Letter: Developers need to abide by zoning regs
October 28, 2015
I am asking Aspen voters to say "no" to Base2. There have been so many letters and editorials on this issue. The most passionate pro-Base2 letters have been from those who will benefit financially, such as Dwayne Romero, who voted for Base2 variances when he was on city council and who now is employed by the developer, Mark Hunt. Then there are the Bronsons (mother and son). They are good local people, but the son is employed by Hunt. So, of course Romero and the Bronsons are for it — it's their job. And we have also seen letters from certain city council members who approved Base2 variances. They want Base2 to win because they will look bad if it doesn't.
There are so many reasons to vote against Base2 and you have heard them in the many letters and editorials written by lovers of Aspen who have nothing to gain, except the presentation of Main Street and the history and character of Aspen.
The Base2 developer has only come up with an idea that the happening young crowd will go there and that it may be more affordable for them. Well, there are lots of hot spots for the 20- to- 30-year olds, such as the Sky Hotel, the Limelight, Belly Up (all downtown and much closer to the gondola than Base2).
And, will Base2 really be "affordable" as they say? There are no guarantees of what rates will be charged. It's hardly going to be a youth hostel. And the rate being discussed is alone all, except the priciest Aspen hotel.
We didn't have the opportunity to vote against the current Art Museum. The city council pushed it through, paying little or no attention to us. But because of a petition signed by more than 1,000 Aspen voters, we have the right to vote on this hotel development.
Like the Art Museum, Base2 will not provide housing for its employees, or parking. It will, like the Art Museum, have miniscule (or no) setbacks and will be far more massive than zoning would allow. It will be a contemporary, three-story building that is out of place in the neighborhood and it will open the door wide to developers taking over Aspen. Everyone needs to have to abide by all of our well thought-out zoning regulations — why not now?
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