Letter: Wanting to park beneath the park | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Wanting to park beneath the park


Dear Editor:

I would be very grateful if you would please help initiate discussion leading to an underground parking garage beneath Wagner Park.

Instead of thinking up all the reasons not to do this project, we need to muster the vision to understand how greatly a centrally located parking garage beneath Wagner Park would benefit the residents and visitors alike. There were 18,000 people in Aspen last week, and there are 850 parking spaces in the commercial core! Historical comparisons to the Rio Grande parking garage are irrelevant because that was a government project that cost more than it needed to cost and was put in an inconvenient location where people don’t use it — not where the people are or events take place!

I’m hoping a donor might pay for original construction of an underground garage and then engage the private sector to maintain the garage for whatever profit it can glean, understanding this is not a money-making venture — it’s purpose is to serve the community, which also will generate tax revenue for the city.

I think the biggest obstacle will be that people don’t want the dirt and turmoil of construction, but that clearly is shortsighted thinking because the inconvenience of construction won’t last forever, so our challenge is to remind people that we need the vision to think of the long-term benefit.

I am just a lowly activist with a dream of being able to park in front of my home on Durant Avenue, so I call upon the business community to mobilize and take action.

Susan O’Neal