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Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
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Copyright © 2001 Express Publishing Inc.
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For the week of Jan 30 - Feb 5, 2002


Right place, right time

Ketchum took the first step toward realizing a second housing development for working people when the City Council voted 3-0 to seek tax-credit financing for the project.

Council member Maurice Charlat abstained, saying he supports affordable housing but opposes the Main Street site.

Charlat’s colleagues, Randy Hall, Chris Potters and Baird Gourlay had no such reservations. They did the right thing in voting to proceed.

There is no perfect site.

To hold out for the perfect site is to put off meeting this pressing need forever.

Other potential sites already owned by the city are mostly parking lots with their own sets of problems.

A land exchange suggested by some opponents would simply substitute one set of objections for another.

Ketchum needs to face up to its housing problem and get on with the complicated business of getting units built. Town Center, with 20 affordable units of various sizes, will be a good start.

What better place for housing than in the heart of Ketchum, close to jobs, shopping and entertainment?

High-value market rate units on both of Ketchum’s major thoroughfares have sold well, proving that downtown is an attractive location.

The development will meet a number of needs besides housing.

It will provide space for offices, shops, meeting rooms, and a visitors’ center.

It will replace Old City Hall--a dilapidated eyesore that should have been torn down long ago. The new visitors’ center will replace one that is far from adequate.

The downtown units will keep at least 20 cars a day off the highway—a plus for every commuter.

The Ketchum City Council deserves credit for its leadership on the project.

Residents will have plenty of opportunities to shape the design of the development. It will have to undergo design-review scrutiny in public meetings like every other building constructed in the city’s downtown.

If all goes well, the development itself will become a powerful argument for the desirability and workability of developing housing in Ketchum.

Town Center is the right development in the right place at the right time.


The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.