Letter: Ricks Stevens will continue to help Basalt | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Ricks Stevens will continue to help Basalt

Misinformation and misrepresentations seem to be the norm in the Basalt election on Tuesday. I am surprised that many don’t remember the improvements and disasters avoided in the evolution of our beautiful town because of Rick Stevens’ knowledge and participation in community affairs.

I remember the original plat presented to the Basalt Council in the ’90s for Frying Pan Village. Frying Pan Village is located at Village Court, by our historic coke ovens. Stevens and concerned residents worked diligently to ensure the council did not approve the original development plans and that revisions were made by the developer. Had this neighborhood coalition not been successful, the coke ovens would no longer exist. The developer planned to build a road where they are located. Rick Stevens and other community members fought to obtain historic designation for the coke ovens and ensure they would never be destroyed. The retention pond off the bike path near the development was on the developer’s plans as a volleyball court. The developer attempted to fulfill the open space requirements by designating land under driveways and sidewalks as open space. The entrance to the development was located on the hill at Riverside Drive, creating safety concerns at this busy intersection. The entrance is now located across from River Cove Court after pressure from this group of residents led by Stevens. A portion of a neighbor’s backyard was to be condemned to allow for connection to Riverside Drive. All these improvements would not have been accomplished had Stevens not rallied community members to fight these shoddy development practices.

The Basalt library and post office are located within walking distance of our schools and downtown because of actions led by Rick and other community members. Federal representatives would not discuss alternative locations for the post office until Stevens contacted Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell and requested he intervene. The Basalt library would be located next to El Jebowl had Rick and other activists not ensured the location of our library be put to a vote by the community. The Rocky Mountain Institute and the Roaring Fork Conservancy could have been a large development had Rick and earlier Town Councils not had the foresight to thwart development on the Roaring Fork River.

The Pan and Fork property is 3.5 acres (four football fields) and the proposed developable land is 1 acre (55,000 square feet is proposed). “Smart growth” is possible on the Pan and Fork parcel and input from OurTownplanning.com showed that the bulk of our residents would like to see some development on the Pan and Fork land.

Honest leadership based on building consensus, community involvement through participation in town events and government, smart growth proponent, and the ability to move our beautiful small town forward is the reason we urge you to vote for Rick Stevens on Tuesday. Thank you.

Miki and Larry Klahn


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