Letter: Growth as an issue

What is the position of current and future city council members on population growth? The population of our town has grown from 4,016 in 1970 to 9,962 currently. Over the past 49 years, the average annual growth rate has been 1.83 percent.

The major factor in limiting growth has been the finite amount of usable land in our L shaped valley. The only recent major subdivisions had to be developed south of town with only Midland Avenue as access. The end result has been a stable population and an improved quality of life for those lucky enough to live in Glenwood Springs.

In the past couple of years, City Council has approved 380 new rental apartments which are under construction (Oasis Creek, Glenwood Meadows and Walmart). Assuming 2.5 people per unit, the population of Glenwood will increase by 950 meaning a 10 percent increase in the size of our town. These new residents will have a noticeable impact on schools, traffic, police, congestion, infrastructure and quality of life.

Land developers will continue to propose new high-density projects on undeveloped property within the city limits. It appears likely that their requests will be approved. Perhaps they may even talk City Council into reducing fees. Even more disturbing, council seems to support selling (or giving) our public land to developers for commercial and high-density residential uses. Council appears to believe that Glenwood needs major private development on public land in North Landing, the confluence area and the airport.

Some believe that government should be run like a business. In modern capitalism, the purpose of a company is to return the maximum amount of money to the shareholders in the shortest amount of time. Growth is a measure of success. In a community, the purpose of government should be to provide services needed for a good quality of life to the shareholders (citizens). Success is measured over decades not quarterly. We need to elect a council that acts as City Fathers and not promoters of quick growth. Growth is not a measure of success for our community.

Charles Peterson,

Glenwood Springs

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