ASPEN PITKIN COUNTY REAL ESTATE – A wealthy midvalley landowner who has proposed a massive private-public land swap criticized Pitkin County in a blustery letter to its commissioners on Sunday, touting support for the swap from other entities and claiming the county board has been uncooperative. After more than a year of lobbying the county to support the swap, billionaire Leslie Wexner and his wife, Abigail, implied they may take their proposal to Congress against the county’s wishes.Since January of last year, the Wexners have been petitioning the Pitkin County commissioners — through their attorneys and Western Lands Group — to endorse the exchange. The Wexners want to trade their undeveloped 520-acre Sutey Ranch, in Garfield County, for 1,268 acres of federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) property in Pitkin County. Leslie Wexner controls Limited Brands, whose stores include Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works. The BLM land splits sections of his existing 3,944-acre estate on the north flanks of Mount Sopris, known as “Two Shoes.” This swap would make the ranch one contiguous area.
By Andrew Travers, March 16, 2010 Aspen Daily News