Letter: Change of heart
October 17, 2015
I voted "no" on Base2 at the council table.
My primary objection was parking. Parking has been addressed.
Setback variances, code allowances, geometric interpretations, affordability, maximum cumulative floor area — the deeper we go, the more confusing this gets.
What I know is this: A box is coming. Our option is a bigger box or smaller box. But a box is coming.
The bigger box has new hotel rooms. These rooms will cater to a new market segment, adding diversity to our community and helping to secure our city's future.
The smaller box will be a commercial space: a bank we don't need, a store few of us will visit or a modern pharmacy competing with Carl's — competition it doesn't need.
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Vote how you will. But know what you're voting for: a bigger box — the hotel — that addresses community need. Or a smaller box — an urban commercial space — that does nothing for local community.
Aspen doesn't stand still. We move forward because we've always remained relevant to future generations.
The smaller box will always be a box. The bigger box will become a vital part of Aspen's future for guests and locals.
I believe an astute community that welcomes visitors doesn't leave its destiny to chance. In 20 years, let's be proud of a cool hotel. Let's choose the right box.
Mayor, city of Aspen
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