Printed letters, March 24
In the spirit of full disclosure, I must tell you that I live in the county and will be unable to vote on Referred Measure A. However, this is still an important issue to me.
Many of us in the county have worked in Grand Junction and utilize its parks and trails system. The outcome of this election will affect us.
I have followed the issue and still can’t understand why people are fighting a company that wants to invest in our community, create good-paying jobs and is willing to provide a 50-foot easement that continues the trail system.
If you don’t like what Brady plans to do, why haven’t you purchased it yourselves in the past four years?
I hope the registered voters of Grand Junction will understand how important it is to all of us that Brady be allowed to develop its property and will vote “Yes” on Measure A so we can all enjoy the trail system and point our young people toward job opportunities that pay far above average.
Riverfront zoning must reflect healthy community values
The issue of Referred Measure A reflects community values. Vote “No” to placing industrial zoning on the riverbank in downtown Grand Junction.
We have a very strong community value to continue to clean up our riverfront, as witnessed by the millions of dollars put into this effort by many people. We have zoning which advocates compatible zoning, a community value in the city charter.
Brady Trucking received zoning that is industrial, and this is incompatible to the location. It allows hazardous waste, junkyards, loud noise, outdoor storage of heavy equipment and more. Clearly, this is not compatible with residential zoning. Would Chamber of Commerce members be agreeable to allowing any company to have those incompatible uses in their neighborhoods?
People do not want industrial zoning near parks and next to neighborhoods. The longstanding property rights of the residential neighborhood on the south side of the Brady property, adjacent to the narrow river, supersede any property rights of new owners of the area that has been newly zoned.
Another community value respects and protects the bank of the Colorado River for the 85 percent of bird species that depend on the shore and the bank area. There had been a pond that had provided habitat for hundreds of geese. Brady Trucking filled in the pond. Abundant wildlife such as herons, kingfishers, songbirds and deer had lived on this bank.
Leaving something for birds and animals is a community value. Most species do not adapt to industrial racket any better than human homeowners or park users. This community attempted many times to help Brady find an appropriate area.
Another value is providing a nice area for our visitors. It would be better to have shops and restaurants that provide jobs. Vote “No” on Referred Measure A.
Placing trucks in floodplain smarter than having buildings
I am urging a “Yes” vote on Referred Measure A regarding the zoning for Brady Trucking.
As someone who made my living in the private sector and not the public sector, I read with great interest the information presented by Bennett Boeschenstein in his letter in the March 20 edition of the paper. I have a very different take on the issues and the proposed solutions laid out in his letter.
There were also some confusing statements. For example, the council was not “deadlocked” when it voted to zone the Brady property. If it had been, the ordinance would not have been enacted in the first place. It takes a majority vote of the City Council to enact an ordinance.
I also take exception with his comment about supporting a riverfront that is free from industry and waste dumps. These are two very different uses, and to use them in the same sentence is unfair to many job creators in this community.
We have multiple industry locations along the riverfront trail now, and I hope they continue to create and sustain good-paying jobs for the citizens of this community. The primary waste dump we had on the river is now Los Colonias Park, which we still need to ensure is no longer harmful to our citizens before developing, but I will save that discussion for another day.
Some of the Brady property is in the floodplain, but that is why this property is a good fit for Brady. No permanent structures will be built, and the trucks that are parked there can be moved if there are flood events. The assertion that Brady should just move shows how little regard there is for private property rights and the costs of doing business.
Make no mistake: A “No” vote is a slap in the face to a good local employer and does nothing to support its expansion or its private property rights.
Vote “Yes” for jobs and the extension of the trail that Brady will provide.
Don’t abandon the riverfront for a few high-paying jobs
Here we sit in a beautiful valley with a few towns and a city with urban areas. Through our valley runs the lifeblood for millions more downstream. The Colorado River is this lifeblood.
The entire valley has worked tirelessly to turn toward this river, celebrate what it is and clean the dumps past folks created. There are many reasons, such as beauty, tourism and agriculture.
This valley has been seduced by natural-resource exploration a few times before, going bust and left high and dry. We never seem to learn this lesson. We think this time it’s going to be different.
We want all that the big money brings. We want the high-paying jobs, which then entice our children from school, saying, “Why graduate when I can go make the big bucks driving trucks and working in the latest natural-resource exploration adventure?”
We are losing sight of the real issues. We’re thinking we should once again allow our lifeblood resource to become re-industrialized. With the re-industrialization come more insults to our environment, such as air quality.
Think of the winter and our inversions, of the 24/7 light pollution and the noise. Why? All because of a few jobs that pay above minimum wage. Really?
We are losing sight of quality of life, the dreams and labors and more than $100 million already spent to reach our vision of a vibrant riverfront. Would we abandon the riverfront again all because of a few jobs? Are we being seduced by natural resource exploration?
Industry belongs in the Grand Valley. There are several areas zoned industrial with land begging to be developed. These are the areas where industry belongs and not on our riverfront. Vote “No” on Referred Measure A.
Unsightly billboards trash beautiful views
Look around when you’re driving around town. The gateways to the valley and the key corridors and arteries in and out of Grand Junction are increasingly being filled with the visual pollution of giant billboards.
We now find cherished views of the Bookcliffs, Mount Garfield, Grand Mesa, the monument and the sky itself grossly blocked by in-your-face billboards. This is a great pity, for their effect substantially degrades both our natural and urban environment for the sake of crass commercialism.
The proliferation of these monstrous eyesores is the result of the failure of the Grand Junction City Council and the Mesa County government to implement the goals and guiding principles of the Comprehensive Plan for development adopted by both in past years.
The plan repeatedly calls for preserving and reinforcing the aesthetics of areas visible to the public and for protecting and enhancing scenic vistas. It cites the consensus of residents thus: “As a community, we value our agricultural background; we enjoy open space and a small town feel.” A major goal is to “create attractive public spaces and enhance the visual appeal of the community through quality development.”
In the development of parks, both the city and the county have done these things, but their failure to curb the blight of billboards has badly damaged the quality of life here.
Maybe the newly elected commissioners and City Council members will see the need to impose regulations that would carry out long-accepted policies that would prohibit the visual trashing of the valley.