Vail Valley Wisdom From the Web: Eagle River Station
Vail, CO, Colorado
Project wrong for Eagle
A letter to the editor attracted quite a response. Here are a few:
Don’t sit here and say that Glenwood Meadows is dead and then make reference to people shopping in downtown Eagle. No one shops in downtown Eagle. It not me that doesn’t shop there. It’s the vast majority of residents in Eagle County who don’t shop there! And ERS will bring ample opportunity for local business owners to open shops that people will actually come to (unlike Broadway) and therefore actually be able to make some money and be able to afford living here.
I would much rather have a shopping complex right beside the interstate and in between two highways instead of removing part of a hill to build it like they did in Glenwood. And, this recession is a once-in-a-lifetime scenario. Are you suggesting that no retail shops should ever be built again? That’s what it sounds like.
Please take a moment to check reality. Glenwood City sales tax revenue is 1.7 percent less in October 2008 than in October 2007 and still far ahead of what revenue would have been without Glenwood Meadows. The people who choose to shop in downtown Eagle have already chosen, and we can see the results. The town receives almost as much income from revenue sharing based on Costco’s sales as it does from downtown retail, which contributes approximately $200,000 a year, a very small portion of the total budget.
And since there have been no new retail businesses opening recently along Broadway, how are we to anticipate a new influx of motivated and financially secure new entrepreneurs? Are we also to believe that retail employees on Broadway are paid enough to afford “fair market” rentals? I think not. Please shop downtown by all means, but do accept that there are many items that are bought elsewhere and on line, resulting in leakage.
ERS is a gamble, not a certainty, and if I’m going to gamble I want to choose the game instead of having someone else dictate which number I put my money on to try to recoup money that they lost on a “dead certainty” some years back.
There is only one sensible place to build an I-70 interchange in this area, and that is near the airport and the Gateway Center. So if you want to press for local developement, press for it in an area that already has the basic infrastructure and had its original beauty defaced with pavement and buildings. Eagle still has great opportunities and possibilites, so quit denegrating it and start backing it.