Let it go, Ascendigo
Ascendigo is a worthwhile organization that works with people on the autism spectrum. It’s a wonderful asset to Carbondale.
But, a commercial arm of Ascendigo does not belong in Missouri Heights.
Let’s all take a deep breath and hit the pause button.
As a journalist, I have written many articles about the work Ascendigo does, benefiting people with disabilities.
However, all that goodwill generated in the valley is now in peril.
The organization has dubbed its proposal “Ascendigo Ranch,” but it is not a ranch by any definition of the word. It is a proposed commercial — not educational — plan according to many parameters, including those in the Garfield County guidelines.
It will bring money into Ascendigo’s coffers as a year-round business on 126 pristine acres, designated as residential zoning, to one of the most drought-stricken areas in the valley with an ever-dwindling water aquifer.
That makes the proposal a recipe for disaster. And, this time will the possible story be of 100-plus people being trapped with the only way out is a narrow dirt road. Wildland fires spread so past, there may not be enough time to get everyone out safely.
Ascendigo is at a crossroad. The plan would destroy the positive perception of the valley, county and the state.
Why Missouri Heights? Ascendigo tried to use Emma, but the community rose up with an emphatic no with the organization withdrawing its proposal.
Who will be left to support this group that aims to destroy the spirit of Garfield County?
Ascendigo, please go elsewhere and keep the community spirit you have worked so hard to build.
Make it clear, people have long memories when it comes to insensitivity and financial only goals.
A location with easier access to Interstate 70 would show the organization really wants to reach out and be more accessible to people across the state and the nation.
As with the Hunt Ranch fiasco, Ascendigo needs to stop pressuring local, county and state officials to go along with this joy ride. Besides the millions Ascendigo spent on buying the land.