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Kristi Ferraro, Avon Town Council candidate

Daily Staff Report
Special to the Daily Kristi Ferraro
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AVONKristi Ferraro moved to Avon on election day in 2000 with some hesitation. She had some difficulty leaving Snowmass, where she lived, she said. But in four years, Ferraro said she has grown so attached to Avon that she now wants to become a councilwoman. I like living here better. Theres more of a sense of community. Its a little bit more family oriented, said Ferraro, 43, a mother of two boys. Were so close t the library and the recreation center. The change was good.I have enjoyed living here and his is the place my children will call hometown, said Ferraro who is one of six candidates vying for one of three seats at the Avon Town Council other candidates include Tamra Nottingham Underwood, incumbent Peter Buckley, Amy Phillips, Bob Trueblood and Ron Moreno.The towns assets is one of the reasons Ferraro wants to run for council.We have such great assets here, said Ferraro, who is an attorney in Vail. The natural setting were close to Beaver Creek, the park, the ethnic restaurants in town. We havent taken advantage of the natural assets that Avon has. The thing that separates us from Edwards is our proximity to Beaver Creek. I just want to make sure that the incremental decisions that the town council makes help preserve those assets instead of deteriorating them, she added.Smart growthTo Ferraro one of the biggest issues facing Avon is the loss of retail and restaurant business to Edwards. Avon needs to make sure it has a vibrant town core, she said. Were so close to Beaver Creek, we should figure out a way to take advantage of that and bring visitors here.If she had been in council two years ago, Ferraro said she most likely would have voted to partially finance a gondola from the town to Beaver Creek. The that would have cost the town $6 million was voted down. I would have liked to see an economic impact study, but the more connected we can get to Beaver Creek, the better, she said.If shes elected, Ferraro said she will focus on smart growth. Lets not develop somewhere else when the core is mostly empty, she said. There needs to be redevelopment to the west of Avon Road. If we can reconfigure the whole thing and make it more pedestrian friendly. We need to become less of a car town and become more pedestrian friendly. With a few changes, Avon could have a very unique sense of place.Avon should be a service center, but it can be more than that, she added. It doesnt have to be the big box store town.Ferraro envisions the towns service center, with the bigger stores, in the east end, while the west end becomes more resort friendly with unique shops and interesting ethnic restaurants.To get the vibrancy we need in town we need more entertainment, she said. We should also take more advantage of the river. The Confluence would be a great place for that. The nice thing here is we face south, which is great for the sun. Ferraro, who supported the preservation of Bair Ranch as open space, said shes also interested in preserving open space in Avon.There are a couple of spots that could become mountain parks, she said.Tackling complex issuesFerraros love for Colorado started when she was a child. Although she grew up in northern California, Ferraros family drove to Colorado every summer. My parents both grew up in Colorado and we would visit family and enjoy the mountains, said Ferraro, who moved to Snowmass in 1994.Ferraro, who has a degree in accounting and law, said her 15 years of experience as an attorney would be an asset to the town council.Im very used to taking complex issues, she said. You have to do a lot of homework, get a lot of background and then present it in a way that is persuasive to other people.When asked what she would do if people from outside the town would voice their concerns, as it happened in July when a 150-foot flagpole went up in the Wal-Mart parking lot and dozens of Eagle-Vail residents attended a council meeting to oppose it, she said she would be open to listen to neighbors.Even if they arent part of Avon its important to take their considerations, she said. John Krueger, a long time Avon resident and business owner, said Ferraro is an excellent choice for the November election. Shes a good person of the highest character, Krueger said. She is honest. She is a parent interested in the future of the community. Shes not afraid of speaking her mind and be pushed around by any special interest group. I have no doubt that she will insist on quality development and redevelopment. Avon resident and Beaver Creek business owner, Brian Nolan said Ferraro brings professionalism and energy to each endeavor she takes on.From counseling small businesses to assuring quality education, her legal expertise and passion for Avon will greatly benefit our community, Nolan said.Ferraro, the president of the Pitkin County Bar Association, also serves as pro bono legal counsel to Eagle County Charter Academy and has previously served as pro bono legal counsel to The Childrens Garden early education program in Vail.

