Vail Daily letter: Against shopping center in Eagle
Eagle, CO, Colorado
On Jan. 5, the town of Eagle will have the opportunity to vote on its future. When I moved to Eagle in 2002, after 20 years in other places in the Colorado high country, I moved here for a reason.
I moved to Eagle for the quality of life and the smalltown feel of an incredible town full of incredible people. Not long after arriving here, talk of a new big box store development began, and a group developers (Trinity/RED) came to Eagle and somehow thought it would be a good idea to build big boxes here.
So, if you are not familiar with this ERS project I will ask you why you would support this project in our small mountain town which has a Target as its big box draw, keeping in mind we have a Target 30 miles to the west of Eagle in Glenwood Springs as well as a Target in Silverthorne, which is just 50 miles to the east of Eagle. And then there are these issues:
n The 550,000 square feet of commercial space. It will all be leased. There is zero opportunity for ownership of retail space. Where does all that lease money end up? Somewhere outside of Colorado.
n The majority of the jobs created by Eagle River Station will be low- to middle-wage unskilled positions which will not support enough people to buy homes at current market prices (and we are in a downturn at this time) or make it affordable to enter the rental market here in the Valley. The jobs lost will belong to our local business owners trying to make an honest living.
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n With no requirement to finish the “new” I-70 interchange for this project, all construction traffic will flow through the Chambers Avenue corridor for many years to come, a nightmare.
n Construction of this project does not have to begin for three years, and lease space must be 60 percent pre-leased. In this or any economy ,how will the developer accomplish this task when the town of Eagle could not even support a Starbucks? Starbucks lasted one year and was gone due to lack of support.
n Nothing about this development fits into the current Eagle lifestyle. We should have development on this parcel, but Eagle River Station is not the direction we want here. We need smart growth, not urban growth.
n Impact on the current downtown business corridor will be devastating. Eagle River Station is located two miles from the current downtown business district, with zero plans for traffic flow to what is our current downtown core. Current local business owners will have no opportunity to own a retail space in the Eagle River Station.
n This property is prime elk wintering ground as the local herds are regularly seen feeding and wintering exactly where Eagle River Station is proposed to be built.
n This is an ugly project both physically and philosophically.
Vote no on ERS.