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Mountain News: Good economic news sparse in Aspen



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The Associated Press reports that Jones appears to have won conditional support from Davey Pitcher, president of the ski area, who said he would support a new land exchange between McCombs and the Forest Service "that would provide more protection to wetlands and interfere less with skiing."

City hall won't be shaken

PARK CITY, Utah - After a year of remodeling, Park City's government has returned to its municipal building, a one-time schoolhouse built during the Great Depression that has served as city hall since 1983.

Building officials had declared the old building dangerous, because it could not survive a substantial earthquake. With new walls of reinforced concrete, the 23,000-square-foot building is expected to remain standing during an earthquake of 7.0 magnitude.

The $7 million retrofit also included installation of an elevator, and many measures were taken to reduce energy use. For example, the new light fixtures will dim themselves as sunlight enters a room.

Trees removed to thwart beetles

AVON, Colo. - Bark beetles arrived several years ago at Cordillera, a sprawling, high-end real estate development located in the folds of mountains above the Eagle River Valley about five miles from Beaver Creek.

To thwart the beetles, 23,000 trees have been removed and the logs hauled to other Colorado towns to be sawn into lumber or reconfigured into pellets for wood-burnings stoves. Some of the material has also been shipped for use as landscaping material, the resort reports.

In addition to cutting down trees, the resort has sprayed more than 25,000 trees in hopes of saving them.

Forestry efforts to mitigate potential for wildfire were originally expected to last five years, but Bob Egizi, public safety director, now says he expects the work to last indefinitely.

Eagle County to improve greenability

EAGLE, Colo. - Eagle County has received $1 million in federal funding to help improve the environmental footprint of a low-income housing project located between the Vail and Beaver Creek ski areas.

The 72-unit housing project, called River View, was built in 1978. The county government received $6 million to remodel the project, with $1 million expressly devoted to ways to improve the energy efficiency of the units, create a better drainage to minimize contamination of a nearby river, and in other ways improve the environmental impact.