Guest editorial: Successful Treasure bond would benefit all of Park City
I read with interest the article in the weekend edition reporting on Jeff Weissman and his opposition to the Open Space Bond. The more I thought about the article over the past two days the more concerned I became about a couple of points made by Mr. Weissman. Before going further and in the spirit of full disclosure I will say that I live in Old Town and have opposed the Treasure development for many years.
The article starts right off by saying that the deal is “Old Town-Centric” and goes on to quote Mr. Weissman as saying that the Treasure development would be limited to Old Town. “Living is Aspen Springs it is not going to impact me or my neighbors on a daily basis.” Really, is that the attitude we want to take? If we had done that with other conservation bonds, we would not have purchased the McPolin acreage or Round Valley and many of the other open spaces we now enjoy. I do not look out over the McPolin acreage every day and enjoy the green space, nor do I use Round Valley that often, but I definitely am impacted by the preservation efforts supported by previous bonds. This is not about my neighborhood or your neighborhood, it is about our city and how we all benefit from open space. The idea that it is not in my neighborhood missed the entire value of having open space that all of us enjoy.
Mr. Weissman goes on to say that he believes “Sweeney has true intentions and desire for a development. I think his true intention and desire is to unload the property.” This is easy to say and the only people that really know are the Sweeneys but let’s assume Mr. Weissman is correct. If the bond issue fails, then the only real way for the current owners of the land to sell out is with a development and once that is set something will get built on the land. Do we really think that the owners will sit on undeveloped land in the hopes that someone will come along and buy it? No way, if their true intention is to sell then the best way (other than to Park City) is to sell to a developer once through the approval process. The idea that a no vote on the bond will “buy time” is simply not sustainable. A no vote will precipitate more pressure for a development and our opportunity for stopping the development will be gone.
Don’t let this opportunity pass us by. This is about the quality of life for the entire city, not just one neighborhood.
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A reader says elected officials’ rejection of UDOT’s plan to widen S.R. 248 is “nothing short of irresponsible leadership.”