Eagle County

Parked: Mobile Home Parks Are Immigrants' Home Away From Home

Sep 18, 2019
Resident
Tina Griego / The Colorado Independent

The Aspens Mobile Home Village sits on a wedge of land tucked between eastbound I-70 and the Eagle River in the mountains near Vail. The park is easy to miss in the blur of freeway speeds — trees, a fence, trailers flashing past before the blue sign for Exit 167 zooms into view, advertising Burger King and Subway and Fiesta Jalisco.

Dozens of residents of a community in Eagle County have been allowed to return to their homes after being evacuated the night before because of a gas leak.

The Vail Daily reports that a construction worker ruptured a natural gas line at about 5 p.m. Thursday at Edwards, which is located along Interstate 70 west of Vail.

Eagle County
Matt Bloom / KUNC

It's 9 a.m. and the Eagle County paramedics building is already bustling with activity. The sheriff's department just called. They need help with a potentially suicidal person.

A group of four mental health crisis clinicians huddles around a conference table cluttered with laptops and coffee mugs. They're discussing the morning's situation.

"We want to spend time with them and just talk to them versus just doing a risk assessment and leaving, you know," clinician John Medveckis said while putting on his cap and gloves. "We just want to create a relationship."

Bente Birkeland / RMCR

Eighty-four-year-old Joyce Reiche has a two-bedroom home close to downtown Eagle, Colorado, on the Western Slope. Like many, she's trying to plan for the next phase of life.

"The things I used to like to do I can't do any more, like hike, cross-country ski, go up to the mountains, and do things like that," Reiche said. "I mainly stay home, but I'm content at home."

Colorado's population is not only growing, it's also getting older. Many of the state's counties are poised to see huge increases in the number of people over the age of 65 in the next 25 years.

Nathan Heffel / KUNC

Heading to the slopes of Vail or Beaver Creek? There are also a wealth of places outside the ski resorts that locals say you can’t miss. Here's five that highlight the diverse topographical and cultural makeup of the 1,692 square mile county.

Nathan Heffel / KUNC

Built in 1890, the First Evangelical Lutheran Church has the distinction of not being the earliest constructed building in Eagle County, but the oldest still standing. Facing dwindling parishioners, the 124-year-old church on the corner of Eagle Street and Second in Gypsum, Colorado is now looking to that long history for its salvation.

Nathan Heffel / KUNC

Towns across the Vail Valley are accelerating construction projects in anticipation of the "Super Bowl of alpine skiing," the 2015 FIS World Alpine Ski Championships. While the valley is no stranger to the event, there's still a lot of work to be done.

"Since the inception of the World Championships in 1931 there have only been 23 resorts around the world that have had the opportunity to host this once," said Vail Valley Foundation spokesman John Dakin. "This is our third time."

That unprecedented opportunity means investments in infrastructure, technology and services. The hope is that it will not only benefit the races, but the valley over the long haul as well.

Nathan Heffel / KUNC

As winter arrives in Colorado, a familiar friend came to town with it: winter driving. Traffic between Denver and the Vail Valley is notorious in the cold months, but Colorado's Department of Transportation said they’re ready for another long winter. But is there a permanent solution to the Interstate 70 problem, or are we doomed to more long delays and closures?

American Gypsum

As you drive through Eagle County, it's no surprise that the area is making a living on the hills that bookend the Interstate. There's plenty of world class skiing to be had in Vail or Beaver Creek. Continue on down the road though, and you'll find another part of the valley making a different living off those hills: Gypsum, Colorado.

Some of the biggest ski resorts anywhere lie in U.S. Rep. Jared Polis' Colorado district, dotting the peaks of Summit and Eagle counties, about a hundred miles west of Denver. The area has a high rate of uninsured people and also, it turns out, health plans that are much more expensive than similar plans in surrounding regions. So expensive that Polis, a Democrat, has asked the federal government to exempt some of his constituents from the requirement to buy health insurance.

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