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Telluride also talking toll road

Allen BestVail, CO Colorado

TELLURIDE, Colorado Interstate 70 isnt the only place where the idea of a toll road is being talked about. The last two miles of the highway into Telluride is owned by the town, which is finding its real estate transfer tax, although very large, still insufficient to carry the load of major infrastructure work. One of the key projects is maintenance of that road, and the task wont come cheap. Whether or not it has a year or two left in it before it becomes the Santa Fe Trail is mostly a function of weather at this point, says Frank Bell, the town manager.Among the ideas that he and Mayor Stu Fraser mentioned in a recent interview with The Telluride Watch is the idea of applying tolls. Just how serious they are about the idea wasnt clear, but one blogger on the newspapers Web site had a succinct reaction: absolutely terrible idea.

JACKSON HOLE, Wyo. The planning commission for Teton County has recommended that new gated communities be barred. A staff planner says there are anywhere from five to 20 gated communities in Teton County. One of those gated developments, a place called Teton Pines, is the declared primary home of Vice President Dick Cheney.The Jackson Hole News&Guide, in an editorial, concurs with the recommended ban. Gated subdivisions create an us and them environment, an atmosphere alien to Jackson Hole, says the newspaper in an editorial. Gates in Jackson Hole should be used to keep the cows in. Thats all.One dissenting voice is from a planning commissioner Joe Palmer. I can think of people who would need a gated community, he said. So I dont think its wise to forbid them.

DURANGO, Colorado The tourism business continues to grow in Durango, even as the city loses hotel and motel rooms, some 350 of them altogether in the last five years. Tourism officials believe there are about 1,700 rooms available.One motel is being converted into condominiums, and another into a pharmacy, and so on down the strip. Room rates vary tremendously, from $30 per night in mid-winter to up to $300 in summer, the busiest season in Durango, owing in part to the narrow gauge railroad and also to the proximity of Mesa Verde National Park.Al Harper, owner of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, says hed like to see about 1,000 more rooms. We hear about Well, we cant do this or that because the airlines wont come, but if you dont have the facilities for tourism, the airlines arent going to come.


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