Letter: What about park residences in Basalt?
What about park residences in Basalt?
The residences proposed for the site adjacent to the new Rocky Mountain Institute are not, as has been suggested, for second-home owners but for the young-professional community that we’re hoping to attract to our town. The Rocky Mountain Institute is projecting 40 to 50 employees, some of whom would be perfect candidates to occupy the space as either owners or long-term renters. That brings 40 to 80 residents into town (including spouses and roommates) to add to our much-needed density.
Interestingly enough, the position of the buildings has them facing the bluff below Homestead Drive and west of the old recycling station — barely noticeable from Lions Park or from Midland Avenue. What about the revenue from the property taxes from the project versus the cost of purchasing and maintaining open space? At present, going from my personal report of my property taxes, more than 50 percent goes to schools, 10 percent goes to the town of Basalt, 10 percent goes to Eagle County and the rest goes to the Fire Department, Colorado Mountain College, Crown Mountain Park, etc. A rough estimate for the 42 residential units at $500,000 on average will generate approximately $500,000 in tax revenue per year toward our schools, with another 20 percent going to the parks and the town. Compared with taxing ourselves to purchase the developable portion of the property (which we would undoubtedly have to do) and forgoing a huge revenue stream, both through taxation and the commercial benefit to the town, it simply makes no sense. “Density will drive vitality” was one of the five goals of the planning process and perhaps the most important.
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