Citation
El Jebel

Material Information

Title:
El Jebel a residential and commercial development near Aspen
Creator:
Becker, Peter
Publication Date:
Language:
English
Physical Description:
v, 188 leaves : illustrations, maps (some color), plans (some folded) ; 28 cm

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Real estate development -- Colorado -- El Jebel ( lcsh )
Real estate development ( fast )
El Jebel (Colo.) ( lcsh )
Colorado -- El Jebel ( fast )
Genre:
bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )

Notes

Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references.
General Note:
Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for a Master's degree in Architecture, College of Design and Planning.
Statement of Responsibility:
by Peter Becker.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Colorado Denver
Holding Location:
Auraria Library
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
08643376 ( OCLC )
ocm08643376
Classification:
LD1190.A72 1980 .B44 ( lcc )

Full Text

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A Residential and Commercial Development Near Aspen
By
Peter Becker
Masters Thesis
Graduate School of Architecture College of Environmental Design University of Colorado, Denver
December 15, 1980


THANKS
To STEVE ONSTAD
Developer of this project for unflagging assistance


CONTENTS
ST'mNT!
INTRO
EXPANSION OF THESIS PROPOSAL 2
EL JEBEL AND SURROUNDING AREA 11
SITE DESCRIPTION 13
MAPS 20
HISTORV
EL JEBEL RANCH 30
RELATIONSHIPS TO THE PRESENT 41
BIBLIOGRAPHY 45
mnRKCT
BACKGROUND 4 7
POPULATION 54
EMPLOYMENT 58
RETAIL SALES AND RESIDENT INCOME 58
HOUSING 68
COMMERCIAL 71
COST ESTIMATES 72
SUMMATION 79
BIBLIOGRAPHY 81
UJRTCR
BACKGROUND 83
PROGRAM 91
BIBLIOGRAPHY 95


/ \
SOLAR 96
BACKGROUND AND ISSUES 96
PARTICULAR ISSUES AND ANSWERS 99
COLLECTION 99
STORAGE 104
DISTRIBUTION 105
STRCCT 109
PEDESTRIAN SHOPPING STREET 109
PROGRAM 112
OTHER STREET ISSUES 115
OPENINGS ON THE STREET 115
ETC. 118
mOR B'ISHT 124
TOWERS 124
PROGRAM 127
VIEWS 128
NOISE 129
PRIVACY 133
PARKING/GARAGES 134
BUS TERMINAL 136
RGL 141
CODE CHECK 141
SITE CONSIDERATIONS 148
P.U.D. PROCEDURE 150
BUILDINGS 153
SIZE OF PROJECT 154
FUNCTIONS 155
SPACES 157
CONSTRUCTION CHECKLIST 159 CW^ 161 //
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UTILITIES 165
WATER 165
SEWER 167
GAS 169
ELECTRICITY 170
TELEPHONE 171
CABLE TV 173
MAP 175
cummc 176
SUMMARY 179
CHARTS 182
BIBLIO 186
MSTIY 188


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DRAWINGS
PIANTA DEL LOTTO 1
PIANTE DI GRADI 2
UTILIZAZIONI E POSIZIONE DI QUARTIERI 3
PIANTA DI QUARTIERI DI CAMPO: 1ST FL. 4
PIANTA DI QUARTIERI DI CAMPO: 2ND FL. 5
PIANTA DI OUARTIERI DI CAMPO: 3RD FL. 6
PROSPETTI E SEZIONE DEI OUARTIERI DI CAMPO 7
SEZIONI SOLARI 8
SEZIONI E PIANTA DELLA PIAZZA: 1ST FL. 9
PROSPETTI E PIANTA DELLA PIAZZA: 2ND FL. 10 PROSPETTI DE OUARTIERI DI PIAZZA 11
PHOTOS
MODEL DEL GRADI QUARTIERI DI CAMPO QUARTIERI DI PIAZZA
V


srmNT!
THESIS STATEMENT
My Hypothesis:
By combining innovative design, careful site planning and cost-effective amenities such as passive solar and water, it is possible for an architect/ developer to make more people happy, and much more money, than normally. This project, with this site and this developer, seems an ideal opportunity to test this theory.
Q


INTRO
EXPANSION OF THESIS PROPOSAL Project Description
This project is a combination commercial and residential development currently being planned by Asoen developer Steve Onstad and Partners with Glenwood Springs architect Richard Dart, for a part of a thirteen-acre site in the town of El Jebel, Colorado, fronting the north side of Highway 82 between Aspen and Glenwood Springs in Eagle County, 7.2 miles east of the Carbondale exit. A preliminary site plan has been drawn up and the project is currently awaiting a zoning change from R (Resource) to a Planned Unit Development for this 2.1 acres of residential/commercial north of a 1.3 acre greenbelt fronting the highway. Four-plex townhouses are being planned for the 8.4 acres north of this. This zoning change appears to be highly probable given the site's close proximity to the CBD of El Jebel, the nature of the development of nearby properties, and this developer's willingness to use a moderate density with many amenities.
Issues Addressed
The primary issues addressed will involve the creation of attractive structures that blend with their beautiful site within the constraints of a reasonably high profit motive and


economic construction, but realizing that architects like John Portman have proven that exciting design can produce higher profits, and Charles Moore has shown how cheap construction does not necessarily mean dull design. Energy conservation will be important for this site with extremely cold winters but bountiful sunshine. The developer has decided to build only with passive solar design. A large determinant of function and form has been research into what has proven successful in similar developments and a market analysis on what kind this project should be. I have done a great deal of research this last year on the highly desirable aesthetic and economic advantages in the use of water in architecture.
Since a 6' wide canal runs through the front of the site, I am very excited about incorporating my knowledge' and this water in this project. Conforming to the land with a minimum disruption to the ecological balance will be an important constraint. The history of the site has been addressed. Although there is not a lot of recorded history here, except for Henry Gillespie, the founder of Aspen, who owned the site as part of his ranch, the project should become an integral part, by form and character, of the entire area. A large issue will be working within the constraints established by the Eagle County Board of Commissioners, with particular attention required for water rights and a sewer system, as well as following the Uniform Building Code. But the largest issue is to satisfy


/ \
all these physical constraints and then make a functional organization and building design that will be attractive to the community, tenants, and customers, and bring a nice profit as well.
Goals and Objectives
The primary goal of the developer is of course to make a good profit from this project. But he is also very concerned with broadening his reputation of providing quality construction with a reasonable density, energy conservation, and aesthetic appeal. To this end he has consistently hired excellent architects for his projects.
He supports the efforts that have already been made in El Jebel to make it a most livable place and is also committed to making this project an integral part of this growing community, preserving and blending into the beautiful, natural site as much as possible. Although he will be requesting a P.U.D., he will actually propose a lower density than that allowed by Commercial Limited zoning, which appears to be appropriate for this site. He wants the P.U.D. primarily for greater flexibility in setbacks and building heights for part of the structure in order to achieve the attractive design necessary to make a profit from this difficult development, where a normally higher density and profit are restricted by present and planned commercial competition as well as a steep, rocky site. He is willing to increase the aesthetic amenities of the site by adding landscaping and berms, enlarging the water canal, and burying all utilities. He will also dedicate three large


areas of the site for public use as (1) a park, (2) a greenbelt and park, and (3) new frontage road and bus terminal with perhaps a playground. In general, he accepts his responsibility as a developer to go beyond the profit incentive to create a pleasant living environment that will have a reasonably low traffic increase and a low visibility.
While respecting the history of the surrounding buildings and area is important, most of the nearby existing buildings in this semi-rural area are mobile homes. For this reason and because projected growth for this area is so large, this project should probably be regarded as a precedent-setter for what will soon be a very large new community. What goes in now will have an impact on a great deal of new construction and should therefore be as appealing as possible.
Scope and Limits
The residential/commercial property, which will be my thesis project, has a probable maximum footprint of 30,000 sq. ft. with a probable maximum of three stories, (some two) with retail on the first floor and residential and perhaps office space above. The total area for the residential over commercial will be about 60,000 sq. ft. with 30 residential units (two and three-bedroom) in about 30,000 sq. ft. above a flexible number of commercial units in about 30,000 sq. ft.
It will be built in two phases. Phase 1 will consist of fifteen units of residential over low-traffic, tradesman-type
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A
commercial. Phase 2 will double the square footage and change the character to a more specialty-type shopping center, responding to anticipated growth and changes in the area. Although the developer plans to proceed immediately with the four-plex residential on the hill of the north part of the site and hold the residential/commercial land as an investment for awhile,
I will be compressing time somewhat and will design both phases.
The residential on the hill will consist of ten four-plexes and one duplex, with a maximum total footprint of 143,520 sq. ft. or 179,400 sq. ft. and a maximum of two and one-half stories. I have done some research on the residential as well as the residential/commercial but will now concentrate on the commercial/residential while working with the architect to some extent on the residential, and providing a strong relationship to it in my final presentation.
Personal Goals
My personal goals are very much allied with the project goals as I am determined to become a developer as well as designer as soon as possible. The most exciting part of this project is having the opportunity to be working on and learning about the essential aspects of this type of career with a developer and architect who are both very knowledgeable, successful, and sensitive to some of my highest values: good design, community esteem, satisfied clients and customers, energy and ecological awareness, and handsome profits. I have
6


been evolving a personal design philosophy (with help from such innovators as Portman and Moore) that the former values are not necessarily mutually exclusive with the last and I am extremely excited about putting these new theories to a very real test.
I have recently done a lot of research on the qualities inherent in successful shopping centers, and have been surprised at how much these mesh with the attributes of medieval streets, a wonderful old European urban form, especially when they incorporate residential over commercial. This residential/ commercial building type has recently become increasingly popular and profitable, and I am eager to see if it could work somewhat like a medieval street in this presently very non-urban setting. This could be one of the most difficult parts of this project, but the program seems to allow for it and the rewards would be substantial.
It seems to me that there are three important ingredients that one should see, but very seldom does, and never all together in a speculative development: exciting design (but still within the constraints of marketability), passive solar, and the use of water (streams, waterfalls, oonds, lakes) where appropriate. My theory is that by incorporating all three, and any other high-return amenities I may discover, none of which are necessarily very expensive when considered from the beginning and done wisely, my developments will sell a lot faster, for more money, and will please the owners and users a lot


