Vail Daily letter: Positive direction for Avon
In response to the claim that the Avon Town Council is rushing into the purchase of a new building, I have to request the community to slow down with your reactions. The negotiating process required our keeping the purchase undisclosed until finalized and I understand how the citizens of Avon could feel left out of the process. The town began an inventory and review of all of its properties in the spring of 2013, including Town Hall. During this period of time, due diligence was performed.
It is important to consider the ideal location of the Skier Building, tying in perfectly with the West Town Center Investment Plan adopted by the town in 2007. It is rare for a property to come available like this and even rarer for a town like ours to have the opportunity to acquire such a building and to be able to pay for it with current revenues. While this entire process appears rushed, I assure you it has been a slow process that began in 2007.
As for the current Town Hall, it is a magnificent location and what will happen here will not be rushed. The building is woefully inadequate on many levels and in need of scraping rather than being the money pit a remodel would demand. While the comprehensive plan calls for the possible location of an inn at this location, it could very well be something different. I, for one, would like to see a tasteful parking garage, along the lines of the Lionshead parking structure, wrapped on its ground floor level with retail and perhaps holding a conference center on its top floor. The town certainly welcomes input from the community and the decision of what will occur here will be well planned and well thought out.
Is there a lot going on in Avon right now? There certainly is. After years of being bogged down in litigation and suffering from the global economic recession/depression, Avon is making changes that are creating a buzz and injecting vitality and interest in our town. Sales tax collections are up, as are real estate transfer taxes, and the town is doing a superb job of supporting its businesses, residents and guests, creating a place where the community wants to come together. In addition, the town’s reserves are fully funded. All of this is happening and Avon property owners will not see an increase on their property tax bill. All of this energy, vitality and excitement with no new taxes, sounds pretty great to me.
Avon mayor pro tem