Letter: Say ‘no’ to Lundy House plans | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Say ‘no’ to Lundy House plans

I have been a part-time resident of Aspen since 1965, and I have been privileged to live through many changes in the local community. Therefore, I appreciate the foresight of the Aspen city officials to preserve the best aspects of the many transformations in the town. The Historic Preservation Commission provides an important way to ensure that significant architectural buildings will be enjoyed in the future.

However, the current use of the Aspen Modern Historic designation does not seem to honor original architect’s intentions and furthermore allows an avenue for developers to gain significant city variances to the city’s zoning laws. An example of this unfortunate trend is the decision to endorse the developers’ plan for the Lundy House at 310 Lake Ave. The proposed variances will allow a 15-foot structure that is merely a foot from the neighbors’ property and cuts off their sunlight. In addition the added structure does not comply with regulations required for firetruck access.

Developers gain prestige and value by obtaining an historic designation. That compensation should be accompanied by respect for the aesthetic intent of the original architect and responsibility to the neighboring community by not demanding harmful variances in exchange. The Aspen Modern Designation needs to be applied judiciously, maintaining the highest quality possible without detriment to the immediate community.

This unfortunate plan will go before the Historic Preservation Commission for a second hearing on Wednesday and will be brought before the City Council for approval on July 28. All those who fear overdevelopment projects granted under the disguise of “historic preservation” should object at the Wednesday meeting or to the members of the Aspen Historic Preservation Commission.

Carla Berry

Chicago and Aspen