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Gut check for Vail leaders

Don Rogers

The town staff filed a 45-page report refuting every exaggeration the appellants through in, though we must have missed the delicate wording about the sins of putting a “homogenous” demographic group in such close quarters in an apartment building setting. It didn’t merit the dignity of an answer, frankly.

The staff and a consultant called in to offer yet another opinion managed to keep a straight face in refuting the notion there’s some great architectural style on the north side of I-70, that somehow the rockfall hazard at this site is extreme while it’s apparently not much a problem for the rest of the six miles of buildings near the mountainsides on the north side of I-70, that there’s a great danger to Middle Creek dwellers when they leave the complex that no other residents of Vail face, that the complex doesn’t fit the land use plan and the rest of a bunch of complaints tossed into print like spaghetti on a wall.

So much useless, irrational energy comes from the genuine eyesore just east and up, up, up from the Mountain Bell site. Most of the folks appealing the decision to build what we think is a genuine need for Vail have some impressive homes indeed up on the hill. Their average value runs in the $7 million range, and heated square footage runs from the low 5,000s to 8,000.

And they are impressive, world-class people, to be sure. Lee Raymond, for instance, is the president and CEO of Exxon. Then there’s William Esrey, chairman and president of Sprint.

Dr. Richard Steadman, who actually lives in his home, is one of the foremost orthopedic surgeons in the world.

We’re certainly proud that they and lots of other bigtime folks call Vail home or second home.

We’re just scratching our heads over how people that obviously bright about their own business sound so, well, not so bright or understanding about the pearl of the Rockies’ real needs and location for the complex.

Or how they managed to ignore every step along the way to bidding and building the complex until the very end of the approval process.

Hate to say it, but it sounds like they haven’t paid a lick of attention until recently. And as in awe as we of course are at their pedigrees, we’re also puzzling over how their arguments, as expressed through their representative, could be so weak in the logic department.

But nonetheless, here we are, truly wondering if Vail’s governmental leaders have the guts to thank these folks for their input and do the right thing. That, of course, is get on with building Middle Creek. D.R.


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