and Zoning Commission (picked up by the press) was to wonder why, setting everything else aside, the town would want to make it so difficult for its residents to get to that lift entering the area and then squeeze a very popular trail on the way back to the lift. You will have collisions there; I guarantee it!

Regarding this last point, I do not believe the so-called rubber tire solution will help at all, nor will any other affordable means of getting up that hill. People will drive, park and unload just as they do now, only there will be more congestion, certainly not less.

I sincerely hope that the council will table this entire plan until all of these issues are solved, safely and to the benefit of the townsfolk who should not have to defer to a very small number of hotel visitors, most of whom will not ski that hill.

Don Gilbert

New Canaan, Connecticut