--------------------------------------------------------------------------
more than most I have seen. This thesis project appears to give me the chance to put all three into a very real context the challenge being that if I do it right, it will actually get built.
I have been doing a lot of research in my Design 700 studio on the oil shale development of the Western Slope, working with an Urban Planning studio that has the regional planning of these new boom towns as their semester project. I am rapidly coming to the conclusion that this area (within an hour's drive of El Jebel) will probably see one of the most astonishing booms in our history a good place for a burgeoning architect/developer to become knowledgeable about and find work. Thus a goal from the beginning of this project has been to try to make contacts in the area and make the end result more real than ever.
Approach Proposed
Obviously I am thrilled about doing a real project that could satisfy so many of my career objectives, and I will thus be approaching it as realistically as possible. However, the first thing I am learning is that these developments take a long time and are prone to many pitfalls and unpredictable changes. Therefore, I have been forced to make some educated guesses about the outcome of some of these variables (such as the zoning ruling) and base the rest of my design on them.
Another drawback of any speculative development, and


this one in particular, with so little existing in the area but with such a large projected growth, is the lack of many sources of hard programming information, especially for commercial. But I have been assured that this is fairly normal and must be dealt with as knowledgeably as possible through some kind of market research and educated guesswork. Because of oil shale, most experts believe that many current growth forecasts are extremely low and unusable. But it seems fairly safe to assume that El Jebel is far enough away that it will receive secondary impact from oil and the present population base of Aspen service workers will remain approximately the same for at least awhile. I have interviewed several area businessmen, planners, and other developers, and with this developer's feel for the area, have made a judgment on what commercial spaces will be most appropriate for the near future. This has led to the phasing procedure. I also plan to design in a certain flexibility for such unforeseeable changes.
Solution
The end result will be a full set of design drawings: plans, sections, elevations, relevant details, systems diagrams, and model of the residential/commercial building with particular emphasis on the site plan showing the use of water and the relationship to the residential, to the north.
Advisory Board, Roles
Paul Heath, Instructor of Architecture, U.C.D., my Thesis Prep, advisor.
Fall: Programming
Spring: Design
o


Gary Crowell, Instructor of Architecture, U.C.D. Design
Steve Onstad, Aspen developer and builder.
Market analysis, construction, developing, design
Richard Dart, Glenwood Springs architect.
Site planning and design


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EL JEBEL AND SURROUNDING AREA
(From B.B.C.'s and
"Market Analysis, El Jebel, Colorado the Roaring Fork Valley")
A
El Jebel is located in the southwest corner of Eagle County, Colorado, in the valley formed by the Roaring Fork and Frying Pan Rivers. It is a trailer park community four miles "down valley" from Basalt (Figure 1). This part of Eagle County is separated from the county seat and the Eagle Valley by a ridge of mountains. In terms of geography, trade, and other factors, it is more closely related to the two adjoining counties, Garfield and Pitkin, than Eagle County.
Glenwood Springs, the county seat of Garfield County, is in the easternmost county Census division which bears the same name. This established community adjacent to Interstate 70 has long been the trade center for a radius of more than 50 miles including the Roaring Fork Valley. Growth in this end of Garfield County has occurred at an increasing rate, particularly in the Carbon-dale area. The latter community is located close to coal mining operations near Redstone and at North Thompson Creek and these centers of employment, together with the resultant service and support jobs, provide a strong basis for continuing economic growth. Rates of population increase have been predicted in the range from 10 to 15 percent per year.
Pitkin County is governed from the Town of Aspen. This noted resort community is populated in part by highly educated and articulate citizens who have retreated to the area in search of a small town environment. The "no growth" policies of the community and the county appear to have been effective in restraining economic growth to a recent annual rate of approximately three percent. Although there appears to be some dissatisfaction with existing policies and local government, particularly by the more senior married households, it is expected that restraints on economic development will continue. As a consequence, growth "down valley" will be stimulated by the pressures from within Aspen and Pitkin Counties.
There is a major limitation on the locations for economic growth. The mountainous terrain inhibits development except on the valley floor and much of the land above the narrow valleys is in National Forests where private land ownership and development is excluded (see Figure 1).
Eagle County is changing from a largely agrarian economy into a county in which residential and recreational development have become factors in the local economy and political scene. The county is responding to the new federal and state laws (such as Colorado Senate Bill 35 which establishes land use restrictions) and county development is now influenced by specific Planning Area Citizens' Teams (PACT's). Growth in the county is considered inevitable and plans to acconrnodate a larger population are in evidence. In the Basalt planning area, the preliminary master plan shows a capacity for a population of 20,000 by 1995 in an area estimated to house 1,100 at the present time.*
*The Town of Basalt, Colorado. The Basalt Development Project-Interview Plan, June 30, 1975, pp. 21, 16. A more probable population figure provided by the plan's author, Stephen Isom, is 5,000.
CW
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Site from Highway 82


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SITE DESCRIPTION
This 3.4 acre site, including a 1.3 acre greenbelt, is part of a 13-acre parcel owned by a partnership (Maslon, et al.) of which Steve Onstadt is the coordinator and developer.
(See pages 20-29 ). It lies directly north of Highway 82, the main road to Aspen, 20 miles southeast. Carbondale is seven miles west and Basalt is three miles east. It is 320 feet east of El Jebel Road and abuts the residential/commercial property between, owned by Floyd Crawford. His "Cedar Inn" sign is almost on the property line. The neighboring owners, clockwise from Crawford (see page 27 ), are Worber Anthes,
Larry Banks, N.E.: Gene Grange, Lila Ford (Joe Hurst) East.
The property across the highway to the south is currently being purchased from the Onstadt partnership by Don Piper and Pat Hubner for a large shopping center, hotel and residential. Next to them, on the southwest, is the restaurant owned by Dan Wiegner.
The site has an untouched, natural attractiveness and has several advantages for development. It faces Highway 82, which runs northwest to southeast, but it should not be a problem to situate the buildings for maximum solar gain.
After about 120 feet of fairly level ground it begins a slooe that in some places gets over 40. But most of the residential/ commercial for this 3.5 acre project has mostly flat land, and the slope to the north should be about right to distribute sunshine effectively and provide the irregular massing the

13



developer requires. The greenbelt area fronting Highway 82 supports a large grove of mostly willows or narrow leaf cottonwood trees up to 25 feet tall and should help buffer the frequent northerly winds, provide summer shade with winter sun, and will help the developer to achieve a partly low visibility.
The rest of the flat area has natural grasses with an occasional pinion pine. The slope behind is about one-third covered with these pinion pines about 15 feet high with the balance in sage, grass and large boulders. An irrigation canal flows through the front of the property from east to west about 30 feet from the highway and branches into smaller channels going directly in front of the commercial property to the west and under the highway to the front of "Wiegners" restaurant to the south. The owners have excellent water rights on this canal, which is ripe for aesthetic exploitation.
However, the site has some problems. The primary one is access, the key to any commercial success. Highway 82 will be widened from two-lane to four-lane in the near future and the Eagle planners would much prefer any access from the higher traffic road to this site by way of a new frontage road meeting the El Jebel Road intersection to the west in front and/or behind Crawford's commercial. They would also like to have this road connect with the Willets Road intersection to the east, through the property of. either Joe Hurst or Gene Grange. The developer is currently negotiating with these three people for
14


this easement. He is also considering putting a bus stop on this road at the east end of the site for the new residents.
This Aspen bus would probably follow this frontage road to the present E. J. terminal. Even though this situation is still unresolved, I will plan for a frontage road across the Hurst or Crawford properties as well as a bus stop with an enclosure.
Another problem is the extremely rocky soil, which is fine for building foundations but is extremely difficult and expensive to cut into. Although it might be advantageous for energy conservation and aesthetics to bury the backs of buildings into the hillside, these must be sited carefully to avoid excess cutting. Putting utilities underground could be very expensive.
The steep slopes to the north will be more of a problem for the architect of the townhouses than for me, but relating the residential/commercial to these four-plexes will add some difficulty. The slopes, which are occasionally above 40% and therefore undevelopable, along with the soil, have decreased the density and profit of the upper 8.4 acres. Roads from below must be carefully planned, especially with the developer's desire to minimumly disrupt the landscape.
So there is a considerable conflict here:
1. The site has a rugged, natural appeal to it that the developer wants to preserve. Its very ruggedness will fight development.
15


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2. The developer has to achieve a certain density to make a reasonable profit, and much new
access is required.
The following three pages show buildings that surround this site.
See Pages 20-29 for maps of site.
1. Denver Grand Junction
2. Glenwood Springs Aspen
3. Telephone Exchange Areas and School Districts
4. Aerial Survey with Contours
5. Richard Dart's Boundary Map
6. Richard Dart's Preliminary Grading Plan
7. Legal Boundary Survey
8. Adjacent Property Owners From Assessor's Office
9. Preliminary Grading Plan Roads
10. Preliminary Site Plan Building Location
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"Wiegners" Restaurant behind a Branch of
"Robinson Ditch"
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P.O. and Commercial on El Jebel Road Residential Over Commercial Behind
Gas Station on Corner of Highway 82 and El Jebel Road
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4. Aerial Survey


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Richard Dart's Preliminary Grading Plan


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HISTORY
There isn't a lot of recorded history on this site or on the town of El Jebel, for it wasn't even a town until 1963. The present owner of most of El Jebel, Floyd Crawford, purchased the El Jebel Ranch in 1961 and continued ranching and farming operations until his land was chosen by the federal government as the main housing site for workers on the Ruedi Dam project, largely because of its great number of sunny days. A mobile home community grew very quickly between 1963 and 1965, but unlike most boom towns of this type it maintained a fairly low density and blended into its beautiful site surprisingly well.
Mr. Crawford accommodated the needs of the new town by harnessing El Jebel spring directly behind his house and enlarging the water reservoir, a natural lake called "the hole in the ground" about a mile above, greatly expanding the sewage treatment system (and using treated wastes in his hay fields that increased production four times), overcoming great obstacles to install a telephone system, and organizing a volunteer fire department and search and rescue team. As a result of these efforts, his desire to try to keep the town in harmony with its site, and his personal concern for the residents, Floyd Crawford has become somewhat of a father figure for this community.
Along with the residential, a small commercial area grew
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along Highway 82 and, mostly, the intersecting main street,
El Jebel Road, including a post office, grocery store, gas station, laundromat, and other shops that have grown to about twenty. Mr. Crawford has retained ownership of most of the land, renting out the residential sites and commercial spaces as well as continuing extensive ranching.
"Sopris Village," a middle-income subdivision of 107 single-family homes, was built during the last ten years on separately owned land across Highway 82 to the south. Directly abutting the highway's southern edge, Dan Wiegner recently built "Wiegners," an excellent restaurant that has become very successful. Along El Jebel Road are a few wood frame houses, one that was an elementary school from 1900 to 1945, and some early settlers' buildings, including Crawford's fine old home at the north end of the community that is the original El Jebel Ranch house.
Several Indian tribes, especially the Utes, might have lived on this site. A large number of arrowheads have been found in the area, which was a part of the Ute, White River, and Uncompahgre Indian reservation from 1863 to 1881, when they were forced to move following the Meeker Massacre of 1879.'*' But the real history of the area centers on this ranch house and the man who built it in 1892, Henry Bramblet Gillespie, the founder
'*'Len Shoemaker, Roaring Fork Valley, An Illustrated Chronicle, Denver: Sundance, Ltd., 19 73, p. T2~.


