I am in agreement with residents objecting to a planned 306-stall RV park in the Animas Valley. The reasons for my objections are many – some based on aesthetics, others on local impact.
For instance, just as the lumber industry sees and measures a forest as nothing more than “board feet,” developers too often equate empty land as another neighborhood. But here’s the thing, with another neighborhood – whether an RV park or residential homes – we’re rapidly losing the natural attractiveness that makes Durango so special. We’re also losing our small-town charm as open range looks more like an Arizona suburb. Traffic continues to increase and housing prices rise beyond the means of most Durangoans.
So, beyond the aesthetics, we are not out of the woods with the long-running drought, despite this winter’s abundance of snow. Our town planners still have their heads in the sand/snow, when it comes to the physical, geological limitations on our water supplies. Too much demand for existing water is going to put someone out of business. Let’s not let our farm and ranch families become the losers in this equation.
Bottom line: It’s not just about the huge RV park. The Animas Valley is looking more like a suburb each year. Just because people want to retire to Durango doesn’t mean they should.
Ladies and gentlemen, to use an old metaphor, all this reckless development in Durango is like putting 10 pounds into a 5-pound container. City planners are letting it happen.