Guest opinion: After 4 years as mayor, I remain committed to optimism, inclusion and gratitude
Park City mayor
Dear Park City,
Optimism, inclusion, and gratitude: Those are the principles I promised when sworn in as mayor. I believe in the power of positivity, and Park City’s ability to do well, by doing good. That faith has not wavered, but as I walk the neighborhoods, answer my phone and check emails, it’s clear that Park City is frustrated! Standing on doorsteps, residents tell me they are upset about growth, frustrated with traffic and disheartened by over overcrowded trails. Add a pandemic, and we have a lot to lament. But I have faith we still recognize how lucky we are to live here — clearly everyone moving here does. At the end of the day, I believe Park City voters will choose optimism over cynicism, and progress over platitudes.
Optimism: last year Park City concluded our yearlong Visioning exercise having engaged over 1,700 participants representing a broad spectrum of our community. Residents wanted bold action to protect our quality of life and to give everyone a seat at the table. This is a vision I can get excited about! I’m eager to work on new strategies to mitigate growth, bolster our community and address climate change. We’ve had some success in each of these areas, let’s build upon that.
Inclusion: The past few months, I’ve been enjoying walking door to door to hear directly from residents. I want to share an email I received after returning home one night: “It was an unexpected and pleasant visit we had today. Sitting in my easy chair reading a book to look up and see the Mayor at my front door represents everything that’s right in America. It’s easy to become discouraged when you follow the National news and the seemingly unsolvable partisan divide. But we’re connected by more than we think. At a local or person to person level, if we listen and are civil we find ways to solve things…” Encounters like this are why I will keep walking, knocking and listening until Nov. 2.
Gratitude: I am proud of everything we have accomplished over the past 3.5 years. It’s a long list! Park City government has been working hard for you, navigating a worldwide crisis and making steady progress on all of the community priorities. To keep this momentum, you need leaders who will engage, adapt and offer you substantive and realistic plans, not more studies or committees. I am grateful we have the resources and talent to address our greatest challenges. I hope we have the conviction.
Back to optimism: Park City has great means, great minds and a strong desire to bolster and sustain our authentic mountain community. It’s imperative we muster the will to focus, or we could fail through distraction. For inclusion, I ask you to join me in finding our collective grounding. Local government still works, but only with public trust and engagement. I hear your frustration, and I share it. We collectively have built an amazing community that is suffering under its own success. This is good, it’s bad and it can be reason to get mad. But I will fall back on gratitude. This is a place worth defending. Let’s put our anger aside and get to work. I’m all in for Park City. Please join me in loving where you live, and let’s tackle these challenges together.
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“Park City doesn’t suck — its people rock, and it is still a pretty great place to live or visit. Let us be thankful and work hard to keep it that way,” writes Matthew C. Lindon.