Letter: Arrowhead plans worsen problems
Over the years, Vail Resorts and the succession of interests that have built the Vail and Beaver Creek resorts are to be commended for responsibly creating one of the greatest destination ski/summer resorts in the world, and for contributing in many ways to the infrastructure that services these areas. What a great place to visit.
Additionally, we should all give thanks to the tens of thousands of workers who live in the valley, or commute here from afar, often driving 75 miles or more to and from work each day. These hard-working men and women groom and patrol the slopes, plow the snow, mow the fairways, staff the hotels, restaurants and shops, enforce our laws, serve on boards and commissions, provide excellent medical care, teach our students, build and maintain our structures, and in countless other ways make visiting and living in the Valley a truly great experience. What a great place to live and work.
However, it should be of concern to everyone that there are ever increasing signs that the valley is rapidly approaching its comfortable carrying capacity: workers are increasingly hard to come by and their housing is at a premium, traffic at times is in gridlock, parking is often woefully inadequate, our water supply is threatened by climate change, demographers predict another doubling of the Eagle County population in another decade or so, and it seems that many of the small things that we have taken for granted over the years are slowly disappearing.
On May 17, the Vail Daily printed an article about Vail Resorts’ plans to build a large number of condominiums at Arrowhead on a piece of land that is dedicated by the original development restrictions to serve the public with about 250 day-use parking spaces within easy walking distance of the lift at Arrowhead. This lot is heavily used in the winter time by a variety of interests and its loss would be a great blow to residents of the valley.
It is simply unacceptable that Vail Resorts could be allowed to run roughshod over this restriction, and I question whether the spirit and intent of the original planned unit development document would permit anyone to cover the existing parking lot with buildings even if they built a corresponding number of public parking spaces in a parking structure on the same site. Whatever happened to the wisdom of “take some, pass some, leave some?”
The Arrowhead Homeowners Association, adjacent metro districts, Eagle County Planning and Zoning Commission, and the public at large should keep a sharp eye on this and other proposals before there is no “there” there anymore for all the folks who call the valley home.
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