Marci Krivonen

The $7.5 million dollar sale of Aspen’s Smuggler Mine Friday marks another chapter for a piece of land rich with history. The limited liability company Aspen Green Mountain purchased the 29-acre parcel from a group of friends whose connection with Smuggler includes heartache and hard work. Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen reports.

Dana Knight loads a trailer on a cloudy, rainy day. The now former owner of the Smuggler Mine property ran an auto repair shop on it for years, not far from the mine’s entrance.

Creative Commons/Flickr/Ed Schipul

A new study in Aspen and Snowmass Village will attempt to quantify just how large the “vacation rental by owner” sector is. 

More visitors to Aspen and Snowmass are using websites like Airbnb and VRBO to book overnight stays. It’s unknown, though, how big this sector is compared to traditional hotels and lodges. The tourism agencies Stay Aspen Snowmass and Destimetrics are trying to find out. Bill Tomcich is with Stay Aspen Snowmass.

Valley Roundup brings together a panel of guest journalists who provide additional insights, analysis and context to the week's top stories.

Elise Thatcher

To replace the aging Grand Avenue Bridge in Glenwood Springs, the Colorado Department of Transportation needs more money. On Thursday (7/16) CDOT will request funding from the Elected Officials Transportation Committee. 

For decades the Aspen Valley Land Trust has kept open spaces in the Roaring Fork Valley from being developed. Now, the organization’s director is preparing to step down. Martha Cochran sat down with Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen. She says the work AVLT has done to permanently preserve land is not just critical for views and historic land uses, like ranching, it’s important for wildlife.

Martha Cochran is executive director of Aspen Valley Land Trust. She’s stepping down at the end of the year, but intends to stay in the Roaring Fork Valley.

Creative Commons/Flickr/David Leo Veksler

The City of Aspen will target homes and neighborhoods in a push to reduce its carbon footprint. The latest inventory of pollutants shows Aspen is falling behind in meeting goals to reduce emissions. 

Since 2004, greenhouse gas emissions in Aspen have dropped by 7.4 percent. Ashley Perl is with the City’s Canary Initiative that tracks this data.

"That’s no small task for our town because we’ve been growing a lot and our economy has grown as well, and we’ve enjoyed a great quality of life while continuing to reduce emissions.”

The marijuana industry in Colorado got some attention at the Aspen Ideas Festival last week. Festival participants toured a grow operation near Basalt and heard from experts about the somewhat bumpy rollout of recreational pot. Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen reports.

There’s a few rules before you take a tour of High Valley Farms near Basalt.

Marci Krivonen

An effort to make Aspen a “City of Wellbeing” is underway. The initiative is in its beginning stages, but would connect community agencies, organizations and businesses to fill gaps in mental and physical health in the valley. Local resident Gina Murdock is spearheading the idea.

"We have a lot of healthy, fit people. But on the other side, we have one of the highest suicide rates in our county, per capita. So, for me, that’s a red flag. It’s one of the reasons I’m leading this."

Screenshot, Holland & Hart LLP

A Florida development company wants to build a new Four Seasons Hotel near Aspen’s “S” curves, but there’s a major hurdle first. Miami-based Cisneros Real Estate wants to annex nearly seven acres of County land at the base of Shadow Mountain in a residential neighborhood.

Marci Krivonen

Health care, violence and the wage gap are a few topics to be tackled at this year’s Aspen Ideas Festival. The 10-day event started Thursday (6/25). 

It’s the Festival’s eleventh year and this year it looks different.

"We decided to freshen it up a little bit and change some things around, and we’re sitting in a new pavilion," she says.