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of Aspen and owner of many of its richest silver mines.
HON H. B GILLESPIE.
FOUNDER OF ASPFN AND EX-PRIST. MOLUI GIBSON AND PERCY CONSOLIDATED MINES
Henry Gillespie was born in 1849 in Missouri, coming to Colorado in 1864 and working mostly in mining in Boulder, Denver and Leadville. He married Melissa Robinson in 187L After making and losing a lot of money, he finally began to amass real wealth when he acquired half interest in two of Aspen's first silver mines, the "Spar" and "Galena" on Aspen Mountain in 1879, and with his wife was one of the thirteen original settlers to stay that winter to protect their claims. He built Aspen's first permanent home, but that first winter it was a $60 24' x 36'
"big tent" that quickly became a "cradle of society" hosting a
32


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Sunday school, literary society and glee club around Mrs.
Gillespie's organ (or piano). It seems architect Eero Saarinen
made reference to this in 1949 when he designed the first
brightly-colored tent for the Music Festival at the Aspen
Institute, the modern cradle of Aspen culture.
Gillespie formed the small community into a town, naming
it Ute City, after making a rough survey. But while he was
away in Washington to petition for a post office, B. Clark
Wheeler ebulliently discovered the town, "jumped" it with his
own survey and renamed it Aspen. But Gillespie, "at all times 2
progressive," compromised with his rival and worked hard for the success of the new town and proceeded to make a fortune for himself. In 1883 he attracted Jerome Wheeler, a New York financier, to the area, bringing with him the eastern capital that spurred the population from 200 in 1882 to 6,000, even before the Colorado Midland and Denver and Rio Grande Railroads arrived in 1887 on parallel tracks (see railroad map). Despite one setback when David H. Moffat saved him from bankruptcy with a $60,000 personal loan, Gillespie's fortunes steadily increased.
It is said that there is not a paying mine on Aspen Mountain that the Hon. H. B. Gillespie has not at one time or another been connected with; and it is a further fact this gentleman has discovered all the big bonanzas in the camp.
2
Robert L. Harper, Colorado Mines, Denver: Carson, Hurst, and Harper, 1891, p. 47.
^Ibid.
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In addition to his remarkable mining activities, he brought the telegraph into Aspen, ran, but lost, as a Democrat for Lt. Governor in 1886, organized and was the first Grand Potentate of Denver's Shriner Masonic Temple in 1888, was one of the founders of the Colorado Mining Stock Exchange in 1891 and was appointed World's Fair Commissioner for the Chicago World's Fair of 1892 and 1893. A trade paper, "The Mining Industry" estimated in 1888 that:
. He has a monthly income from his Aspen mines alone of $75,000, aside from his real estate and coal investments, and that his .total investments in the county have exceeded $1,500,000.
But his greatest success was acquiring control in 1888 of the famous "Molly Gibson" mine on Smuggler Mountain, Aspen, the richest silver mine in Colorado, where stock went from 30C to $7.00 a share in three years.
By 1892, the rich mine paid as much as $200,000 in a single cash dividend, and Gillespie looked about for ways and means of investing his share of the profits.
One of his purchases was a large ranch, located on the Colorado Midland main line four miles down the Roaring Fork Valley from Basalt. Gillespie then built a large and comfortable home on the ranch, made other improvements, and called his property "El Jebel."
This report further states that the Colorado Midland Railroad
had previously put an eleven-car siding there called "Sherman,"
and "soon" after Gillespie's arrival renamed it "El Jebel,"
flattering "one of its biggest shippers by using the name of
his country estate."^
4"The Mining Industry," Vol. 3, No. 23, 1888, p. 223.
5
Morris Cafky, Colorado Midland, Denver: World 1965, p. 323.


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It is interesting to speculate about how "soon" this name was changed. The "Aspen Times" dated September 5, 1891 states: "H. B. Gillespie began work on his six thousand dollar6
residence at the ranch down the valley."^ And by November 4,
1893 the Sherman Purchasing Act was repealed that created a nationwide panic, immobilized silver mining and wiped out the fortunes of the wealthy and the prosperity of this area especially. Was this "Sherman" name change a portent or perhaps more political than just flattery? Gillespie had, however, owned parts of the ranch before expanding and building his mansion.
Len Shoemaker, to make matters more confusing, gives a somewhat conflicting account, saying that "the Colorado Midland put in a spur or siding" after Gillespie named the ranch El Jebel, and:
The locality was usually referred to as "Robinson's" as the Robinson family (related to Gillespie's wife,
Melissa Robinson) took over the management of the ranch.
Late in 1890 they obtained a post office ^hich was called Sherman, but further details are lacking.
Charlie Harris was the first white man to settle in the
El Jebel area, arriving in the late 1870s. E. W. Robinson
(father of Melissa) "came to Colorado in 1885 and settled on
g
the land later to become the El Jebel Ranch."
6Rocky Mountain News, April 21, 1903, p. 1 states that he spent "in all about $60,000."
^Aspen Times, September 5, 1891.
g
Shoemaker, p. 130.
9
Clarence L. Danielson and Ralph W. Danielson Colorado Midland Town, Boulder: Pruett Press, Inc.
p. 317.
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35


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Lee Willits, also related to the Robinsons, had originally homesteaded part of this land in 1887.
Soon after he proved up (usually five years) he sold it to his brother-in-law, Henry B. Gillespie, the famous mining tycoon of Aspen, who also purchased several adjoining farms to assemble his country estate known as El Jebel .... Lee then stayed on as manager of El Jebel for about five years, before buying the land from Harvey Dalton that now belongj^to Bramblet and Dorothy Willits and where they live.
Their son, Lee, lives in the original homesteaded house on Willits Road next to the Sopris Village subdivision.
Henry Gillespie named his ranch El Jebel after the El
Jebel Masonic Temple in Denver he founded in 1888. The name means "in Arabic, The Temple of the Mountains."^"'*'
Gillespie chose the name because he was "very much interested
12
in the higher degrees of masonry."
^Danielson, p. 315.
''*'The Rocky Mountain News, October 12, 1929. 12
Danielson, p. 315.
36


Being a 32nd Degree Mason himself, he might have incorporated the number seven in his cattle brand because of the hidden mysteries the Masons felt it possessed. Could the "JL" refer to having bought out property from Jake Lucksinger, one of the first settlers in the Basalt area, or does JL phoenetically state the ranch initials backwards?
But regardless of any mysticism behind it, the El Jebel Ranch was a very deluxe place:
Twenty-two miles below Aspen, on the Roaring Fork, in Eagle County, Mr. H. B. Gillespie has one of the finest ranches in Colorado, comprising 1280 acres of the best land in the valley, upon the improvement of which he has expended, according to his own statement, $185,000. The results are seen in a beautiful summer residence, superbly furnished and supplied with water and electric lights from independent power plants, and capacious enough to accommodate scores of guests. This lovely home is surrounded by green lawns, adorned with shrubbery and flowers, supplemented by greenhouses, where a great variety of plants are propagated.
At convenient distances are immense barns, stables, and corrals for the accommodation of large herds of blooded horses and cattle, and at other parts are fruit orchards in bearing, embracing apple, pear, apricot, and plum trees. There are gardens devoted to small fruits and vegetables. Upon hundreds of acres of well watered meadow lands vast crops of hay are harvested. From the porches of his mansion delightful views of neighboring ranges^including Maroon, Castle and Sopris Peaks, are obtained.
Jake Lucksinger and sons
JL
J L
E
J /. W JL L*i *
13
Frank Hall, History of the State of Colorado Chicago: The Blakly Printing Co., 1895.
o


A
The Danielsons add that:
The house still stands and is now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Crawford, who are much interested in the history of its gardens and other glories. The fine woodwork of the interior remains, as well as the stone fountain in the bay window off the dining room, scene of so many brilliant gatherings of prominent in the great days of the mining camps. The large, beautiful pavilion nearby which was used for recreation, parties and dancing, still has the original piano. -*-4
Unfortunately, Gillespie did not own El Jebel very long for he was one of the many silver magnates who lost everything in the crash of 1893. But some of that rebounding fiber was still there. He moved to Denver and tried to make another comeback in mining. Representing gold interests in Routt County, he traveled to England in 1896 to raise money, but without success. He was also unsuccessful in initiating another
Aspen venture in the winter of 1901. In December of 1902 he went to Paramaraibo, Dutch Guiana, on yet another mining enterprise where he contracted malaria and died March 22, 1903. Although he might have done it again, for shortly before his death, "it seems he stood in a fair way to realize an immense
fortune . . . But he was "buried in New York after being
16
brought back from Paramaraibo, a debt-ridden failure."
14
Danielson, p. 316.
15
Rocky Mountain News, April 21, 1903, p. 9.
16
Caroline Bancroft, Famous Aspen, Aspen: The Aspen Times, 1951, p. 21.


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The ranch was sold soon after the silver crash, but continued under a succession of owners as a fanning and ranching operation. Despite the fact that "freight originating here (El Jebel) in 1905 included twenty-three cars of livestock, thirty-four cars of hay or grain, thirty cars of pota-
17
toes and twenty-one cars of sugar beets" the Colorado Midland closed its tracks in 1918. But, like the whole valley, it remained extremely productive, with potatoes being the main cash crop until they were supplanted by hay and cattle by the mid-1950s.
Water was so abundant that it scarcely needs mentioning. Its availability for irrigation is, of course, responsible for the enormous cro^s that are produced on the lands within the valley."
The Ruedi Project was stopped in the late 1960s, but as these
workers left, Aspen was enjoying its second boom, skiing and
tourism, and was beginning to price housing out of the range
of many of its workers. El Jebel soon became primarily an
Aspen service worker community and has remained so to the
present, with the Highway 82 artery which follows some of the
old railroad and stage coach roads to Aspen (see railroad map)
now jammed with commuter and tourist traffic more than it ever
was with mining and freight.
^7Cafky, p. 323.
18
Shoemaker, p. 58.


