Summit Daily letters: Viewpoints on upcoming Frisco ballot initiative
March 29, 2018
Check your sources on 2B
This election we have a choice to embrace a challenge or to flee from it. Question 2B on the Frisco ballot exemplifies this challenge. The existing building and pocket park at Third and Granite are under-utilized and heavily subsidized versus the return the community derives from their use. Considering the redevelopment that is ongoing or imminent in the central core and along Granite, and the increasing pressure on the private and public sectors of the community to maintain the high level of services to which we have all become accustomed, in no small part due to a critical shortage of workforce housing, it is an appropriate time to re-evaluate the civic uses at Third and Granite and explore the possibility of workforce housing being incorporated in this site.
First, I should address some widely distributed misinformation:
It has been implied that the ballot question includes the removal of the Gazebo Park behind the Visitor Center. It has been asserted that there exists a planned building designed and ready to be developed on this site, with rental rates referenced. It has been proclaimed that workforce housing in the core is somehow a threat to the "cute and charming" façade that some maintain is the economic driver behind the success of our local economy. One writer recently opined that Frisco has hundreds of workforce housing units in the pipeline, waiting to spring from the earth and that the town intends to sell this Community Center property for private development. Another stated that we could just as easily develop "the dirt lot right next door." Fascinating certainly but one problem with all this: None of it is true. Good intentions and bad information don't translate into effective policy.
The central location of Pocket Park & Community Center (versus County Commons) puts it right at the heart of our festivities and events. The center could be better utilized but not torn down and replaced with a high-density apartment building. Once it’s gone, it’s gone forever.
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2B certainly brings into stark relief a base concern we all share and that can be readily understood. All of us that live here can bear witness to the rapid rate of change we have been seeing in our community and are rightly concerned by it. However, I am convinced that thoughtful redevelopment of this site can yield tremendous benefit to the community.
It is important to understand that throughout the evaluation process of this and other sites for potential re-development, a robust public process was always anticipated. Re-development of 110 Third St. is not necessarily mutually exclusive of a park component or other civic use if that is what the community desires. Question 2B, by re-establishing the use of this site to be consistent with its underlying zoning, will allow the community to entertain a dialogue regarding how best to reconcile any potential re-development of this site with the concerns I have been hearing about the disappearance of existing uses.
I hope that anyone who has not voted yet can take a moment and think about the ramifications of this issue and get out to support 2B. That is the best way we can move forward together.
Frisco resident, business owner
Frisco Housing task force member
Vote yes to Frisco's 2B ballot question
In response to Steve Beck's March 27 letter to the editor on the Frisco 2B Ballot Question, please note the following:
1. There is more accommodating community space located right across the street from the town hall. It is available at any time for a wide array of events. Please call the town to inquire about this.
2. The project, regardless of the final size and layout is to include apartments, NOT CONDOMINIUMS. The apartments will be available as rentals for both town employees and other folks who live and work in town. The project will meet all applicable requirements in the town code. Parking will be provided.
3. The existing Old Community Center is approximately 50 years old. It was the Public Works garage. The roof has leaked, the plumbing is outdated, as is the electrical system. It requires constant maintenance just to keep it operational. That cost is assumed by the town every year.
3. It is interesting to note that some folks believe that, as is, it is a vital element of the commercial core in town, and yet it creates no sales tax at any time.
The Task Force, the council, and members of the community at-large created a vision for a potential project at the corner of Third and Granite. It is by no means cast in stone. In order to proceed with any community conversation, there must be a fully transparent public process. That conversation is easily begun with a YES vote on 2B.
And as an aside, where exactly are the 128 workforce units of housing referenced in the letter?
Mark C. Sabatini
2B is not the solution to workforce housing
I am a retired resident of Frisco and have a vested interest in looking for affordable housing in order to stay in the town I love. We need smart and valid solutions to getting this affordable workforce housing challenge solved. 2B is NOT one of those solutions.
One of the most valuable assets Frisco has is its open space and shared public facilities. It serves residents and visitors alike. It's important our visitors have a great experience because it drives the economy and every business in town. Visitors (and townies) dread traffic jams. Let me remind you where ALL the traffic goes when we enjoy the festivities on Main Street. Granite is the only route for bypass use and it is jammed. And now we want to add more congestion, traffic and parked cars in the middle of our festivity bypass. Smart thinking? I think not. Vote NO to 2B.
The central location of Pocket Park & Community Center (versus County Commons) puts it right at the heart of our festivities and events. The center could be better utilized but not torn down and replaced with a high-density apartment building. Once it's gone, it's gone forever. Why give up such a valuable gem for a short sighted, ill-conceived reactionary plan that addresses only 12 small habitats jammed into 0.24 acres and creates additional congestion issues. Keep this gem in our Frisco vault. Say NO to giving it away.
The final point is future. What do we want the core of Frisco to be in five to 10 to 20 years? I suggest we want the core to be vibrant and welcoming, not packed with high density housing. We need to address parking, we need pleasant looking parks and open space to welcome our guests and host our events. Let's study and learn from our fellow townships in creative affordable workforce housing solutions. Let's first get a long-range plan for our core and a properly scaled solution for housing that's truly affordable and then proceed for the future of our town. No regrets. No on 2B.
Meat industry plays us for fools
The coming April Fool's Day reminds us how the meat, egg and dairy industries play us for fools every day.
The meat industry has developed a whole dictionary designed to fool unwary consumers. The flesh of pigs is called "pork" or "bacon" to fool viewers of "Charlotte's Web" into eating it. Killing of stunned animals for food is labeled "humane." And, cesspools of pig waste that spill into our drinking water supplies during hurricanes are named "lagoons."
The egg-laying industry is arguing with USDA whether chickens laying organic eggs should have access to the outdoors. But few seem to care that, for each hen that lays eggs, a male chick was ground up alive or suffocated in a plastic garbage bag, because it doesn't. Or that laying hens themselves get to live less than one 10th of their natural lives. A number of states have also enacted "ag-gag" laws that criminalize exposes of factory farm and slaughterhouse atrocities.
The meat, dairy and egg industry's fooling days may be counted. Many of us are seeing through the deception and replacing animal meat, milk, cheese and ice cream with kinder, healthier and eco-friendly nut and grain-based products available in every supermarket.
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