Pay attention: Ever Vail is evolving
Vail Resorts Development Company Tuesday showed the public some changes to the proposed Ever Vail project. As I talked and asked questions I kept in the back of my mind the concerns that have been raised about the proposed project – about the size, whether is might cannibalize existing businesses and that the town doesn’t need this now. After seeing the proposal, my impression is that the scale doesn’t seem too big for the site. There was a reduction in the amount of retail space that now seems more appropriate As for timing, it could take a year or two to get started, and moving utilities and the frontage road could take up to another two years – without starting construction. All things considered, this sounds to me like a six- to eight-year completion time. If you want to hear more, the Vail Town Council will hear from Economic & Planning Systems, Inc. at its Dec. 7 meeting. The company has been hired by the town of Vail to report to the council on what the potential impacts the Ever Vail project would have on the community.The Vail Commission on Special Events and the Vail Local Marketing District Advisory Council held a joint meeting Dec. 1. In the past, both of these groups primarily focused on the summer season. The thought process being, Vail Resorts would use its marketing dollars to drive winter, and the town of Vail would use its marketing and event dollars for promoting the rest of the year. Over the past few years, this concept has changed with more and more town-generated dollars promoting winter activities including Vail Snow Daze, Spring Back to Vail, Taste of Vail, Vail Film Festival, CarniVail and the Holidays in Vail. While all these events and activities certainly benefit the community, I’m not sure that this continued money creep from summer to winter is what the original intent was for these two committees. If it makes sense to then partner with Vail Resorts while leveraging existing and creating new marketing opportunities – which it most certainly does – shouldn’t this then be stated as an objective for these two committees? And wouldn’t it seem to make sense that the two committees consider merging into one, leveraging their combined dollars to market and bring events to Vail? The time may be right for re-evaluating the ordinance about use of the lodging tax funds and consider the possibility of combining the Vail Local Marketing District Advisory Council, the Committee on Special Events and the Vail Economic Advisory Council. The goal of this newly formed group would include driving economic vitality to Vail via its marketing efforts, event funding and to identify or create new economic opportunities for the future vitality of Vail. You know my thoughts – let me know what yours are. The Vail Chamber & Business Association is the leading business advocacy group in Vail and is a communications outlet for businesses that want to have a voice in community affairs. If you are interested in finding out more about the Vail Chamber and Business Association and what we have to offer to business in and that do business in Vail, call 970-477-0075 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Based in Vail Village, our office is located in the transportation center and our doors are open Monday through Friday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Stop by and say hello!Richard tenBraak is Executive Director of the Vail Chamber & Business Association.
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