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Posted on: February 24, 2022

City Seeks Community Input on Future Programming Options for Historic Armory Hall

An image of the armory aganist a backdrop of the City of ASpen with text asking for community input

PRESS RELEASE

City Seeks Community Input on Future Programming Options for Historic Armory Hall
Community can take questionnaire and share ideas on Aspen Community Voice

Aspen, Colo. – Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022 – The City of Aspen is seeking community input in the development of a long-term strategy regarding the remodel and future programming use of Armory Hall (Armory), located at 130 South Galena Street.

Built in 1891, the Armory has a long, rich history in the City of Aspen. The building has served as a place to store military equipment and practice drills, a home to numerous Aspen’s lodges and clubs, a roller rink, and Aspen’s City Hall. With most City departments recently moving to the new City Hall location on Rio Grande Place, Aspen now has an opportunity to explore what future programming options at the Armory may be. 

Previous conversations regarding the Armory, including ballot questions in 2015 and 2018, have indicated a preference to maintain some level of community access and use at the facility. The City hopes to engage the community on this project to check-in on the values Aspen has expressed in the past as plans for the building’s future develop.

“The City understands that community use is a priority for the building, but we need to hear more about what that really means,” shared Project Manager Jenifer Phelan. “For example, how should the property be used and what type of access is needed. Should the Armory be used for public activities, or should it house local services that support the community? These are areas we will be seeking clarity on as we move forward in the planning process.”

The City is seeking input to ensure that in developing a recommended option, the plan will reflect the variety of perspectives and needs in our community. Anticipating robust public participation with a myriad of potential programming ideas, the City developed several guiding principles to assist in considering and evaluating any proposed remodel and programming options. These factors, presented to the City Council at the recent February 7 work session, include:

  • The building remodel will incorporate sustainable systems showing a commitment to the environment.
  • The Armory should be able to be used by a diverse range of people.
  • The uses within the Armory should provide meaningful and affordable participation in programs and offerings.
  • The operational structure of the Armory should limit the public financial burden of operating and maintaining the building.
  • The remodel will respect the historic context and contribute to Aspen’s small-town character.
  • The programming of the Armory should contribute to a lively and diverse downtown.
  • The programming at the Armory should focus on unmet needs within the community.

“The first round of engagement will help us define what are the community’s values and priorities are for the Armory. We’re also excited to learn what ideas are out there for this space,” Phelan said. “Having these guiding principles offers the City a framework to vet proposed programming ideas with to ensure alignment.” 

The community is encouraged to submit ideas, share stories, ask questions, and participate in an online questionnaire. The questionnaire is open for submissions and will close at 5 p.m. on March 18. For more information and engagement opportunities, please visit www.aspencommunityvoice.com.

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