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POSSIBLE HISTORICAL RELATIONSHIPS TO THE PRESENT Water Rights
The developer's continuing troubles to obtain domestic water, despite owning a large share of the irrigation canal (Robinson Ditch), have several historical precedents. Fights (legal and physical) have erupted over water rights in this valley from the beginning. A later owner of El Jebel Ranch shot and killed a water interloper living on the edge of "the hole in the ground." Crawford himself was threatened by a gun-wielder in a fairly recent water dispute.
Other Water Uses


Building Forms
1. Consider referring to some of the qualities of the beautiful Victorian wood frame Gillespie home.
2. The many sod-roofed potato cellars (often dug into hillsides) in the area as well as behind the Gillespie house, show an early acceptance of energyconscious design. (See p. 43.)
3. The Gillespie house had several greenhouses, including a large pavilion which used rock walls for mass storage as well as glass for collection. There is
a beautiful, large greenhouse on the old Jacobs home near the highway. (See p. 43.)
Possible Marketing Connections
1. The mountain directly behind the site is called "Gold Nugget" from the story of an unscrupulous prospector who salted a mine there with gold from a shotgun and sold it for a huge profit. Possibly a detrimental connotation.
2. Gillespie started a precedent, revived especially
in the last few years, of moving down the valley from Aspen. "You too can live on the ranch the founder of Aspen preferred to Aspen itself."


HZ


GLE.ii uwOD SPRINGS
>Y,r Barlow Stage Station & P.O. \1
rdiff it ''
Sunlight
ROUTES OF cOLOkMDu MIDLAND AND DENVER & RIO GRANDE RAILROADS IN BASALT AREA*-
COLORADO MIDLAND RAILROAD-----------
DENVER & RIO GRANDE RAILROAD wtiitmi ti i, m++h-ROADS & STAGE ROADS
The Colorado Midland crossed the Denver A Rio Grande and ilie Roaring Tork River with llie same bridge.
Satank Bridge
Catherine Wheel
r
Marion Spring Gulch
J -*
Bryant
.... f'CARBONDALE
Toll Road to Jerome Park (began at Emma)
ler
Harris Spur
. El Jebel
Basalt Mountain
\ l / j 1 -V
/C j £
'/ 1 £) C { 1 / N je /C fi 1 ^ r
tf Js f /§
BASALT ^ j )s I ( 0
Hopkins
X j
Emma"'
Castles Peach Blow

Ruedi

No. 2 Bridge
Snowmas
Rose Spur

c '
\ \ /


S / '
Mount Sopris
Ten-mile Stage Station
V
.Woody Creek Bridge
it
h'.
? N
Rathbone
Redstone
^ From Danielson, Basalt:
Colorado Midland Town
, Creek
Slaughtcrhou
Hunter
ci
ASPEN
&
h\


r
\
History Bibliography
Books
Bancroft, Caroline. Famous Aspen. Aspen: The Aspen Times, 1951.
Cafky, Morris. Colorado Midland. Denver: World Press, 1965.
Canfield, John G. Mines and Mining Men of Colorado. Denver:
J. G. Canfield, 1893.
Danielson, Clarence L. and Ralph W. Danielson. Basalt: Colorado Midland Town. Boulder: Pruett Press, Inc., 1965.
Gannett, Henry. Gazetteer of Colorado. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1906.
Hall, Frank. History of the State of Colorado. Chicago: The Blakly Printing Co., 1895.
Harper, Robert L. Colorado Mines. Denver: Carson, Hurst, and Harper, 1891.
Shoemaker, Len. Pioneers of the Roaring Fork. Denver: Sage Books, 1965.
Shoemaker, Len. Roaring Fork Valley. Denver: Sage Books, 1958.
Shoemaker, Len. Roaring Fork Valley, An Illustrated Chronicle. Denver: Sundance, Ltd., 1973.
Wentworth, Frank L. Aspen on the Roaring Fork. Denver: World Press, 1950.
Periodicals
"The Aspen Times," September 5, 1891.
"The Aspen Times," November 4, 1893.
"The Denver Field and Farm," #904, April 25, 1903, p. 5.
"The Denver Times," April 21, 1903, p. 7.
Ferril, W. C., Scrapbook (Denver Public Library Western History Collection) Vol. 2, pp. 26-28: clipping from "Kansas City Journal," September 28(?), 1889.
V.
45


r
"The Mining Industry," (Denver, Colorado), Vol. 3 / No . 23
"The Rocky Mountain News," January 24, 1874, P- 4, c. 2.
"The Rocky Mountain News," October 29, 1881, P- 4, c. 5.
" The Rocky Mountain News," December 3, 1885, P- 2, c. 2.
"The Rocky Mountain News," October 13, 1886, P- 5, c. 3.
"The Rocky Mountain News," April 21, 1903, p. 1, 9.
"The Rocky Mountain News," October 12, 1929.
Interviews
Floyd Crawford, Gene Grange, Joe Hurst, Lee WilletsEl Jebel Landowners.
Susan Vaughn, Eagle County Planner.
O
V
46


mflRKCT
Market studies are the most subjective part of any development research. The most insistent warnings against relying on them too heavily come from those who make them, the planners and market analysts themselves. Even they say,
"Give me a set of numbers and I can prove anything you want with them," or "You can even fool yourself with a market study." The consistent refrain is that a market study merely helps to reduce the risk and makes the final subjective judgment a little more knowledgeable. And it always comes down to a developer's "feel" for the area, which becomes the largest factor in his decision on what kind of buildings will do best in the market.
A number of factors make projections for the future growth of El Jebel difficult to make:
1. It is located in the southwest corner of Eagle County but is affected almost entirely by growth patterns of the neighboring counties of Garfield and Pitkin. And data is usually compiled on a county level. Extremely important information on the Colorado
West Area Council of Governments, Region XI, oil shale boom stops at its boundary three miles west of El Jebel.
47


r

j
2. The region has experienced a tremendous boom in recent years and growth will probably continue to be volatile and unpredictable. Carbondale, seven
/
miles west, is one of the fastest growing towns in the United States, increasing 188 percent in the last ten years. Basalt, three miles east, is expected to triple in population in the next year.
3. Predictions by area professionals are very conflicting.
4. The Western Slope oil shale development, which could produce one of the largest booms in U.S. history, will soon be bursting forth only about an hour's drive to the west. There will surely be at least
a secondary impact from this.
5. Local politics are a key ingredient. The influence on future growth by Floyd Crawford, owner
of most of El Jebel, will be an important factor.
Aside from the whole region's explosive nature making any predictions difficult, the biggest analytical hazards are the biases, obvious and hidden, that almost all experts possess no matter how disinterested they may try to be. Architects, builders and real estate brokers rely on development for a living and need a certain consistent optimism to overcome their many daily obstacles. Bankers are forced by the nature of their work to be more conservative.
Perhaps the least biased would be marketing consultants
V
48


and planners. The highly respected Denver demographic research firm of Bickert, Browne, Coddington and Assocs. (the B.B.C., now Browne, Bortz, Coddington & Assocs.) made a very optimistic market study for the commercial land directly across Highway 82 from this site. The report states: "A small shopping center, anchored by a supermarket or a discount department store, or both, would find sufficient demand at the El Jebel site."
(See "Summary," pages B.B.C. iv-vi.)
Two developers, who are interested in this property, say they are using this study. But it is now four years old, and Ted Browne of the B.B.C. thinks it is probably unreliable, that incomes have risen sharply but competition is much stronger. Despite the fact these firms have reputations to uphold, they must still find it difficult not to give their clients what they want to hear. And they are in the business of selling further studies. So there is a considerable range of opinion from which to try to make a reasonable judgment. At the optimistic extreme are the people in the building industry who deal mostly in future profits. One of these says, "El Jebel will grow like Los Angeles." Following not too far behind are the consultants and planners they hire. Somewhere in the middle are some real estate brokers who have recently seen several units in booming, housing-short Carbondale lie vacant for long periods. And at the most cautious end are the bankers who must think in terms of present trends and money. Dennis
49


SUMMARY
This report represents an analysis of the retail demand available to a supermarket or a discount department store at a commercial site near El Jebel, Colorado. This small mobile home community is located in the Roaring Fork Valley between Aspen and Glenwood Springs as indicated in Figure 1.
The site is on level ground adjacent to State Highway 82. The site is zoned for commercial and retail activity consistent with the Eagle County Master Plan. It is accessible and visible from this major thoroughfare. Highway improvements are expected to follow the present right-of-way and provide good access to the property.
The primary trade area includes the neighboring towns of Basalt and Carbondale. Parts of three counties are included. Population and income estimates for 1977, the first year of operation, are:
Part of Mean County Household Included Households Income
Eagle 1,320 $14,400 Garfield 1,700 15,300 Pitkin 1,260 18,000
Total 4,280
Total primary trade area resident retail demand is the product of these figures with 54 percent expended at retail. This demand is allocated among retail sales categories:
Amount
Proportion______(millions)
Convenience goods 322 $11.7
Primary shoppers goods 28 10.2
Secondary shoppers goods 18 6.6
General purchases* 22 8.1
1002 $36.6
General purchases, such as automobiles, are not under consideration at the site and net demand for this type of goods is excluded from evaluation.
B.B.C. jy
50


FIGURE I. LOCATION MAP
B.B.C. v
51


Table 1 provides a summary of available retail demand at El Jebel, considering existing competition (supply) and the contribution from the secondary trade area (Aspen) residents and visitors.
The secondary trade area has 4,120 resident households with a $40.0 million retail potential. If one percent of this trade could be attracted down-valley to El Jebel, the sales contribution at the site would be:
Retail Sales Potential
Proportion_________(millions)
Convenience goods Primary shoppers goods Secondary shoppers goods General purchases
Total
32% $0.13
28 .11
18 .07
22 .09
100% $0.40
Visitors to Aspen spend $64.4 at retail. Assuming one half of one percent of this amount was intercepted or attracted to El Jebel, the retail contribution from visitors would be entirely in convenience goods and primary shoppers goods in approximately equal proportions:
__________________________________________________(millions)
Convenience goods $0.16
Primary shoppers goods 0.16
Total $0.32
The net available demand for convenience goods would support a supermarket as large as 30,000 square feet with sales of $130 per square foot. A somewhat smaller market at the site would be a lower risk venture.
Shoppers goods demand, which is now escaping to Glenwood Springs and elsewhere, is sufficient to sustain a discount department store tailored to the needs of trade area residents. A 20,000 square foot store averaging annual sales of $50 per square foot would produce $1 million in sales, or capture 10 percent of the estimated available demand.
A small shopping center anchored by a supermarket or a discount department store, or both, would find sufficient demand at the El Jebel site.
The proposed center will be successful in attracting trade if its design is well conceived and executed.
B.B.C.
vi
52


