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Buy my house, I’ll buy yours, says developer

Compiled by Allen Best

CARBONDALE, Colo. — Wintergreen Homes has a different sort of marketing approach. Buy one of our houses, says the developer, and we’ll buy yours.

Art Kleinstein, the Avon-based firm’s managing partner, says he has used that marketing pitch successfully both at Steamboat Springs and Avon. Now, he’s using it again at Cerise Ranch, a 68-lot subdivision down-stream from Aspen.

It’s designed to appeal to somebody wanting a newer house and a larger lot, but who doesn’t want to go through the hassle of selling an existing house. Kleinstein told The Aspen Times he’d rather discount the price of a $400,000 house that he acquires than a $600,000 home he’s now trying to sell. Just the same, he doesn’t want his offer to be too successful. "I don’t need 50 of them. I just need a few of them," he said.

Film chronicles small ski area from 1930s

BUTTE, Mont. — In the 1930s, about the time Sun Valley was getting underway as the first destination ski resort in the West, the land was populated by dozens of small ski areas, among them a place at Butte called the Beef Trail.

Although the miners and other residents there had little money, they built ski runs, jumps and rope tows, even erecting lights for night skiing. That ski area, now long gone, is the topic of a documentary film recently broadcast in Montana. "The Beef Trail was a physical place all right, but it was really a spiritual place for people to get together," filmmaker Terry Lonner told the Bozeman Chronicle. "They built quite a little hill. And it was a little hill, but it had a big heart."

Forum suggests a freeze on up-zonings

EAGLE COUNTY, Colo. — In the Vail area, as elsewhere, there has been talk for seemingly decades about "carrying capacity" and "sustainability," more commonly lumped in that 1970s phrase "limits to growth." Latest fountain for this talk has been a 10-week forum called "Shaping the Future."

The forum, which was organized by an activist county commissioner, Arn Menconi, issued a 13-page report that strives to recognize the links between the environment, community, and economy. The plan, reports the Vail Daily, envisions a more active hand of government in managing growth, a foreign notion to most governments in Eagle County. Among the radical notions is a proposal to consider a freeze on up-zoning. Under current zoning, the county’s population, now at 46,000, is projected to reach 90,000.