Letter: Help the lodges before they fail | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Help the lodges before they fail

We say we are sick of third-story, multimillion-dollar penthouses in the core, and then we outlaw new ones because otherwise those nasty developers will keep building them (an action I support). Then a developer shows up who actually does not want third-story penthouses as part of his business model and we excoriate him anyway.

For decades, in as comprehensive of a community plan as anywhere, we say every time we want affordable lodging. Then Mayor Steve Skadron asks a local developer to do affordable lodging, and, well, once again we drag the developer over the coals, even though it was our mayor who suggested the development.

I voted for Base2. The one thing I did not like about it was how existing lodges, those that did provide affordable housing and parking and maybe got nailed on heights, were left saying, "Why not us?" Given the unlikely nature of us ever getting the kind of hotel Hunt and Skadron came up with, I think it is high time that the City Council reach out to existing hotels to find out what we can do to help keep them in business. Small lodge owners can't live forever. They or their families will sell and want the most they can get. I get that, I would too — so would you. Rather than waiting for that to happen, let's be proactive and work with existing lodges to figure how, and if, we can help.

Scott Writer

Aspen

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