Edson, manager of Mutual Savings and Loan in Carbondale, thinks most residents can't afford homes today and things are going to get worsealso the new shopping centers planned for Carbondale and Glenwood Springs as well as the existing City Market in Basalt will forestall commercial success in El Jebel for at least the next few years. And then there is Floyd Crawford, who is genuinely interested in improving the quality of life in his town, but might prefer to see most of these improvements made on his own property. No matter what the regional trends might be, actual local action could very well depend on his considerable influence. Eagle County officials have been very impressed with his leadership in this community and usually go along with his requests.
But despite the many variables, there are a number of consistent trends that indicate a successful future for El Jebel. To acquire an accurate feel for a specific area it is generally best to think in terms of regional influences. This would seem especially true for this isolated corner of Eagle County that is so heavily impacted by Aspen twenty miles southeast and will feel some effect from oil shale development about sixty miles northwest. It is also affected by nearby coal mining and lies near the north end of the beautiful Roaring Fork Valley, which is a strong recreational attraction in its own right.
53


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POPULATION
Present
Present population figures show substantial growth. The "Garfield County Population Report, 1980" gives the following statistics for growth in the last ten years:
1970 1980 %
Garfield County 14,821 22,483 51.7
Pitkin County (primarily Aspen) 6,185 10,446 65.3
Eagle County 7,498 12,707 69.5
Carbondale 726 2,093 188
The report further states that 51 percent of this population increase was on county land, as growth within city limits was restricted by ordinance or lack of space. It is the latter reason that accounts for the insignificant growth of Glenwood Springs, which is often mentioned as a major competitor with El Jebel. And Aspen now strictly enforces a 3.4 percent annual growth rate by limiting the number of building permits. The 1980 "Eagle County Population Report" shows El Jebel growing from 823 in 1975 to 2000 in 1980, a 143 percent increase in five years.
Future
Even without considering the oil shale impact, several reports project a high growth rate. Eagle County estimates growth from 12,707 (1980) to between 25,300 (Colorado Division of Planning) and 38,830 (E.P.A.) by 1990, and between 34,400
V.
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r
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(C.D.P.) and 56,096 (E.P.A.) by 2000. They also predict that El Jebel will increase as follows:
1985 1990 1995
3000 10%/year 4000 5200 6.6%/year 6%/year
With oil shale taken into consideration the figures become more and more staggering the closer one gets to the Piceance Creek Basin, north of Rifle and Parachute and west of Meeker, where the world's largest known reserves of oil shale are located.
The Colorado West Area Council of Governments has recently published a report that includes Exxon's latest projections.
Page 56 predicting Rifle growth, serves as an example of their astonishing predictions.
Scenario I: Normal population growth without energy development.
Scenario II: Coal and oil shale development, as currently
planned.
Scenario III: Oil shale at high level of development:
450,000 bbls/day by 1990, 640,000 bbls/day
by 2000; coal at 26 million tons/year by
1985, 34 million tons/year by 2000.
But even Exxon's projections for Carbondale (without Senario III) show a limited direct impact on the El Jebel area even though their figures are still quite a bit higher than those of Eagle County. (See page 57 .) This fairly well
Q.

55


RIFLE
1977 SPECIAL CENSUS 2244
I960 ESTIMATE FOR HOUSING UNIT JANUARY 1 COUNT 3540 1352
End of Year I II III
1980 2316 3933
1981 2341 5661
1982 2367 8492
1933 2394 12516
1984 2421 18113
1985 2448 19573 22060
1990 2585 23710 23710
1995 2723 22934
2000 2870 23687 25159
C.W.A.C.O.H. -12-
56


CARBONDALE
1977 SPECIAL CENSUS 1644
1980 ESTIMATE FOR JANUARY 1 2171
HOUSING UNIT COUNT 829
End of
Year I II
.c
1980 2171 2344
1981 2366 2614

1982 2761 3169

1983 2861 3271

1984 3061 3474 \ i
1985 3661 4076
1990 4761 5189
4?
1995 7261 7702
'ijio
2000 9986 10440


r
a
coincides with the views of most El Jebel area residents: oil shale will have some impact, but it will be secondary.
Employment
The greatest percentage of area residents are Aspen service workers. The inflated real estate values in Aspen have made it impossible for a large portion of its workers to afford housing in the city. Thus the whole valley is filling up with these workers who are forced to commute up to 45 miles each way a day. Their jobs pay more in Aspen than elsewhere but most workers are in a lower to low-middle income category.
The next largest group are the coal miners for whom Carbondale is the closest community. Although they often make above $20,000/year they tend to be somewhat transient and usually can't afford current housing anyway. Dennis Edson says he can count on one hand the miners who have received home loans.
The balance of the population comprises a fairly normal range with an emphasis on tourism, mostly Aspen skiing and valley recreation.
It is generally assumed that growth will occur within these same percentages for the foreseeable future.
Retail Sales and Resident Income
See pages 59-67 from the B.B.C. El Jebel Market Analysis.


FIGURE 4. TRADE AREAS
Ul


B.B.C. 11
SECTION III. TRADE AREA POPULATION AND INCOME
Two key retail demand indicators -are trade area population and income. These factors are summarized in this section. Present population estimates and forecasts are described in Appendix A.
Population
The number of trade area households has been derived from four sources:
Residence main telephones
School enrollment
Post Office records
Planning estimates
The following table provides a population forecast:*
Annual ______________Households
County Growth Rate 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980
Eagle 10% 1,200 1 ,320 1,450 1,600 1,750
Garfield 15% 1,500 1,700 2,000 2,300 2,600
Pitkin 5% 1,200 1,260 1,320 1 ,390 1,450
Subtotals -- 3,900 4,280 4,770 5,290 5,800
Aspen & East 3% 4,000 4,120 4,240 4,370 4,500
Totals 7,900 8,400 9,010 9,660 10,300
Trade area growth rates were estimated by various knowledgeable individuals and organizations including utility companies.
Income
Census data provide a measure of income levels in the trade area, but inmigration and inflation have changed household incomes substantially. The portions of Eagle and Garfield Counties in the trade area are not necessarily representative of the entire counties in terms of household income. In Pitkin County, the combination of short term visitors and the temporary workers who provide necessary visitor services affects household income estimates.
For these reasons, all readily available income indicators have been considered in this analysis and a separate determination of visitor retail potential has been included. Mean household income, rather than median, has been selected as the proper indicator of trade area income potential. Increases since the 1970 Census, when incomes for 1969 were recorded, reflect changes in the economy and inflation. The average adjusted gross income reported on state
*The 1976 household estimate is derived in Appendix A.
60


B.B.C . 12
Income tax returns has increased at the average annual rate through the six year period ending in 1974:
Annual Rate of Increase
Eagle County 4.8%
Garfield County 6.2
Pitkin County 2.5
Colorado 6.1
Application of these rates to mean incomes provides the following forecast:
Eagle Garfield Pitkin
Year County County County
1969* $ 9,998 $ 9,638 $14,541
1974 12,639 13,020 16,452
1975 13,246 13,827 16,863
1976 13,882 14,684 17,285
1977 14,548 15,595 17,717
1978 15,246 16,562 18,159
1979 15,978 17,589 18,614
1980 16,745 18,679 19,079
This forecast is in current dollars. It is recognized that this approach under
states the future retail trade potential for both the primary and secondary ser
vice areas. An inflation i rate of at least 5-7 percent annually is expected.
Another countywide indicator of income levels is the effective buying
income (EBI) which is personal income less taxes as identified by Sales Manage-
ment Magazine. The most recent household estimate is for 1974:
Eagle Garfield Pitkin
Year County County County
1969 $ 7,282 $ 8,544 $11,488
1974 11,292 10,345 13,428
These estimates compare with the previously developed forecast.
Local estimates in the part of each county included in the primary trade area do exist.
*Annual Report, Colorado Department of Revenue, various years. Annual rate is calculated from reported dollar values.
**U.S. Bureau of the Census, 1970 Census of Population, General Social and Economic Characteristics, Colorado, Final Report PC(1)-C7.
61


B.B.C, 13
A survey of 58 Basalt residents showed a 1974 mean family income very near $13,000.* The mean estimated earlier for Garfield County in the same year is almost the same figure.
The City of Carbondale recently conducted a survey of 520 dwellings in which 388 responses indicated 1975 median household income in the $10,000-$!5,000 range.
The mean is estimated to be $13,460.
Judging from a survey of employees in Aspen, their median household income was between $9,000 and $10,000 in 1975 with an average of $13,329.**
This survey included a high proportion of service jobs and the results are believed to understate Aspen area income for 1975. These income levels might be indicative of the income levels for these types of employees who live down valley from Aspen in the primary trade area.
Mean household income forecast. Consideration of the foregoing income data results in the following estimate of future household incomes for projection of retail demand in the trade area portions of each county:***
Year Eagle County Garfield County Pitkin County
1976 $13,880 $14,680 $17,290
1977 14,400 15,300 18,000
1978 15,000 15,900 18,700
1979 15,600 16,500 19,400
1980 16,200 17,200 20,200
Survey for An Analysis of Western Eagle County, Bickert, Browne, Coddington & Associates, January 1976.
The Aspen Employee Survey Summer 1975. Larry Simmons and Harold Stalf, September 1975, Office of the Urban Economist City of Aspen. There were 1,007 valid responses to 2,870 questionnaires.
Increase from 1976 is calculated at four percent annually and repre sents incomes in 1976 dollars excluding inflation.
62


