The Wonderland World Of Lot 4
To The Editor:
“Curiouser and curiouser!” Cried Alice (she was so much surprised, that for the moment she quite forgot how to speak good English.)” Where the Friends of Lot 4 are concerned, we too seem to be living in Alice’s topsy-turvey world. Having milked about all they can from rhapsodizing about the “magnificent views” and quintessential conservation values attached to a vacant lot adjacent to the Safeway, the “Friends,” four in number, have in recent days turned their guns upon the EPMC/Anschutz Wellness Center project. These individuals, none of whom are financial professionals with any experience in the world of business where payrolls do have to be met and books balanced, would have you believe:
That the business model that Phil Anschutz invested 30 million dollars in Anschutz Health and Wellness Center in Aurora is somehow deeply flawed in conception and design and that Mr. Anschutz is, therefore, a misguided philanthropist and investor;
That the dollar return to Estes Park projected by Town officials from the sale of Lot 4 and the building out of the EPMC/Anschutz Wellness Center has been concocted out of whole cloth;
That, despite the very existence of the Anschutz/University of Colorado Health and Wellness Center, that there is no empirical scientific research to justify its claims that wellness transforms; and that John Cullen, owner of the Stanley Hotel and some 20 other properties around the world, and Brian Hedwig, the CEO of the Estes Park Medical Center, are so irresponsible in their respective fiduciary roles as to endorsed a business plan that will make them no money.
Next we are going to hear that the independent third-party analysis prepared by Dr. Martin Shields, Director of the Regional Economics Institute at CSU, demonstrating a substantial dollar return to the Town has been somehow similarly “cooked.” (This, despite the fact, that these same critics have been calling for an independent third-party analysis for weeks.)
The tactics of the Lot 4 crowd are now abundantly clear. This is a perfect example of the old “bait and switch” ploy that says if you can’t sustain a good argument in support of your own announced goal, then just change the subject. Then, for good measure, regardless of your own credentials, throw enough dirt at your opponents and theirs and pray that some of it will stick. Alice was right!
Estes Park, CO