Town requires a more comprehensive vision, candidate saysBy Veronica WhitneyDaily Staff WriterQ: What do you expect your job to be as a council member? A: As an Avon Town Council member, I expect my job to be an advocate, visionary and strategist for the town and its citizens. As an advocate, I will need to carefully consider each action proposed by the Town Council and take actions that will benefit and improve the town. As a visionary, I will need to work with the community to create a vision of what we want Avon to become in one year, five years, 10 years and 20 years. As a strategist, I will need to work proactively to make that vision a reality. Too many times in the past, the Town Council has only been reactionary, simply waiting for others to make a proposal and then making a decision on that proposal. I believe the Town Council needs to actively pursue projects that benefit the town, like the redevelopment of the town core, and take actions that will give private landowners incentives and assistance to redevelop their property.Q: How do you manage growth in the town?A: Avons failure to effectively manage its growth has left the town disjointed and without any cohesive design quality. The first step to managing growth in Avon is to construct a clear vision for what we want Avon to become, incorporating the values and desires of the entire community. As an Avon Town Council member, my biggest priorities will be to create a shared vision for Avon in its comprehensive plan and then make this vision a reality. It will be Town Councils job to ensure that all future development is consistent with the vision for the town in the comprehensive plan.Q: What are the three most pressing issues in the town?A: The three most pressing issues facing the town are:1. Finalizing a comprehensive plan that creates a livable, attractive and vibrant town, and then working to implement it. The town must put a lot of effort into making the comprehensive plan a vision that is shared by the towns stakeholders and that will cause Avon to achieve its full potential as an attractive, livable and vibrant community.2. Making the town core more vibrant. One of my biggest priorities for Avon is to create a more energetic and inviting town core so that visitors and residents will want to spend a day in Avons downtown, and so that Avon will have healthier sales tax revenues to provide increased services for its citizens. 3. Making the Village at Avon an asset to Avon. The Town Council needs to prioritize the towns desired changes in the Village at Avon, and require changes that will benefit the town whenever the developer wants to make changes of its own. Q: Locals have voiced concerns about transportation. Would you support expanding the transportation system around town? A: Transportation is an important service provided by the town of Avon. It helps locals get around town without adding cars to our roads and parking lots, and it helps our guests get to the slopes and to our shops and restaurants. While transportation is an expensive service to provide, the benefits to our town (fewer cars and parking spaces and increased guest satisfaction and numbers) are hard to measure. The greatest transportation shortfall in the town right now is the lack of bus service to the Buffalo Ridge affordable housing units. However, once Swift Gulch Road is connected to I-70 at Post Boulevard, ECO will provide bus service to Buffalo Ridge, satisfying this immediate need. While I believe that Avon should continue to fund its current level of transportation, Avon should also explore more inventive methods of transportation, increasing frequency and routes, consolidating transportation services with ECO and establishing a permanent source of funding for transportation. Q: What do you see in the future for the Village at Avon? A: The Village at Avon can be a real asset for the town. It can provide affordable for-sale housing for local families, a new school for our community and it will open private land to the public as parks and open space. However, development of the Village can also damage Avon and the entire valley if it mars the natural assets that make this place special and attractive. There will inevitably be changes to the Village plan over the 20- to 30-year course of development. The Town Councils job will be to make sure these changes increase the upside and limit the downside of the Villages impact on Avon. The town can move the valley floor development of the Village at Avon in a positive direction by making the west end of town attractive, livable and vibrant. If that can be accomplished, the Village at Avon will have to be equally attractive, livable and vibrant in order to compete with the rest of Avons town core. Q: How can the town profit from its proximity to Beaver Creek? A: One of Avons biggest competitive advantages is that it is right on the doorstep of a world-class ski resort. Historically, Avon hasnt been willing to invest much time or many resources to capitalize on its proximity to Beaver Creek. Avon should explore novel ways of connecting itself physically with Beaver Creek and should cultivate a close partnership with the Beaver Creek ski area and the Beaver Creek Resort Association. The town can also benefit from its proximity to Beaver Creek by jointly marketing the town with Beaver Creek and coordinating complementary events and facilities with Beaver Creek. Avon can draw more customers into its downtown by creating better connections with Beaver Creek. These new customers would increase the demand for restaurants, shops and accommodations that would facilitate the redevelopment of our town core into a more energetic and interesting downtown. Q: What can the town do to make it more convenient to walk around? A: The town should implement signals or other traffic calming devices to make the roundabouts safer for pedestrians and bikers. All new development and redevelopment should make parking unobtrusive, make local streets narrow and tree lined, with interesting walkways, awnings and public gathering spaces to encourage people to get out of their cars and linger in Avons town core. The large size of many of Avons streets should be made less intimidating for pedestrians by building medians and bike lanes as safe havens for pedestrians and bikers, and to calm traffic. Avon should also develop a trail system linking all of the neighborhoods in the town. I know that my family would get out of our car more often and ride our bikes to Nottingham Park, the rec center, the library or to have lunch or run errands in town if there was a trail system linking our neighborhood to the town core.