B.B.C. -|4
SECTION IV. RETAIL DEMAND
This section identifies retail demand from local residents and visitors. Retail sales records in the trade area are reviewed.
Total Retail Demand from Local Residents
Total trade area disposable income can be identified in terms of household (or family) income and the number of households. For this reason, trade area population estimates and income levels were developed earlier. Additional trade from area visitors and passers-by is a separate consideration. Table 2 provides an estimate of total trade area income in 1977, the first full year of operation for the proposed center. Projections ignore inflation. Total retail potential is 50 percent of total income. This relationship and others necessary to subsequent analysis is developed in Appendix B.
Retail sales records. The following table permits analysis of recent retail sales in the included counties. It provides data which can be used to check Table 2.
1974 1975 Percent
(mill ions) _________Change
Eagle County Total $63.2 $75.7 20%
Town of Basalt 4.8 5.6 17
Garfield County Total 116.7 134.1 15
Town of Carbondale 4.0 5.7 43
Pitkin County Total 83.7 99.1 18
Town of Aspen 67.6 73.2 17
Town of Snowmass 1.6 2.4 50
Remainder of County 19.5 23.5 21
This record provides an indication of recent retail activity in the trade areas and shows high rates of increase at Basalt and Carbondale. As sales levels rise, the percentage increase will decline. For this reason, projection of future retail sales recognizes rapid recent growth but applies more conservative annual rates of change.
Only a part of each county is within the primary trade areas. An estimate of the portion included is shown in the following table to indicate the approximate amount of retail sales in the trade area in 1975. Conservative annual growth rates have been applied in the table to show estimated 1977
63


B.B.C. 15
TABLE 2. TOTAL TRADE AREA RESIDENT INCOME IN 1977* AND RESULTING RETAIL POTENTIAL
County Segment Households 1977 Mean Income Area Resident Income Retail Potential** (millions) (54% of income)
Eagle 1,320 $14,400 $ 19.0 $10.3
Garfield 1,700 15,300 26.0 14.0
Pitkin 1,260 18,000 22.7 12.3
Subtotal 4,280 67.7 36.6
Remainder of Pitkin County including Aspen 4,120 18,000 74.2 40.0
Total 8,400 $141.9 $76.6
Income analysis. forecast in 1976 dollars. Inflation is excluded from this
Retail potential as a percent of family income described in Appendix
B.
64


B.B.C, 16
primary trade area retail sales.
Area Portion Included in Trade Area 1975 Retail Sales (millions) Annual Rate of Growth 1977 Retail Sales (millions)
Eagle County 3% $ 2.3 10% $ 2.8
Basalt 100 5.6 15 7.4
Garfield County 4 5.4 10 6.5
Carbondale 100 5.7 15 7.5
Pitkin County
Unincorporated 50 11.7 5 12.9
Totals $30.7 $37.1
The rates of growth applied appear consistent with the earlier analysis. The result tends to confirm the primary trade area 1977 retail sales potential derived in Table 2, totaling $36.6 million from resident purchases alone.
Retail Demand by Type
Three recent breakdowns of retail sales in Colorado by type are available. They are the Sales Management analysis, the Census of Retail Trade, 1972 and the Sales Tax Reports prepared by the Colorado Department of Revenue. In addition, Progressive Grocer published the distribution of the consumer dollar in 1974. All of these sources are compared in Table 3. The Census of Retail Trade is most specific and most closely follows the trade classifications uti-1ized in this analysis. This source has been chosen to allocate primary trade area retail demand developed in Table 2.
Amount
Type of Retail_________________Proportion________(millions)
Convenience goods 32% $11.7
Primary shoppers goods 28 10.2
Secondary shoppers goods 18 6.6
General purchases 22 8.1
Total 100% $36.6
Secondary Trade Area Contribution
The secondary trade area was defined in Section II to include all of Pitkin County not already defined as part of the primary trade area. In essence, this includes the unpopulated national forest and the Town of Aspen. The total resident retail potential in the secondary trade area identified in Table 2 is $40.0 million in 1977. Only a part of this amount will be expended outside Aspen.
The earlier discussion about trade area boundaries indicated the propensity of Aspen residents to do certain of their shopping in Glenwood Springs.
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TABLE 3. RETAIL SALES DEMAND DISTRIBUTION BY TYPE
Sales Management 1972 Census of Retail Trade irk Department of Revenue 1975 Progressive Grocer 1974
Convenience goods 36.1% 31.9% 35.0% (est.) 40.4%
Primary shoppers goods 19.4 28.0 15.4 17.3
Secondary shoppers goods 15.1 17.5 14.3 12.6
General purchases 18.8 22.6 19.8 (est.) 17.3
Other 10.6 15.5 12.4
Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
*Sa1es Management, 1975 Survey of Buying Power, July 21, 1975.
**1972 Census of Retail Trade, Colorado Area Statistics, U.S. Department of Commerce, RC72-A-6. Department of Revenue, Colorado Sales Tax Statistics.
Progressive Grocer, April 1975, 42nd Annual Report Issue, page 62.
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B.B.C.
18
This trade (Including convenience goods as well as shoppers goods and general purchases) is lost from the secondary trade area.
Retail sales 1n Aspen have increased at more than 17 percent per year on the average over the last decade. At this rate, sales will be $100 million in 1977, up from $73 million in 1975. Of this $100 million, a part 1s lost to Glenwood Springs.
In the 1974-75 period, the Aspen visitor spent $94.5 million in Pitkin County.* Lodging and ski lift tickets included in this amount are not considered retail sales. However,if half these expenditures were retail sales as defined for this report, the $47.2 million increasing at 17 percent per year since 1975 would represent $64.4 million by 1977. Only a small part of this retail potential will be attracted down valley but it represents substantial buying power.
*Market and Economic Analysis of Aspen and Pitkin County, Colorado, January 1976, Sno-Engineering, Inc., page 74.
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These figures are now four years old, but this seems to be the best study on the immediate area that is available. Their analysis of present conditions, when given an inflation multiplier, might still be accuratecertainly more so than their sections on competition.
HOUSING
The majority of existing housing in the area is in two categories:
1. Very low cost (mobile homes)
$16,000 21,000 plus monthly space rental
2. Middle to upper-middleusually single-family homes (and condos) $80,000 and up, most in the higher range.
Rental units: Studio and 1-bedroom $400/month
2-3 bedroom $450/month and up (approximately)
Commercial space rents for about $7/sq. ft.
(Aspen commercial is about $25/sq. ft.)
Current Housing Trends
1. Most residents definitely prefer a private home with much open space, reflecting the semi-rural nature of the area despite much recent growth. Condominiums without much shared open space have not sold well. Given this, a mobile home on its own site might be more acceptable than an apartment type unit. Desirability of units in area in order of preference:
a. Single family
b. Townhouse
O.
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c. Condominum
d. Mobile Home
e. Rent
2. Two-bedroom and studio units sell much better than three-bedroom units. One-bedroom units are not considered much better than studios.
3. The great demand in this predominately working-class area is for low cost housingthe very type that is least available today. Homes in the $80,000 range sell fastest.
4. Consideration should be given to the problems of "The Ranch at Roaring Fork," a subdivision of condominiums and single-family homes on Highway 82 about five miles west of El Jebel. Despite the fact the project was probably premature, the units have sold poorly because of:
a. High price for relatively cheap construction.
b. Condos not private enough.
c. Mandatory high dues ($ 120-$130/month) for unwanted amenitiesgolf course, swimming pool, tennis courts.
d. Not enough paving.
e. No police.
f. Difficult financing.
Homes sold better than condos, but a survey of the twenty
homes revealed seven with "for sale" signs.


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5. Building sites in Carbondale are expensive. Comparable lots: Rifle $17,000; Glenwood Springs $20,000;
Carbondale $32,000.
Usually the closer one gets to Aspen the more expensive everything is. However, home sites in El Jebel, which currently bears some onus of being a "trailer park," are about $10,000 cheaper than Carbondale.
Housing Outlook
Although higher priced homes have sold well in "Winchester Heights" (north of this site) and "Sopris Village" (across Highway 82), the biggest demand is for low to medium priced, mostly two-bedroom units, and should continue for several years. Open space should continue to be highly desirable, but future growth will make a higher density more acceptable. Growth will also bring higher incomes and greater popularity of three-bedroom units. Given its cheaper land costs, without any difference in building costs, El Jebel would be an excellent place to meet this low-cost housing demand.
The developer is very aware of the present sociological imperative to provide worker housing for the area. Aspen has tried for several years to enforce development of service-worker housing but has largely failed. The surrounding communities must provide for this great need. Given its cheaper land costs,
El Jebel could be an ideal site for this demand.


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COMMERCIAL
It is difficult to make a comorehensive survey of El Jebel commercial property because it is owned almost entirely by Floyd Crawford, who might be a stiff competitor. The developer wants to try to fit in with Crawford's community and not duplicate or conflict with the existing commercial.
The predominant demand in this present working-class area is for tradesman type spaces, which have been very successful in the Aspen Airport commercial district, which also has residential on second floors. The best spaces for Phase 1 would probably be 1000 1200 so. ft. and flexible enough to accommodate storage, shop and small office needs of people in the building trades, i.e., carpet, tile, electricalsmall contractors. These could relate well to the moderate-nriced housing above and might be sold as a package. It might be difficult to build economically enough to profitably compete with the 7 sg. ft./year current area commercial rental rate.
It does seem certain that the predictions of the B.B.C. and some of the most optimistic developers will eventually come about, present commercial development has altered the B.B.C.'s 1976 analysis and competition is stronger. But it could encourage other commercial growth as several new planned housing developments are built as well. The demand for a specialty-type shopping center, especially right along the main highway, will almost certainly happen in the near future. Therefore, a Phase 2 should be planned to add to and incorporate the Phase 1 structure(s),
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changing their use with minimum alteration, to make the whole project a cohesive, attractive commercial and residential community, with perhaps some of the flavor of an Aspen or Boulder mall.
COST ESTIMATES
The following six pages are preliminary cost figures for two-bedroom (1000 sq. ft.), three-bedroom (1200 sq. ft.) residential, and 1200 sq. ft. commercial units. The numbers come mostly from the developer, using current average costs and interest rates, and are taking into account the desire to make moderate sales costs feasible. There are several considerations in this project that make the bottom lines difficult to analyze. Aside from the current unpredictability of material costs and interest rates, the owners are very concerned with tax advantages that could make a marginal venture more attractive.
But even so, these early figures appear to indicate that worker-units are possible, the developer would like to keep the selling prices below $90,000, ideally in the $80-85,000 range.
The two-bedroom is well below this at $76,500. The three-bedroom, at $89,000, is just within the range. Perhaps a unit profit adjustment could be made with the two-bedroom unit to bring them both closer to the current market.
The commercial units also appear to be in an acceptable
range. But the owners will probably want to rent them out, which brings up variables even more confounding than tax laws. Aside from the permanent loan rate, one must consider costs of


FRCJECT SUMMARY (2 £6 tl- f H 'r,L~
Froject Title: ___________________________________________________________
Froject Description: C. gfgg> L- £ ,
Project Location: _________________________________________________________
Zoning/Density: PO ^ ^ M (1,^^ fr&->L;rr~ 1 <
Height Restrictions: ,
'j, <
>7 £>£./£-
Project Size: ^^ / ________
Maximum Allowable Units: fry&ZcT &> C> units
Actual Project Units:
*2^
units
Parking: 2. tf
Spaces/Unit:
SF/Space:

