Glenwood City Council Candidate Q&A: Dave Sturges
Editor’s note: This is the final question & answer article from Glenwood Springs City Council candidates Bruce Christensen, Shelley Kaup, Russ Arensman, David Blazier and DavidSturges.Name: Dave SturgesAge: 66Birth place: Webster Groves, Mo.Occupation: Strategic planner, mediator, facilitator, driver of Downtown Drugs’ “Drug Bug”Years lived in Glenwood Springs: 30 yearsWhy do you want to be on City Council? I believe I can help our community move forward on a number of complex issues that need some direction and commitment.What would you hope to accomplish by being on City Council? I hope to help our community discuss and decide some of the opportunities and challenges that face us and our future residents and workers.What do you like to do in your spare time? Read, attend meetings, exercise, and walk in the Hot Springs pool.Which seat are you running for, what part of town does that represent, and are you running against anyone for the seat? I am running for the at-large position, which represents all residents of the city and not just one ward. There is another candidate (David Blazier) for this position.Name three important issues facing Glenwood Springs: Confluence Park, pedestrian safety and traffic congestion, and more affordable housing options.What jobs or experiences would lend themselves to your success on City Council? As an attorney for more than 30 years, with the last 19 years in Glenwood Springs, and having worked at the federal, state and local government levels, I am very aware of the various roles and responsibilities of these governments and how their decisions can directly or indirectly impact our community and region. My work in land use and environmental issues has taught me the importance of recognizing the close relationship between these issues and maintaining the economic, physical and social vitality of our community and region.Have you been involved in any government positions or community leadership positions before? I have served six years on the city Planning and Zoning Commission, nine years on the city Transportation Commission, and five years on the state Water Quality Control Commission. I have served on the boards of United Way and LIFT-UP and currently serve on the boards of 2 Rivers Community Foundation and Roaring Fork Leadership.What are your thoughts on a Highway 82 bypass? We should pursue the necessary studies for federal and state funding of the alternate Highway 82 route and continue to acquire land along the railroad/trail corridor. Ultimately, we need to determine what is the most feasible and prudent way to deal with our traffic congestion and truck traffic’s negative impact on downtown. Would you support condemning private land to use for public trails? A negotiated resolution of the public need for private property is always the preferred objective. However, condemnation is a legitimate tool that is available for dealing with disputed valuations of the property. Condemnation should not be taken “off the table” in negotiations. Does the municipal airport serve a valuable purpose or should the space be considered for other uses? The airport has served a number of needs the city values. However, the safety of the residents and workers, as well as for the pilots, in the immediate area of the airport may be approaching inappropriate levels of risk. Before additional public investment in the airport is committed our community probably should engage in a discussion of what is an inappropriate level of risk and what is the “highest and best use” of this land.What do you think of the latest version of Glenwood Springs High School? The high school is a very important part of this community. The new building is a very signification improvement for the school. I like the internal design and the use of natural light in the school.How would you like to see the remaining land at Glenwood Meadows developed? I hope the land is developed consistent with the plan approved by the city. It there were some proposal to develop the land differently from the approved plan, the new benefits to the community should be specific and still seek to maintain the overall integration of uses contained in the approved plan. The affordable housing component is very important.What’s the most important thing to keep in mind with redevelopment plans for the confluence area? To preserve and enhance the public access and enjoyment of our two rivers, while planning for the development of multi-use facilities that could include a theater, public library, parking structure, housing, and retail uses. What can the city do to develop workforce housing and how can it be accomplished in light of the fact that other types of development will often net more money? The city should support the development of a regional housing financing organization, develop incentives for public-private partnerships, and examine the development of community land trusts, all for the goal of creating more affordable housing options.What’s the best thing about Glenwood Springs? Our personal connection to our community and our desire to maintain its small-town character.The worst? Sometimes our belief that “our” solution is the only answer to what we perceive the problem to be.Who is the greatest historical figure and why? If I had to choose one, it would be Abraham Lincoln. He was a man of exceptional character and integrity.Contact Pete Fowler: 945-8515, ext. 16611 firstname.lastname@example.orgPost Independent, Glenwood Springs Colorado CO
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