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Greg Rulon's Blog

By Greg Rulon and Stacey K. Kelly | Agent in Snowmass Village, CO
  • The Roaring Forks River Valley: A Community of Innovation

    Posted Under: Quality of Life in Aspen, Traffic & Public Transportation in Aspen, In My Neighborhood in Aspen  |  August 3, 2012 8:24 AM  |  247 views  |  No comments

    There are a few words that embody the kind of people who are drawn to live in Snowmass Village and Aspen; they are imaginative, innovative, visionary and deeply committed to making their community and their world a better place. Just one more example of these character traits has manifested itself within the transportation system of the Roaring Fork River Valley. Excellence and innovation of this caliber are bound to be noticed, so it was not great surprise when The Snowmass Times reported on August 1st that the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority and the VelociRFTA, had been honored by the White House as a Champion for Change for Transportation Innovation.

    The Champions for Change is a program created by President Obama to celebrate the efforts of every day Americans in making the world a better place. According to the website for the Champions for Change, the program is a way to honor stories of innovative people throughout the country and to recognize their efforts on a weekly basis. President Obama, whose first election campaign was fueled by grass-roots efforts and driven by the hope for change, has tapped into this message through the Champions for Change, reminding everyday Americans that change is possible on every level. The site state, “All across the country, ordinary Americans are doing extraordinary things in their communities to out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build the rest of the world.”

    Aspen and Snowmass Village are a living testimony to this message as since their inception as a small mining town, and then ranching town they have transformed their identity to become a cultural, athletic and intellectual hotspot throughout the world, while still retaining respect and admiration for their founders and their history.

    RFTA and Jacque Whitsitt, vice-chairwoman of RFTA’s board of directors, were recognized by the Champions for Change award due to their recent work to initiate an increase in sales within the Roaring Forks River Valley to assist RFTA in creating the VelociRFTA, a rapid bus transit system. The VelociRFTA will use compressed natural gas, and will provide service to 42 miles of highway, connecting five separate cities along Highway 82, enabling the individuals within the Roaring Fork who work in cities up and down the highway, fast, efficient and low cost transportation.

    Ms. Whitsitt represented the RFTA in Washington on July 31st as one of only 14 organizations in the nation to receive the award. Ray LaHood, U.S. Secretary of Transportation honored Ms. Whitsitt and the RFTA with these words, “You’re a model of cooperation. You’re a model for putting your friends and neighbors to work. You’re a model for implementing the first rural BRT project in the country. So I came here to say congratulations to all of you.”

    Greg Rulon and his team extend their warmest congratulations to the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority for their recent award and for all of their hard work in making the Roaring Forks River Valley the best place in the U.S. to call home.

    To become part of this incredibly innovative community click here to see homes, condos and residences in the Aspen and Snowmass Village area today!

  • Snowmass Village, a Town of Presidential Caliber

    It is not something that happens very often, when industry pushes aside deadlines and budgets and pursues the greater good of the community. But just slightly more than a year ago, the Snowmass Water and Sanitation District did just that. When a bulldozer operator uncovered the first bones of the Columbian mammoth inside Zeigler Reservoir in the fall of 2010, managers and owners of Gould Construction and Snowmass Water and Sanitation District were faced with the difficult decision to push forward in the project, despite what may lie in the mud of Ziegler Reservoir, or to stop the bulldozers, reign in the heavy equipment and take the time necessary to reveal all the secrets the reservoir.

    Fortunately, the executives Snowmass Water and Sanitation and Gould Construction chose to weigh in on the side of history and allowed scientists from the Denver Museum of Nature and Science the necessary time to explore the fossils uncovered. Today more than 5,000 bones from 41 animals have been taken from the site and are currently being studied at the DMNS in Denver, Colorado.

    In recognition of this difficult decision and the subsequent and sometimes challenging accommodations that followed, the 2012 President’s Award through History Colorado’s 2012 Preservation Awards was bestowed upon Snowmass Water and Sanitation, Gould Construction and the Denver Museum of Nature and Science early in February.

    The President’s Award through History Colorado’s 2012 Preservation Award is bestowed upon any individual, company or organization that makes significant strides in restoring, uncovering and preserving Colorado history. In a ceremony with the governor of Colorado, the President’s Award through History is a great honor for any city, organization or institution. On February 1st Kit Hamby and Joe Enzer, the owner representatives for the Ziegler Reservoir project, received the reward right before rushing off to view the new NOVA documentary, “Ice Age Death Trap.”

    Despite the great honor of this award, both Kit Hamby and Joe Enzer are more grateful for the opportunity to be part of this history-altering event. The real reward has been watching the dig unfold and the treasures of the past come to light. The Snowmass Sun quoted Enzer saying, “It was such an exciting thing to be part of, I’ll remember this as a highlight for the rest of my life.”

    The men presented the award to the company as a whole on February 17th at the Water and Sanitation board meeting.

    Even more remarkable is the fact that despite Snowmass Village Water and Sanitation and Gould Construction’s willingness to put the reservoir project on the back burner and allow the DMNS the time necessary to complete the dig, the reservoir dig still finished on time according to the companies’ original timeline. This indicates that the individuals working on the dig were dedicated enough to put in the time and extra effort to get the job done, while also preserving part of Snowmass Village’s history. A great deal of the work at the dig was also done by local volunteers willing to help dig out and dust bones and help in a variety of supportive roles to ensure every bone, fossil and historical piece of evidence in Zeigler Reservoir was preserved.

    In truth this award belongs to the entire community of Snowmass Villagers. Since day one of the find, Snowmass Village has worked with the DMNS and all scientists in the community to properly preserve and extract these fossils. The support and enthusiasm of the community has been a cornerstone in helping the town and business executives to make the right decisions for the town, the fossils and the reservoir as a whole.

    The decisions by Snowmass Village Water and Sanitation and Gould Construction are indicative of the choices made everyday in Snowmass Village – to choose the right thing over the easy thing, to think about the long-term effect of a decision and to preserve the history and story of their community over making money. Snowmass Village is truly a community of presidential caliber.

    Click here to see homes, townhouses and properties in the Aspen and Snowmass Village area today and come home to excellence.

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