Court is arbitrary with Avon
While I certainly understand the Avon's desire to avoid any litigation about the Traer Creek development, I believe it is imperative that the Town Council support the Planning and Zoning Commission's denial of the final PUD.
The decision they make isn't just about what is expedient today. It will affect Avon for years to come. They need to take the position that an arbitrary schedule imposed by the court cannot be more important than the future of our community.
Since the proposed PUD goes far beyond the stipulations in the settlement agreement, it should not be approved.
I, for one, am not opposed to responsible development, but the terms that it is developed under cannot be so one-sided as the current proposal is structured, nor can it include many benefits to the developer that have no Avon control once they are approved.
As an architect and planner I work with PUDs every day, and there is no reason that Traer Creek cannot be successfully developed under more reasonable terms that allow town and neighbor input throughout all future projects.
This issue is about the legacy and community we will leave for our children and future generations. We need to make the right decision now and turn down this onerous PUD.
Clubhouse doomed to fail
You might be wondering why there is so much criticism of the Vail Golf Clubhouse redesign. The bottom line has been and will continue to be recreational golf use versus the special event use.
The Vail Golf Club has hosted both uses over the years with the normal conflicts, such as events kicking the golfers out of the dining room. Every private golf club in America has struggled with this issue.
Part of the redesign of the golf course is a separate area for events and a separate area for golfers. Not a bad idea if you have the room for it, which they don't, or the parking for it, which they don't, and the zoning for it, which they don't, or the permitted use for it under the land purchase, which they don't.
Should I mention they don't have the money for it, either? The clubhouse initial design came back a few million over budget. So why are we continuing to go this direction? As with a lot of government decisions it comes from good intentions up front and unintended results later on.
The Town Council thought they could kill two birds with one clubhouse, and you have to commend them for trying. Now that some of the realities are becoming obvious you have to wonder who is pushing for an event space that is larger than the golfer's dining room. You don't have to look very far to see the event space planners are driving the bus. Golf has not been the priority in the design process or No. 18 green would never have been on the chopping block for parking.
If you look a little closer you will find other bad decisions to pick up golf carts on one side of the building and drop them off on the other (so they don't drive past the event patio). This decision adds labor costs to the recreation district and makes no sense to the golfer trying to put his clubs in his car.
The best clubhouse architect in the world can't cram both golf and added special events space in to this location, nor should we be trying.
What's better in 25 years?
Nobody is really surprised that the rhetoric in the presidential campaign is becoming increasingly strident and excessive. We are all exposed to the steady stream of negative attacks on the abilities or ethics of the "other" candidate.
But stripped down to the basics, this is not so much an election between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney as it is a choice between two very different views about the role and size of government in our lives. In fact, this election will not be completely determined by those who are committed Republicans or Democrats. It will be decided by those of you who are still undecided.
When faced with a difficult choice - especially one involving politics - I have learned that it often helps to think about the possible extremes and long term. So for those of you who are undecided, let's pretend.
Let's pretend that our country is split in two, with equal land mass, equal natural resources, equal coastline, equal beauty, and equal national debt - with both halves being governed by the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.
Now let's pretend that Obama and his Democratic colleagues run one country (Obamaland) and Romney and his Republican colleagues run the other country (Romneyville). There is absolutely nothing to prevent either group from fully implementing its party platform.
Next, let's pretend that all current citizens and businesses are free to choose the country where they will live. Now try to imagine what each country will be like a generation from now, in about 25 years.
Does Romneyville or Obamaland have less government debt? Which one has lower unemployment? Which one is more secure from outside threats? Which one has a higher standard of living? In which country will your children or grandchildren be better off?
Whatever your priorities, ask yourself where they will be better addressed, in Romneyville or Obamaland? And finally, in which country would you choose to live?Answer these questions and you will make the right choice in November.
John V. Genova
Not a matter of opinion
On Sept. 10, the Vail Daily published a story by Roseanna Turner about vaccines. The article presents clear information about vaccinations from doctors, hospital specialists, and disease researchers.
Turner includes in her article some opinions from a local parent and a nurse.
In our country, we have a government agency specifically charged with preventing fatal disease and controlling epidemics, the Centers for Disease Control. This agency, as well as independent scientists around the world, have repeatedly studied reported and confirmed that there are not safety problems with vaccines. International research verifies these conclusions and spells out the consequences of not vaccinating the public: fatalities increase.
And yet nurse B. Stott still manages to believe that parents should be supported in making decisions that endanger other people's children, as well as their own.
This was a good article, until the author somehow concludes that debating pseudo-science myths makes us safer.
Maureen Maker Denver
"You can always count on the Americans to do everything right after they have tried everything else." Well, we have tried everything else with this administration, and it ain't working!
Credit due to another Brit
I would like to apologize to Maggie Thatcher for failing to attribute credit to her in my latest letter for her take on socialism.