Land Cost:
2- 4 i *7 ^ c Total SF
Ks < i
Total SF: 2,/ 4^/ ^ 1476 P J fl<>0
$ /SF: ^3-XgTl,47^ 5,p; -^153,0^ 2g$g^O/ ^ Ti'ISlITC cs t
Construction Cost (includes builder's profit) -^5"
/SF
Unit Breakdown
Type: 2- - ________
Net SF: \DOO ____________
% of Total Units: /P>C> %>
Number of Units: / B
Type: 13^1^__________
Net SF: I 'Z&Z> ^ ^
% of Total Units: A\ // Number of Units: I2~
Type: ____________
Net SF: __________
% of Total Units: Number of Units:
Type: ____________
Net SF: __________
% of Total Units: Number of Units:
73


2~
PRCJECT SUKIARY ~
Froject Title: _________________________
Project Description: "j-jb / S
Project Location: ______________________
Zoning/Density: Pl?!? f C'/U
Height Restrictions: ^ & g=
Project Size: '''JJ&t _________-aoroe-
Maxiir.um Allowable Units: A'V^-T units
Actual Project Units: ____________
units r."i~ ^ r
Parking: I .3^0 ^if
Spaces/iiwtt: - /&
SF/Space: __________________
Land Cost:
\6dh>c 2-00,00*
Construction Cost (includes builder's profit)


Total SF
/ Total Cost
-/ 4 6""_________ $/SF
Unit Breakdown
Type: I fA \J&^)____________
Net SF: I 42-&&_____________
^ of Total Units: iOO /?
Number of Units:
Type: _________
Net SF: _________
% of Total Units: Number of Units:
Type: ____________
Net SF: __________
% of Total Units: Number of Units:
Type: ____________
Net SF: __________
% of Total Units: Number of Units:
74


3
('UNT^CCST PROJECTION /2
Project Title; __________________________________________________________________
Unit Type/Size; 2> - { {C'Qd ^ P*__________________________________
Total Number of This Unit Type: 1*7* f fS>.e,£~'r 1 'tf'? /i- &£''?<> ^ k
A. Land (* /m -)3%^ X
B. Euildine Construction Cost^4^-< \C>oc>
ks/ / *->£&/''*-r -rs~~ c *ji'£ Ou/
C. Utility Hookup ^
D. Landscaping ($/unit) ^
E. Parking
TOTAL HARD COSTS
£ "Z- I (ovjl- Bi'V
#*3 e; <30- ^_________

$ £?-l3££-
F. Architecture & Engineering:
~1
r^S£_
G. Construction Interest
Amount Borrowed $ p>
Outstanding Balance C
Interest Rate _______ )JTP, /, .
Months Outstanding / C ^ gsnQ ^ ^
H. Taxes During Construction . hJtA, ; rd£>,-f ) /
_ n^?J,7£/V, 2.&m> 6*3, r lie J1L£ ? 4&.4C
Ie Carrying Cofets
oj
Amount Borrowed Interest Rate
V
Months Outstanding
&
TOTAL SOFT COSTS
^4
TOTAL HARD 4 SOFT COSTS
54- ?ce> x x ^
/ 2" it
J. Development Fee: I
K. Contingency Fee; ____
y -S*?. ^ ?T£>
i
_______^... *
TOTAL DEVELOPMENT COSTS


f/Zdif-LZiL
IP
L. Developer's Profit:
/ 5" ^ P ?/ 2T
TOTAL PRESALE COSTS
^ / 0
,45* *7-2y587/x* ~?£>4\0.
M. Sales Commission: _____2_
£
/ 3? 2^r-
TOTAL SALES COST FER UNIT
?PyPLP-
-H
/4 t C5/yt>T.
p6>/ 5W
n c


4
/JJNIT- CCST PRCJECTICN
Project Title: ____________________________________________________________
Unit Type/Size: ^ / 7-00 Ft_________________________________
Total Number of This Unit Type: ) 2- ^ ^ - C'l A l-~ 40?* ^ V
A. Land ($/unit) /"2

B. Building Construction Cost
C. Utility Hookup
D. Landscaping (3/unit)
E. Parking
TCTAL HARD CCSTS
F. Architecture & Engineering:
x l7,e>eo
Coy'*-
4> ^SODO_____
£,£>30_____
*6>l. ___
2-
fc
£ / *2.3^
G. Construction Interest >.
Amount Borrowed $ i POOL "
Outstanding Balance 37^00
Interest Rate _____
Months Outstanding
JSO

Taxes During Construction KJ.fii,
Carrying Costs A,
Amount Borrowed 3___
Interest Rate
Months Outstanding
TCTAL SOFT CCSTS
.4
& i 3 7
7,
^ TOTAL HARD & SOFT pv_ ^ CCSTS /
J . Development Fee: /C
K. Contingency Fee: rr %
TCTAL DEVELOPMENT COSTS
^ Developer's Profit: /*r %
TOTAL PRESALE CCSTS
M. Sales Commission: s' %
TCTAL SALES COST
^ . FER UNIT
t 4/3
4?, 27
*

- 3,-7^
# 73,-^3.3
i y^/3
-^4,44 3 -f g3> g 52S

76


S'
Project Title:
UNIT COST PROJECTION ^3/M tV\ y
Unit Type/Size: U>fJ> l T~ I Z~£Q 5,ff
Total Number of This Unit Type: ? **>
$1 2.o/ ooo _
A. Land ($/unit)
^5"
3. Building Construction Cost AS/
C. Utility Hookup
D. Landscaping (3/unit)
E. Parking
TOTAL HARD COSTS
^ <43oo (oujue&i

5,00(0
6>~b^c? o.
F. Architecture & Engineering:
/C
^ / 2-7<^
G. Construction Interest Amount Borrowed Outstanding Balance Interest Rate
$C?,oo ^V
<-*w' *>
Months Outstanding



Taxes During Construction /
Carrying Costs
Amount Borrowed 3___
Interest Rate
Months Outstanding
TOTAL SOFT COSTS

TOTAL HARD & SOFT COSTS
tl.l- ^ = I 2^0 2-
Development Fee: _____I, ~7
4 K.
K. Contingency Fee:
/C
ct
12.o>&
^72-
Developer's Profit:
TOTAL DEVELOPMENT COSTS
/tT

11^3.3
TOTAL FRESALE COSTS

M. Sales Commission:
*
IF HeOT'
TOTAL SALES COST
PER UNIT ^ ^ _
?C\\4C? /yvz-
£ <7

~!!y -^6 uve pTT

tSc?/ ?7<2 C*"*- u~~-)
X 'I5~
7. ^
^7"
^7 / xf/1

£sp 4*7/~
V2.
77


PRO FORMA COSTS
Project Title:
Land Acquisition
Building (Hard and Soft Costs)
Type: 2- 7E>£.P______
Pei/e£ c ot>r: I 2-1 -
-
Number of Units: 1 ^
V^=2T2
4 2-o&j

.5

CP CP
_____ > pacin'?
'//3?77
Type
~ C f L
*2?-
E*
P
£
- teryr: ^Sv'fe ales -Coot::
Number of Units:
I Z~
Type:
i/£ /- <'.*
Sales Ceotrt
pi'iegr Number of Units
I PCs!2. OO. ~t---------
2/ 3/ 2-,5^3

l/K&Soo
Type: _________
Sales Cost: ______
Number of Units:
TOTAL PROJECT COST e>F p£T^£^^t/-T-
^ i/WUscT

: '2-i.S'i 4
~~7-----7^------
-E£i 52r ^7,?75"
p^fir S"^"} 111
Forms Courtesy of James E. Wright, Marketing Consultant


utilities, insurance, management, maintenance and taxes, as well as the acceptable vacancy and profit percentages.
SUMMATION
At this point I must defer to the judgment of the developer, as I have done with the last part of this market study in general. It is, after all,the developer's seasoned "feel" for the area that makes the information relevant and the project successful. After going over all the data, he has reached the following conclusions.
He thinks the bankers' judgments are probably the most realistic for now. To get P.U.D. approval he must show present need as well as the future highest and best use of the oroperty. Although the site is close to the town center and on Highway 82 in an area of very high growth projections, there is a lot of commercial existing and planned, mostly by Floyd Crawford, who will be most influential in the process. However, housing is in undisputedlv great demand.
Therefore, he would like to build the whole project in three phases, with the 42 townhouses to the north first. The residential/commercial will be a second phase in the near future. The expanded residential/commercial would be built sometime later, when conditions are better known. My mission will be to design the last two phases, which I will refer to as Phases 1 and 2.
It will Drobablv be difficult to Drove the need for more


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than fifteen units each of residential and commercial in Phase 1. But the developer is impressed by the growth projections and will request P.U.D. approval for all phases tied to some type of required timing. He will try to accommodate the worker housing and tradesman commercial demand in this first phase, but wants the buildings flexible enough to adjust to future changes in the community. A more specialty shopping center function seems possible. Phasing and convertibility, for the site generally and the commercial especially, are key factors in meeting demand in this booming region.
For more specifics on how the buildings should meet this demand, see the "Buildings" section.
o.
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MARKET ANALYSIS REFERENCES
Reports
"Basalt South," David C. Edwards, U.C.D. Masters Thesis, 1979.
"Crystal Clear," Report on Carbondale Master Plan.
"Eagle County Master Plan," Gerald E. Brown, Planning Commission of Eagle County, 1973.
"Eagle County Population Projections," Eagle County, 1980.
"Garfield County Population Projections," Garfield County, 1980.
"Market Analysis: El Jebel, Colorado and the Roaring Fork Valley," James R. Lincoln, Jr., Denver: Bickert, Browne, Coddington and Associates (B.B.C.), 1976.
"Region XI Population Projections, Municipal and County Population Projections: 1980-2000," (based on oil shale development)
Colorado West Area Council of Governments, 1980.
"The Roaring Fork Frying Pan Study," Tom Donnelly, et. al., University of Colorado at Denver, 1979.
Interviews
Ted Browne, Browne, Bortz, Coddington and Associates (B.B.C.), Denver. Interpretation of their "El Jebel Market Analysis" and Market Study Techniques.
Floyd Crawford, owner of most of El Jebel. Past and Future Development.
Richard Dart, Architect, Glenwood Springs, with Steve Onstadt.
Site Capacity, Market, Oil Shale.
Steve Dollman, Marketing Specialist, T.H.K. Planners, Denver.
Market Study Techniques, Sources.
Dennis Edson, Manager, Mutual Savings, Carbondale. Economic Conditions, Population, Employment, Sales.
David Gibson, Architect, Aspen, with Pat Hubner and Don Piper.
Their Development Plans, Market Conditions.
Tim Griggs, Real Estate Broker, Aspen. Market, Sales, Resources.
Doug Haffnieter, Real Estate Broker, Carbondale. Market, Sales.


