ASPEN REAL ESTATE – Both sides wrangling over the location of a new luxury home in an active alluvial fan on a hillside in the lower Maroon Creek valley have appealed a recent decision by a Pitkin County hearing officer.The debate among the wealthy landowners, in a relatively new neighborhood just below the T Lazy 7 Ranch, will now go in front of the Pitkin County commissioners.On one side of the fight is an unidentified owner with ties to Hong Kong. On the other is a Chicago billionaire and heir to the Hyatt hotel fortune,Tom and Margot Pritzker. Special counsel for the city of Aspen Jim True, acting in his role as a contractually paid hearing officer for the county, ruled on Aug. 6 that a 15,000-square-foot home proposed by the Celestial Land Co. could be built where the entity has proposed — in a known “debris flooding and debris flow” area — but that the home could only be 8,250 square feet.True based his decision on a provision in the land use code that states when a home is proposed to be built in “a constrained area,” the maximum size of the home “may be limited.”
By Brent Gardener-Smith, August 31, 2010, Aspen Daily News

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