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Sun Valley wants flights from Denver

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Mine cleanup continues

SILVERTON, Colo. — Work is proceeding this summer on cleanup of four mine areas in the Animas River watershed, most of them near Silverton. The river drains from Silverton down through Durango.

Most difficult among the projects, reports the Durango Telegraph, is cleanup of the Pride of the West Mine. The mine is located on a steep slope at 12,000 feet, and the task there is to redirect two streams from going through the old mine, where they pick up heavy metals from the exposed rock. To do this, 180,000 pounds of steel are being flown in by helicopter.

Altogether, the Animas River Stakeholders Group has designated 67 projects as priorities. The group has been at this effort of reducing the contamination of metals into the Animas River for 15 years.

Bill Simon, group co-ordinator, complains that work at other projects is being sullied by ATV and four-wheel-drive vehicles that are chewing up the sites, apparently unaware of what they are doing. He has appealed to the Bureau of Land Management to take steps to educate the public and restrict access by creating mounds.

Vail buying water rights

EAGLE VALLEY, Colo. — A deal is close to being signed that will result in a major purchase of water rights by two water organizations in the Vail-Beaver Creek areas of the Eagle Valley. Cost of the purchase is estimated at $5 million.

The water is being diverted from the headwaters of the Yampa River drainage, which would otherwise flow through Steamboat Springs. The water won’t actually be diverted to the Vail area, but will instead be used to meet senior downstream rights such as those belonging to a power plant in Glenwood Canyon and peach farmers near Grand Junction. Steamboat and other downstream users initially fought the sale, but relented after being satisfied they would not be injured by the trans-basin diversions.

The amount of water, 1,250 acre-feet, is roughly enough to meet the needs of 5,000 people. The water districts currently serve 22,000 people, notes the Vail Daily.

Appropriate for pig pens?

JACKSON HOLE, Wyo. — Visions of the landscape — and how people live in it — are clashing in Jackson Hole. At issue is the architecture of a new housing complex that contains free-market and deed-restricted employee housing.

Following a current architectural theme, the homes in the complex called 810 West are sheathed in shiny corrugated metal. Such metal is better reserved for use in pigpens, said one letter writer to the Jackson Hole News & Guide. Another woman, faced with the alternative of living in those homes or moving to Montana, chose the latter. Yet another woman accused planners of being at a cocktail party when the development was approved.

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