Vail finds way to save money
Quietly, something rather remarkable has happened in Vail. It has almost escaped notice. But in this town where it has cost well over $100,000 just to set up and take down a glorified white tent, $10,000 to set up plywood ramps for skateboarders, and nearly $350,000 to rebuild a playground pirate ship, town employees actually found a way to save $350,000 or more from repairs needed to make the Dobson Ice Arena safe enough for capacity crowds again.This is big. Maybe it even signals a sea change from a widely held perception that Vail solves its problems simply by opening its pocketbook wider and wider. Fair or not – and we tilt toward fair – that’s the assessment from outside the town, particularly among communities with thinner wallets.Congratulations to Vail Fire Marshal Mike McGee, Public Works Supervisor Greg Hall and Construction Projects Manager Todd Oppenheimer for finding a simpler, less pricey solution to better evacuation of the Dobson than a proposal from Odell Architects.Rather than the more major renovations the architects came up with, the Vail officials saw that widening some aisles and doors, and creating a new exit would solve the problem. Hey, maybe the town and Vail Recreation District could put this team to work on some of those other pricey projects that have perhaps a whiff of manure to them. Deep Throat Bob Woodward, of Watergate and book fame, slipped into town on a mystery assignment Tuesday night. Our own investigative guy, Wyrick, couldn’t wrest his purpose out, but hey, he knew he was here. Nothing gets past Wyrick, who knew Kobe was in trouble before Kobe did. D.R.