I had happy hour drinks with a couple of pals last night. They live near Two Rivers Road in Basalt. They told me they now buy their gas at the Carbondale City Market. One said he was in there around 2 p.m. and the fueling area had a “mob of cars.” He also said he had a hard time getting back out onto Highway 82 because traffic was backed up on the bridge.
Folks, I wrote about this before the City Market even broke ground. I said this discounted gas station was going to be a big traffic generator. Practically everyone has a City Market value card because that is the kind of grocery stores we have. So we want to use our points. Not me, I went electric. So I loaned my card to an employee. To make the problem worse, everyone coming in from 82 has to use the roundabout to get back out.
To add insult to injury, the “other” roundabout on 133 was not built. That would take people away from the Main Street roundabout. Of course the developers should have paid for the second roundabout. Will they?
Speaking of roundabouts, we really need one at 133 and 82, the idling capital of the valley.
I’m sorry, but what we are seeing is really dumb development that follows exactly the same dumb development that has screwed up so many American towns and cities. Of course towns hire the same planning companies that have done all those other places. We start to hear comments like “new urbanism,” and “capturing the soul of Carbondale.”
Carbondale has a document called the Climate and Energy Action Plan. A lot of effort went into putting it together, including a survey to understand the needs of the community. The main goal was to cut greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030. Contrarily, all the new development is actually adding to the GHG emissions, both for the building operations and the traffic.
Can’t we do better?
A local’s best kept secret no more
I am one of the not insignificant number of individuals that work and live in two different counties. I am calling upon City and Town Board Members, the County Commissioners of Eagle, Garfield and Pitkin, our State Representatives and Governor Polis to improve the conditions and safety measures on both Cottonwood Pass and in the Glenwood Canyon throughway.
Whether it is boulders through roadways, wildfires or now mudslides, the closures of the I-70 corridor and rerouting on to Cottonwood pass has become routine. While I commend the county employees, sheriff and other law enforcement agencies in regulating access to Cottonwood Pass, that stretch of weathered tarmac and packed dirt is ill-prepared and ill-equipped to handle the onslaught of weekend warriors and tourists dead set on avoiding the four to five hour reroutes.
It is disheartening to see that we have become so well versed in road closures to prevent inundating our small towns with a flood of stranded individuals that we are leaving locals helpless, mere minutes from their homes.
The frequency of these disasters is increasing and I encourage my fellow residents to attend your next municipal meeting and contact your representatives to have your voices heard. I know that this topic is discussed annually in recent years and I can only imagine what a final bill on a project like this would look like, but when I am just trying to get to work in the mornings or get home in the evenings and every other car I am passing on Cottonwood Pass has an out of state license plate, I have to ask, when will an inevitable death and the millions of dollars of delayed commerce not be justification enough to remedy this situation?
What was a sleepy farm road, only known to long-time locals and area ranchers has now become a treacherous byway. Our roadways are the lifeblood of our communities, we need our elected officials to take action to keep our roads safe, our communities running and to stop stranding our locals.
A celebration of music, life and light honoring Aiden Case Sheahan, who passed away in June of 2021, is on Saturday, July 17, at 13 Moons Ranch from 10 a.m. to noon. Parking is limited, so attendees are asked to bike or carpool from Roaring Fork High School. For questions, text Tara at 303-709-6404.
Robyn and I are pleased to announce the engagement of our daughter Niki to Scott Hoffman, son of Mike and Joan Hoffman (also of Carbondale).
Weather hot and dry
Earth scorched, ants swarming, nests hot
Creatures seeking cool