Vail Daily letter: Carefully consider Tree Farm proposal |

Vail Daily letter: Carefully consider Tree Farm proposal

Editor’s note: This letter was originally submitted to Eagle County Commissioners Jill Ryan, Kathy Chandler-Henry, Jeanne McQueeney.

I was at the last Tree Farm review, and although I didn’t speak, I submitted written comments for a citizen who had to leave. Her comments were short and sweet, and the line I remember most is the one I hear and say the most — “remember why we came here.” The growing pains we are feeling here are many, but the common thread for those who have to get up and get kids to school or get up valley to work is simply traffic congestion. My life schedule is super flexible, and I steer clear of Highway 82 during the peak hours. Thousands have no choice about when they must drive.

All of us as elected officials must begin to measure the congestion impacts to our community and the region. To truly conform to the comp plan and the needs of the rural community we live in, the impacts to the mid-valley should be considered thoroughly. It is common sense that the traffic generated by any one development is in addition to the current traffic, the traffic of approved but unbuilt projects and the projects that are in the pipeline from Aspen to western Garfield.

We all need to stop approving anything without understanding what we are doing to our neighbors and ourselves. Let’s join our fellow governments in calculating our traffic capacity as a whole, not development by development. Adding another town-size development without this information will truly leave an unmitigable mess for the next generation of leaders.

Please deny in order to stop and deliberate about the big picture. Thank you for your commitment to preserving the uniqueness of this side of Eagle County.

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Jacque Whitsitt

Basalt mayor

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