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Letter: Use what we have before expanding

A line from columnist Barbara Platts’ “Can’t buy me Aspen” (Aspen Times Weekly, July 30) echoes in my head every day that I wake up and every time I read an article regarding the affordable-housing crisis in Aspen. She explained that she is “not intimidated by the wealth” here because she is rich in experiences. Although there is no denying we are gifted with recreational opportunities, as an Aspen native I feel immensely intimidated by the wealth. We are blessed to be raised here and cursed to figure out how we can build lives here as adults.

Perhaps instead of constructing a few more hundred units, we as a community can figure out how to utilize the space that already exists. It would be great to see more second-home owners offering affordable sub-rentals to working-class people. There are also many innovative architecture firms that build prefabricated houses and tiny homes around $100,000 that are completely energy-efficient. Let’s brainstorm ways to pair large-acreage landowners with people seeking to build very small, affordable homes. These dwellings would look like storage sheds in comparison with their neighbors, and the community enrichment that’s possible surpasses anything I can convey in 298 more words.

Andrew Wickes



Aspen


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