Guest Editorial, March 9-11, 2011
Land use is not the only issue. Park City as a community needs to decide who and what we want to be. We need to do this now. Right now the state government is making that decision for us. Based on the growth we’ve experienced, the state government believes we can handle another industry. Why? Because as a community we haven’t realized this. Thus, the need is for this community to come to a decision. The state and developers have been making these decisions for us. So far we’ve said no to MIDA and no to the movie industry. The more we say no, with no decision on what we will accept, the more state hears "no," the more indecisive we are, the more difficult we are to deal with. This will give them reason enough to decide for us. We will end up with an industry we really don’t want.
So what do we want to be when you grow up, Park City? Our development has brought us to another crossroads.
Kimball Junction has a tech park planned. Tech parks support light industry and manufacturing. Is there a plan to bring that up here? Is that what we want? The movie industry wants to come and build where we don’t want them. Yes, more traffic, more parking. As a tourist community, we depend on the ski season. How long will that season be with more people, more pollution? Where will this industry get its water? Where will we park all these new workers?
We the people must do more than speak out. We must speak up! I like art galleries and music. In tourist communities, these have been the most beneficial and positive people to actively contribute and beautify the areas around them with the smallest environmental impact and economically viable. Academics, a small community college like the ones in Steamboat or Breckenridge, seem to work. How about art, music, athletics and academics? Park City schools are good; the kids are smart. Do we offer them factory and movie jobs or the educational, creative, and the healthy environment where these opportunities exist so there choices aren’t so limited?
What say you, Mom and Dad?
We leave our mayor and city council in the wind to deal with the state and developers to make these choices for us because we have yet to decide as a community our own course of action and growth. Rather than constantly having to tell the state "no," let’s go to them with what we will accept so the tables are turned. We need to start saying "no" less as a community to the state government! That is a very dangerous trap to fall into, especially with politics, Yikes! Raise the issue, put it on the ballot come to a conclusion. This way the people we elect know what we want. It gives them a solid foundation to work from. A must in politics.
The 30 acres in dispute at Quinn’s Junction: Well, here’s my suggestion. Buy the land, clean it and turn into Park City Community Gardens, Inc.! Anyone with any common sense at all knows that UDOT will need that land to widen the road. The only development is where to store the fertilizer for the Gardens, rather than being buried beneath it by the state political machine.
Two people indicated in interviews they are considering mounting campaigns for the Park City Council, a signal the City Hall election could attract an intriguing slate of candidates in a year when the majority of the five seats are on the ballot.