Ruffled feathers |

Ruffled feathers

Gerry Vanderbeek

Dear Editor,

Congratulations to City Council! They did it: In one fell swoop they managed to bring city and county together and so re-energize our spirit of community. Glenwood Springs citizens and our neighbors up and down Four Mile Road are up in arms and mad as hell about City Council’s ill-considered vote on the Red Feather Ridge development.

On Jan. 8, Council took an erratic, flippant action by voting 4-3 to toss out Glenwood’s urban growth boundaries (UGB), derisively dismissing it as a “mere line in the sand,” ostensibly to accommodate the urgent pleas for annexation and bail-out by a deep-pocketed out-of-state bank .

Oh really?

What about all the talents, time and treasure that were poured into the preparation of the city’s 1998 Comprehensive Plan, which includes clearly defined urban growth limits based on prominent topographical barriers? What happened to the vision to preserve our historic and small-town character, to carefully plan development within and to work with Garfield County to manage growth and to avoid “sprawl” on the city’s perimeter .

But grassroots democracy is a wondrous thing. A large group of “ruffled” citizens and neighbors met last Tuesday seeking redress of Council’s vote. The meeting was positive and dynamic with full intent to achieve formal legal protection for urban growth limits and a cooperative and mutually beneficial working relationship on growth and development between city and county.

Good leadership is not just about making right decisions but equally about the courage to amend and reverse bad decisions. Since they set a precedent by reversing their Red Feather vote once before, I urge city council to have the courage to do so again. Our community deserves no less.

Gerry Vanderbeek,

Glenwood Springs

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