The people of Carbondale continue to ask for the Town’s support and are taking every opportunity to express themselves at all local commission and board meetings. Over 1,200 community members have signed a petition requesting a pause in theU.S. Forest Service (USFS) reconstruction project.

We understand that this is federal land and outside of the Town’s purview, thus we are hoping for public pressure to put a “stay” on the project.

The Carbondale Historic Commercial Core, in which the USFS reconstruction project will occur, is not just a building or series of buildings, it is our Main Street and a corridor of our town’s history. 

The USFS lot is woven into that historic fabric with buildings constructed in the ‘30s surrounded by majestic old trees, the majority of which will be torn down. 

While we understand the USFS requires a new facility, the people of Carbondale have been outspoken in their opinion that the proposed structure should be required to acknowledge and respect the context of our town’s Historic Commercial Core zone district which surrounds it.

At this point, people have questioned whether proper public outreach was employed. It may be that a “categorical exclusion” was invoked to allow a streamlined review process. 

I and others respectfully request the project be put on hold for a review of that process to ensure that proper protocol for both public comment and environmental assessment was followed.

John S. Williams

Oh Carbondale
Oh Carbondale, “So long, it’s been good to know yuh.” (Woody Guthrie, from the dust bowl days.) These words came to mind when I looked at the rendition of the new buildings proposed for the vacant lot north of the 7-Eleven and Remax offices. These buildings resemble the new apartments across the highway. They are two-story buildings that contain another ANB Bank, ground floor commercial space, and second-floor apartments. They are applying for a change of zoning to “mixed-use.” The design description Carbondale uses for new buildings in this area is “new urbanism.” 

One of the 10 principles of intelligent urbanism, as defined by Wikipedia,  is “a balance with tradition.” My question here is, whose tradition? When I first saw the plans for the newly constructed apartment buildings on the other side of 133, I asked the town planner why the buildings were sited so close to the highway. They told me that was a requirement of the zoning. But, I said, the existing buildings around the roundabout were all set back with the parking in front. This moves the structures away from the highway traffic and preserves the sightlines to the surrounding hills. This preserves the “sense of place.” 

If set back, the new apartments there would have a little less noise, a little cleaner air, and more privacy. A Google Map view of the north end of 133 shows most of the existing buildings set back from the highway. Likewise for the several buildings south of Main Street. The streetscape is open and airy. I’d say that is our “tradition.” 

The town’s Comprehensive Plan calls for preserving Carbondale’s “small-town character.” 

Bringing the “city” to Carbondale (new urban) ain’t that. Interestingly, the recent growth in Carbondale has brought many new people who mainly come from cities. So for these folks, the new buildings and heavier traffic are the norm. Those of us who have been around for a few decades aren’t so accepting.

Patrick Hunter

Yard waste thanks
As we wind up summer and put our abundant, beautiful gardens to bed, I send a formal open declaration of gratitude to the Town of Carbondale for sponsoring the yard waste program every other Saturday through the summer. Town of Carbondale partners with the folks at EverGreen ZeroWaste and every other week my car would be filled with a minimum of 10-15 bags of trimmings, weeds, etc. that otherwise would go to the landfill. Our town needs this program and supports its continuation for next year. It takes a lot of energy, time and money to keep our town, our yards and our parks beautiful. 

Thank you to all the local gardeners and Town Maintenance folks for a beautiful summer and for keeping Carbondale the beautiful place we all love to live!

Thank you EverGreen ZeroWaste and Town of Carbondale for making this possible.

Lisa Dancing-Light

MANA thanks
After what I would call an epic summer, welcome to the fall of 2023. The big question I have is, will this winter be nearly as good as last winter or even better?

There was a group last week at MANA Foods adding their energy to the nature spirits blessing on Carbondale this past equinox. We did this by reading a sacred yoga text non-stop for three days. The people who read for an hour added strength to the Health Portal supported by the Adi Shakti Ashram.

This nonprofit believes a healthy mind, body, and spirit contribute to a healthy environment supported by all the unseen forces that bring Carbondale some of the finest weather on the planet. After watching the news this summer, with all the wild weather across America, this equinox had special meaning for me.I was surprised that several people read four or more hours, with one of those traveling from Meeker to participate. Making our community sustainable and healthy was the thread that brought all these committed people together.Thanks to all the readers and those supporting MANA Foods during our celebration.

For those who have not been in MANA Foods yet, come and see the healthy, local, sustainable foods this team has for your family. We strive to be the complete grocery store for those who believe eating healthy is the reason to put nutrition in the body along with enjoying some healthy snacks.

Roop Khalsa
New Castle

Pollinator Chocolate is proud to know Chef Barclay and Bosq. Congrats for their recent Michelin star win! Best of luck in everything, Barclay, even though we know you don’t need it.

Mark Burrows


Vote for Betsy
I believe Betsy After is the ideal person to help address the challenges facing the Roaring Fork School District today, while also setting the district on a more positive strategic trajectory for the long-term. She uniquely possesses the qualities and capabilities needed to ensure our schools serve students, attract, and retain high quality teachers, and reflect our community’s values in a fiscally responsible manner.

I’ve known Betsy for 15 years personally and professionally and have admired her passion, attention to detail, and effective leadership style. Working together at Rocky Mountain Institute, I witnessed Betsy’s ability to harness the unique skills and perspectives of the teams she manages to achieve great results. She’s a leading fundraiser for the organization and has helped fuel their impressive growth.

Amid this professional success, she also constantly gives of herself to her community and family. Betsy has served on boards like the Basalt Regional Library and Mt. Sopris Montessori School, all while helping run a local business and raising two awesome kids. (She’s a great mom, not that this should factor into decision making, but it’s something I really respect about her!)

For these and many other reasons, when I fill out my ballot, I’ll be checking the box next to Betsy After’s name. For the future of our district, the students it serves, and the staff it employs, I hope you’ll do the same!

Kelly Vaughn

Ever After
I am writing in support of Betsy After’s candidacy for District B of the Roaring Fork School District Board of Education. I had the pleasure of serving on the Mt. Sopris Montessori School board during Betsy’s tenure as the board president. I found her to be an engaged, knowledgeable, and effective leader. She successfully steered the school through the academic and financial challenges of COVID and a corresponding leadership change.

I recently spoke with Betsy about her candidacy for the school board and was impressed. She demonstrated deep knowledge of the district’s most urgent challenges (i.e. teacher retention, fiscal responsibility, improved communication) and the skills and motivation to address them. She is eager to utilize her strengths to serve students, teachers and our broader community. With two young children in district schools, she is committed to serving the district over the long-term.

The Roaring Fork School District needs balanced, thoughtful leaders like Betsy to ensure that all students have access to a high-quality education. I will be voting for Betsy on Nov. 7 and encourage my fellow parents and community members to do the same.

Clair Rummel

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