Kristi Ferraro, 43, has lived in Avon since 2000. She practices Real Estate law with Vail-based Wear, Travers & Perkins. Prior to moving to Eagle County, Ferraro lived in Snowmass where she served as president of the Pitkin County Bar Association.



Ferraro is a local attorney who volunteers her time with the Eagle County Charter Academy and The Children’s Garden early education program. She believes the decisions the Town Council makes in the next few years will determine whether Avon can achieve its full potential as an attractive, livable and economically vibrant community.”I want to promote smart growth in Avon, so that we can develop Avon but still protect our valley’s positive attributes, including natural landscapes and vistas, open space, recreational opportunities and local character, ” said Ferraro, who has lived in Avon for four years.Staff writer Veronica Whitney can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 454 or vwhitney@vaildaily.com.

AVON – Kristi Ferraro moved to Avon on election day in 2000 with some hesitation. She had some difficulty leaving Snowmass, where she lived, she said. But in four years, Ferraro said she has grown so attached to Avon she now wants to become a councilwoman. “I like living here better. There’s more of a sense of community. It’s a little bit more family oriented,” said Ferraro, 43, a mother of two boys. “We’re so close to the library and the recreation center. The change was good.”I have enjoyed living here and this is the place my children will call home,” added Ferraro who is one of six candidates vying for one of three seats on the Avon Town Council .The town’s landscape and amenities are one of the reasons Ferraro wants to run for council.”We have such great assets here,” said Ferraro, who is an attorney in Vail. “The natural setting – we’re close to Beaver Creek – the park, the ethnic restaurants in town. We haven’t taken advantage of the natural assets that Avon has. The thing that separates us from Edwards is our proximity to Beaver Creek. “I just want to make sure that the incremental decisions that the town council makes help preserve those assets instead of deteriorating them,” she added.Smart growthTo Ferraro, one of the biggest issues facing Avon is the loss of retail and restaurant business to Edwards.”Avon needs to make sure it has a vibrant town core,” she said. “We’re so close to Beaver Creek, we should figure out a way to take advantage of that and bring visitors here.”If she had been on the council two years ago, Ferraro said, she most likely would have voted to partially finance a gondola from the town to Beaver Creek. The project, which would have cost the town $6 million, was opposed by Avon.”I would have liked to see an economic impact study, but the more connected we can get to Beaver Creek, the better,” she said.If she’s elected, Ferraro said she will focus on smart growth. “Let’s not develop somewhere else when the core is mostly empty,” she said. “There needs to be redevelopment to the west of Avon Road, if we can reconfigure the whole thing and make it more pedestrian friendly. We need to become less of a car town and become more pedestrian friendly. With a few changes, Avon could have a very unique sense of place.”Avon should be a service center, but it can be more than that,” she added. “It doesn’t have to be the big-box-store town.”Ferraro envisions the town’s service center, with the bigger stores, in the east end, while the west end becomes more resort-oriented with unique shops and interesting ethnic restaurants, she said. “To get the vibrancy we need in town we need more entertainment,” she said. “We should also take more advantage of the river. The confluence would be a great place for that. The nice thing here is we face south, which is great for the sun.” The confluence is the land on the north side of the Eagle River and west of Avon Road. Rodeos have been held there this summer. Ferraro, who supported the preservation of Bair Ranch as open space, said she’s also interested in preserving open space in Avon.”There are a couple of spots that could become mountain parks,” she said.Tackling complex issuesFerraro’s love for Colorado started when she was a child – although she grew up in northern California, Ferraro’s family drove to Colorado every summer, she said.”My parents both grew up in Colorado and we would visit family and enjoy the mountains,” said Ferraro, who moved to Snowmass in 1994.Ferraro has a degree in accounting and law, and said her 15 years of experience as an attorney would be an asset to the Town Council.”I’m very used to taking on complex issues,” she said. “You have to do a lot of homework, get a lot of background and then present it in a way that is persuasive to other people.”When asked what she would do if people from outside the town voiced their concerns – as happened in July when a 150-foot flagpole went up in the Wal-Mart parking lot and dozens of Eagle-Vail residents attended a council meeting to oppose it – she said she would be open to listen to neighbors.”Even if they aren’t part of Avon it’s important to hear their considerations,” she said.John Krueger, a long time Avon resident and business owner, said Ferraro is an excellent choice for the November election.”She’s a good person of the highest character,” Krueger said. “She is honest. She is a parent interested in the future of the community. She’s not afraid of speaking her mind and be pushed around by any special interest group. I have no doubt that she will insist on quality development and redevelopment.”Cordillera, From the Ground UpStaff writer Veronica Whitney can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 454 or vwhitney@vaildaily.com. Vail, Colorado


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