Letters: Eagle River Station can work | VailDaily.com

Letters: Eagle River Station can work

Compiled by Vail Daily staffVail CO, Colorado

Campaign support thanksI want to thank all the people who supported me in my successful bid for a seat on the Vail Town Council. During the weeks before the election I had the privilege of talking to hundreds of you on the phone and in person. Your encouragement and advice were invaluable.I also want to thank all those people who supported me financially. Your generosity allowed me to focus on getting my message out without worrying about the financial aspects of the campaign. This is the first race for which Ive accepted financial help and your kind offers of assistance made a huge difference.I especially want to thank Bob and Mary Lou Armour for their counsel and encouragement throughout the campaign (and in the weeks leading up to the race). Without your good advice and friendship, I couldnt have done this again. Good neighbors are the greatest.Finally I have to thank my wife, Kathy Langenwalter. Words cant adequately express my thanks for everything she did for me during this campaign. Her design ability and relentless pursuit of perfection made all the difference. When I failed in my re-election bid in 2005, I think she took the loss harder than I did. I cant say thank you enough for being willing to step back into the fray again this time. I love you and owe you big time.Thanks again everybody for your support. I wont let you down.P.S. Im trying to pick up all my yard signs. If I miss one, call me at 471-0336 and let me know where it is so I can stop by and take it off your hands. Dick ClevelandCampaign was eye-opening’I want to congratulate Andy, Dick, Margaret, Kim and Kevin on their election success and acknowledge the hard work and commitment of the outgoing council members Rod Slifer, Greg Moffet and Kent Logan, who have dedicated years of service on our behalf. The challenges the new council faces will take thoughtful leadership and commitment and we need to support their efforts by being involved when and where we can whether volunteering on boards or serving on committees or simply attending council meetings; it will take all of us and I know they welcome our input. To all those community members who encouraged me to become a candidate and supported me in the election, thank you. It was a privilege to campaign alongside all the candidates who were willing to put so much time and effort into the process because they care about Vail and its residents; its an eye-opening experience that relatively few people ever get to have. I plan to stay involved with the town government but for now have my hands full as I work to build the membership and make the Colorado Ski & Snowboard Museum and Hall of Fame an asset that the Town of Vail and State of Colorado can be proud of. When you are in town stop in and say hello.Susie TjossemEagle: work with developer For those of us who are skeptics, perhaps a more positive approach would have more public acceptance, rather than a negative attack on the whole Eagle River Station project. I, for one, would support Eagle River Station, if: Trinity/Red would realistically address the existing traffic problems as well as the potential impact from 27,000-plus additional cars a day (their figure). We would suggest that in lieu of our paying the bill on the east interchange on a deferred basis through sales tax deferment, Trinity would front the bill for a west interchange that ties in the Sylvan Lake roundabout to I-70 west of the fairgrounds. This would certainly take the strain off of Highway 6, Chambers Ave., and Eby Creek and its roundabout. It would also provide for the increase in traffic that Trinity/Red promises. Vince can garner more support if he alleviates the existing traffic problems, rather than compound them by placing the new interchange at a location that mainly benefits his project. Trinity/Red should address not only the prospective labor shortage for its project, but also the one that now exists. Vince would be well-served to conduct a survey of employers up and down the valley on issues such as a shortage of visas for outside labor, Colorados more stringent stance on illegal immigration, the existing competition for employees in the valley, and the glaring evidence that his project will in no way ameliorate the problem. Perhaps Vince should consider purchasing raw acreage elsewhere, partnering up with a developer, and deed restricting it to affordable housing with the credits from the county in lieu of impact fees, permits, etc. I know of 280 acres five miles north of Gypsum that would serve as a mobile home park, an affordable housing locale or simply a labor camp. I know of 71 acres just west of Gypsum that would also work; and it would be right on the prospective light-rail line. Vince should not pass this labor problem off to be handled by his prospective tenants. Perhaps Trinity/Red could do a mindset adjustment from a massive corporate/mall concept that is based upon the automobile and truck for its economic lifeline, to one more conducive to a commuter/light rail. Rather than big- and medium-size boxes with phony western facades, it could cater to the small town/owner operator genre of independent businesses in a cluster plan that allows for wildlife mitigation and pedestrian usage. Vince needs to partner up with us in order to have Eagle River Station fit Eagle, rather than coercing Eagle to grudgingly accept Eagle River Station just because we are a bunch of poor folk that need sales-tax revenues that may or may not materialize in our lifetime. Trinity/Red needs to recognize that we want responsible development on his 100 acres a development whose time has come, and seeks to wean us from the urban sprawl that the Kansas City mall-gurus conjure up in their high-rise offices. We need to help Trinity/Red with its definition of responsible development. That means what the general consensus of a small western town demands beyond the aspirations of the developer who is driven by black ink. Perhaps we could ask Vince to pare down the magnitude of his project to something more Eagle so town folk could accept his grand vision. Financially speaking, Trinity should recognize that there is a direct relationship between cost and size. His costs would be substantially reduced were he to accept what Eagle can afford and has to offer today and that is a more modest vision for his project. We, at the same time, need to recognize that he has valuable property rights, also. Therefore we should all be careful to not bargain away reality and practicality for a wish book to a brighter and urban future. Trinity/Red should need our input, both politically and meaningfully, as much as we need its opportunity. Fredric Butler Eby Creek

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