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Jason Blevins

The Colorado Sun — jason@coloradosun.com

Colorado Tourism Office’s new director will stay the course on sustainability, mitigating visitor impacts

Timothy Wolfe replaces Cathy Ritter, who was ousted from her six-year position in April by Pat Meyers, Colorado’s new director of the Office of Economic Development and International Trade

Business

Dig it or chew it? Gravel mine expansion near Salida mountain bike trail latest clash of industry, recreation

Hard Rock Paving wants to expand its Salida gravel mine by 63 acres and will realign the Solstice bike trail. Nearby residents oppose any mine expansion while mountain bikers prefer a bigger buffer between pit and trail.

Outdoors

Five Western Slope startups collect more than $3 million in pitch contest

Durango’s Agile Space Industries, Telluride’s Western Rise, Gunnison’s SheFly, Konbit and Fruita’s Sky Peak Technologies win the second annual Greater Colorado Pitch Series

Business

Flooded with tourists, Colorado mountain towns are starting to limit short-term rentals to combat housing crisis

Colorado resort towns are limiting vacation rentals as communities weather waves of tourists, a housing crisis and a labor shortage.

Housing

An abandoned coal mine near Aspen has become a mountain biking park for the masses

Well-heeled owners offer clean up of the Coal Basin mine and perpetual access to a new trail network there. The unusual public-private collaboration could serve as a model for restoring environmental danger zones.

Outdoors

Glenwood Canyon closes again as forest ecologists scramble to seed burn zone and prevent mudslides

Glenwood Canyon closed to traffic for almost three hours on Tuesday as rain threatened more mudslides. Forest botanists are working to stabilize and restore the Grizzly Creek burn zone to prevent more debris flows and highway closures.

Transportation

Colorado mountain towns say they can’t handle any more tourists amid labor, housing crises

Colorado tourism cheerleaders hasten their transition from destination marketing to management as resort town locals call for more housing and less promotion.

Business

Seven Peaks Festival pulls out of Buena Vista after county declines to raise its 5,000-person capacity cap

Live Nation sold more than 6,000 tickets for the event before Chaffee County commissioners had reviewed or approved the concert promoter’s permit

Music

White River forest chief sticks with controversial route for road to future mansions despite wildfire, wildlife concerns

Both the developer and wildlife advocates oppose the road accessing the inholding — but for different reasons

Environment

You’ve seen the murals. Now meet the pro snowboarder behind them.

Pat Milbery channels lessons from carving snow into bright murals across Colorado. “He almost embodies his design,” said the Avon official who hired him.

Arts

Minturn wrestles with the decade-old promises of a big-dream developer

In 2008, resort developer Bobby Ginn offered Minturn residents $162 million in perks if they annexed his mountaintop project, which he never built. So what about those million-dollar promises?

Business

Shipping container hotel in Florence sparks new ideas for Colorado housing

Two entrepreneurs building homes out of shipping containers in an industrial zone hope to seed an affordable community as innovators flock to Florence.

Housing

Storage units becoming as hard to get as affordable housing as wealthy remote workers take over the high country

Waitlists are growing for tens of thousands of storage lockers in mountain communities as new homeowners arrive, residents relocate and local workers scramble for rental homes.

Housing

A rare new coal mine in southern Colorado adds to Trinidad’s economic revival

The new operator of the New Elk Coal Mine outside Trinidad sparks a dormant economic engine while grappling with Colorado’s trademark issues of housing and positive drug tests.

Business

Survey of Colorado’s high-country residents a “wake-up call” on the devastating implications of the affordable housing crisis

The consequences of workers and permanent residents being priced out include mountain communities being forced to rethink their relationship to the tourism economy.

Housing

Colorado Mountain College to spend $40M to build housing for students getting priced out of mountain towns

Housing accounts for most of the cost of a CMC degree, so 40 units each are planned for campuses in Breckenridge, Edwards, Spring Valley and Steamboat Springs.

Housing

How emergency declarations in Colorado’s high country housing crisis smooth the path to more homes for locals

A "disaster" resolution over housing in Crested Butte enables the town to bypass codes, buy a hotel, remove limits on downtown camping and curtail short-term rentals. More communities are planning similar declarations as high country housing crisis reaches a crescendo.

Housing

Colorado ski area rent to federal landlords fell 20% in 2019-20

Colorado ski areas sent $24 million in rent to the U.S. Treasury after the pandemic-clipped 2019-20 season. Newly proposed legislation could allow local forests like the White River National Forest to retain up to 75% of rent collected at ski areas inside their boundaries.

Outdoors

Colorado ranchers are selling off cattle to survive another year of dried-up grass and parched soil

The land is so thirsty, water is soaked up before it can reach reservoirs, crops

Climate

Discovery of gray wolf pups won’t change Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s reintroduction work

Wildlife officials say the confirmation of the first wolf family in Colorado since the 1940s will help biologists establish more gray wolves in the state.

Outdoors
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