Interviews (Continued)
Pat Hubner, Developer, El Jebel. His Plans, Market.
Steve Onstad, Developer, Aspen. Market Study Techniques, Market, etc.
Michael Otte, Real Estate Broker, Aspen, and Developer, Rifle. Market, Oil Shale.
Don Piper, Developer, El Jebel. His Plans, Market.
Herbert Smith, Director, U.C.D. Planning Program. Market Study Procedure, Sources.
Susan Vaughn, Eagle County Planner. Survey of El Jebel, Site Capacity.
Dan Wiegner, Owner of "Wiegner's" Restaurant, El Jebel. Market, Sources.


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UJRTR
INTRODUCTION
In the past year I have researched tv;o papers on historic and modern uses of water in architecture, and have quickly concluded that there are some extraordinary opportunities available in its judicious application. Although waterscaping with streams, lakes, ponds, waterfalls and fountains has a strong, historically proven place in the landscape and with architecture, attractive applications had become less frequent in recent years. Fortunately a few innovative designers such as Charles Moore, Lawrence Halprin and Christopher Alexander have lately initiated a trend to again incorporate water in delightful ways in our very arid built environment.
Background
There is a strong psychological attraction towards water that has not been fully recognized. I have been repeatedly astonished at the fervent response I get when I talk water with people, especially those who live or work close to it. Our environment is generally so devoid of the visual reinforcement of such a primal need that people seem to be magnetically attracted to the few available examples. In our present society that usually puts heavy industry along its rivers, which have historically been the heart of a community, people rush to
V
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the artificial sources, as if there is a subconscious recognition that man himself is such a high percent water solution.
Charles Moore wrote his Ph.D. dissertation on Water and Architecture because of his "dissatisfaction with the aridity of much of our own architecture." He is one of the few authorities on the subject, dividing the psychological response into two main categories:
1. Immediacy: how water is usually irresistibly attractive to most people, how they want to get as close to it as possible and even get into it (and how railings around water features fly right in the face of this psychological needwhy Halprin's participatory fountains have been such an immediate success).
2. Infinity: how water can create an awe of the infinite as it stretches out to the horizon how even small ponds (or symbolic oceans in Oriental gardens) can create feelings of serenity and a oneness with nature and eternity.
When water is allowed to work in either of these ways, public response is always favorable, and when used together can be astounding. Moore writes of how they were once cleverly combined when the designer of the first tea garden obscured a beautiful view of the sea with a hedge except for a view a guest could get while bending over a stone basin to dip water.

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Asked why, he quoted the short poem:
A bit of water here
There, between the trees
the sea!
He thus reminded his guests, who would glimpse the ocean and their own reflection in the basin at the same time, of their own relationship to the infinite in the same way that the smaller body of water related to the much larger one.
The Orientals often made this union with water so accessible that it could easily be scooped up, and reflections would allow the moon to be held in one's cupped hands. And they would never allow the streams or lakes in their symbolic, microcosmic gardens seem to end always appearing to continue on around a hill or under a bridge, as if it flowed from and toward the infinite. Louis Kahn's Salk Institute does the same as a thin spine one can easily put one's hand in or walk over appears to become a part of the Pacific Ocean.
Christopher Alexander, in Pattern Language, also recognizes the psychological implications. He sites the common psychoanalytical view that bodies of water that appear in people's dreams are fraught with meaning. He quotes Carl Jung's interpretation of water as the dreamer's unconscious and states that "going into water may bring a person closer to the unconscious processes in his life." He continues:
We came from water; our bodies are largely water? and water plays a fundamental role in our psychology.
We need constant access to water, all around us; and

85


we cannot have it without reverence for water in all its forms. But everywhere in cities water is out of reach.
It is no wonder that wells and, later, fountains have been the focal points of most communities. Governments and engineers have gone to great lengths to hide natural flows or barricade them off with very expensive culverts. Streams, which usually can only be found on weekend countryside excursions, are actually a part of nearly everyone's environment, but have been paved over or forced underground.
Alexander concludes that every building project should consider the distribution and access of water, and should bring some water into the environment wherever this nourishing contact is missing.
Preserve natural pools and streams and allow them to run through the city; make paths for people to walk along them and foot bridges to cross them. Let the streams form natural barriers in the city, with traffic crossing them only infrequently on bridges.
Whenever possible, collect rainwater in open gutters and allow it to flow above ground, along pedestrian paths and in front of houses. In places without natural running water, create fountains in the streets.
Happily, many designers have gotten the message and aesthetic uses of water have been proliferating, from Halprin's cascades to residential and commercial projects in the Colorado mountains and Denver area where a cold climate and high evaporation can create significant problems. These hindrances have been proven to be not as difficult as most designers believe:
36


1. Evaporation
Constant filling due to evaporation could become restrictively expensive or make it impossible to obtain a water permit. The Colorado Water Law, which is more convoluted than any stream it adjudicates, must always be contended with. Evaporation must be addressed in some way even if one merely widens a stream. In many areas the amount of water used for normal landscaping is usually more than the evaporation loss in a lake of the same area. Unfortunately, in Colorado, evaporation accounts for about one-third more. But the law does make allowances for aesthetic use, and many of these Colorado projects combine aesthetics with run-off basins and flood retention ponds, which seem to be a legally acceptable compromise. However, pollution caused by run-off must be considered.
2. Ice in Winter
Fountains and canals are often turned off, and their aesthetic qualities without water must be considered. Lakes freezing over in winter seem to be no problem at all. They seem to be regarded as about as beautiful a natural part of the winter landscape and residents enjoy ice-skating on them.
3. Safety
Even though most area water features have small or


(usually) no fences around them, there was never a fear expressed for the safety of small children.
One reason for this is the shallowness of these lakes, especially near the edges. One amenable aspect of water is that it does not need to be very deep in order to appear so even more so using dirty run-off.
4. Pollution and Bad Odors
All the local examples keep water flowing twenty-four hours a day. The rushing water creates an auditory delight which is often the most enjoyed aspect and discourages the growth of algae and noxious odors. Aerators and chemicals are also sometimes needed, and a regular maintenance schedule for trash removal and weed cutting is required. Alexander also suggests making pools a part of running water as the only way to keep them "alive and clean without the paraphernalia of pumps and chlorine." However, even with some chemicals added, most man-made ponds can appear very natural and support large quantities of fish. Fishing is another much appreciated amenity.
5. Expense
The costs are usually, somewhat higher both for construction and maintenance, especially in Colorado where high evaporation is a factor. But the response


/-------------------------------------------------------------------------\
in every survey I have taken is overwhelming.
People love to live next to water, and the closer they are the more they are willing to pay. It seems invariably true that a developer who is willing to spend this extra amount in a sensible manner can receive a return far greater than his outlay.
My initial enthusiasm about water was enhanced by a description of the phenomenal success enjoyed by four California developers ("Housing magazine, September, 1977, pp. 68-77) using a great many artificial lakes and streams. Aside from the obvious aesthetic benefits, water was cleverly used to allow a higher density and subsequent profits. Whereas a 20' lawn between buildings would normally not be wide enough, a 20' wide (or less) canal would create a psychological separation that was more than sufficient to provide privacy.
Also the sound of rushing water (which one developer plans to emphasize more) admirably masked the noise of nearby neighbors.
And the sales of these complexes seem to prove out these theories. Houses closest to the water always sold for thousands of dollars more. Where apartments were rented, comparable quality units in the area
89


rented for 24 There are a number of added amenities that act as a transition between the water and the architecture, such as pavilions, piers, decks, and bridges. (I am sure bridges serve some important psychological link with immediacy.)
Curving paths along ponds and between homes serve as a continuation of the water form. These seem to work best when the communal path is closest to the water with the patios and sloping yards of the houses placed above, thus giving the stroller a more immediate contact with the water while usually not interfering with the view or connection of the people above. And one of the most charming side-effects are the many ducks, geese, and swans that invariably call these bodies of water home.
Waterscaping appears to be one of the most effective ingredients in my goal to create enjoyable environments within a tight economic and profitable framework. I think the philo-sophical/sociological ideas of Alexander and Moore are
90


extremely useful and should be considered in any design with water, especially Moore's ideas on immediacy and infinity. Charles Moore has said of his avant garde architecture, "I work best when I work cheap." Both he and John Portman have explored using exciting design within a tight budget. And both of these very successful architects have used water most effectively in many of their projects. I am very excited about having found recent precedents to follow and improve upon. I am especially thrilled to have an opportunity with this project to test my theories and help return water to its rightful, historically proven close relationship with architecture.
PROGRAM
Despite Len Shoemaker's comment that water in this valley "was so abundant that it scarcely needs mentioning," there are some important issues still undecided for expanding the use of the Robinson Ditch that runs through the front of this site.
(See "Utilities," Water; "Eagle," Water). However, use of this irrigation canal, which is seasonal, is almost certain, and I will incorporate such an expansion in the design of this project in a fairly large, naturalistic way a style that seems to work best when water already exists, using the Japanese "pruning shear" philosophy of merely perfecting what nature has already provided.
Specifics
1. Water must relate to greenbelt, bus terminal, and pedestrian street.


2. Must consider immediacy: allow physical, visual, and auditory participation, avoid fences around water, or make them unmassive.
3. Must consider infinity: not appear to begin or end at some artificial manner.
4. Water should be highly noticeable, becoming a main feature of the site.
a. Perhaps make some roads feel like causeways (an inexpensive bridge).
b. Must be very close to the buildings, at least in part.
c. Put water along the street.
5. Consider aquatic structures: piers, decks, pavilions, bridges.
6. Sound of water is most important: delightful in its own right and can help mask highway noise that will substantially increase.
7. Should appear as natural as possible with natural banks, avoid man-made structures, especially concrete, along edges. Consider conflict:
a. Erosion
b. Grass growing into water promotes algae growth.
8. Soil drains very well, therefore must be lined.
Contact: Pacific Lining Company
46-025 Arabia Street P.O. Drawer GGGG Indio, California 92201