Letter: Fouling a good system

About 20 to 25 years ago, the city of Aspen and Pitkin County seemed to have adopted a sensible philosophy toward growth. In essence, it was a manifestation of planning ideas expressed by planning thinkers such as Christopher Alexander and Peter Calthorp. Locally it was championed by Mayor John Bennet and planner Bill Kane.

It held that the best, most sensible way for communities to grow was not up nor out with sprawl. Rather it encouraged satellite, balanced communities along a transit corridor. To a large extent, this has happened. Basalt is such a community, and so is Carbondale. And the Aspen Business Center now has one living unit per business and some retail to serve the immediate residents.

The Tree Farm proposal, however, seems completely contrary to the above philosophy. With more than 400 more homes, 130,000 square feet of commercial space and a park (the ski lake) that stays private, it seems this is just a regional shopping center that will greatly increase and not reduce traffic. Self-contained balance is gone.

John McBride

Old Snowmass