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Old 02-12-2012, 08:09 PM
 
19,399 posts, read 35,270,064 times
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I think your worries over fuel prices have some basis, but are lessening with time.

Bloomberg reports that we are closer to being energy independent than we have been in more than 20 years, and our level of independence is rising as they frack the hell out of vast oil and gas regions. Peak Oil was written long before fracking came to the scene.

One firm is even dismantling it's natgas plant in Chile and bringing it back to the gulf state of LA to help export all that natgas. If we ever get decent natgas legislation out of congress, natgas cars could become big business, and the Durango region has a lot of natgas; it's a major employer down in Farmington.

Excerpt: "The U.S. has reversed a two-decade-long decline in energy independence, increasing the proportion of demand met from domestic sources over the last six years to an estimated 81% through the first 10 months of 2011, ... the highest level since 1992."

We're getting there, and along with more efficient vehicles we'll continue on towards energy independence.

I don't foresee any price explosion, but there's is some possibility of supply disruption if the middle east has a major meltdown.
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Old 02-12-2012, 09:01 PM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,725 posts, read 15,604,834 times
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mfbe wrote:
but there's is some possibility of supply disruption if the middle east has a major meltdown.
Don't even need the meltdown. The press is obediently influencing the population to EXPECT that a meltdown is on the horizon, so that the oil companies don't have to shoulder the blame when they raise prices over the $4 mark in the near future. It's Irans fault, not the oil companies!
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Old 02-13-2012, 02:57 AM
 
Location: relocating
69 posts, read 145,559 times
Reputation: 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike from back east View Post
I think your worries over fuel prices have some basis, but are lessening with time.

Bloomberg reports that we are closer to being energy independent than we have been in more than 20 years, and our level of independence is rising as they frack the hell out of vast oil and gas regions. Peak Oil was written long before fracking came to the scene.

I don't foresee any price explosion, but there's is some possibility of supply disruption if the middle east has a major meltdown.
Durango and La Plata Co. real estate is quite healthy compared to many other areas in the West. Since Durango does not have growth management then the market is stable (same thing in Santa Fe and Albuquerque - New Mexico has the lowest rate of vacancies in the US). Compare Durango to Bend where unemployment is 13% due to growth management.

For transportation to the nearest metro, build a six lane highway between Durango and Albuquerque ... and add bus rapid transit and light rail.

Also, it is very inefficient to serve populations greater than 500,000 persons. The amount of infrastructure in terms of roads, sewers, electricity, etc. increases dramatically. Quality of life may or may go down and crime may or may not go up, so that's why folks want to move to smaller areas. Small towns are more efficient although a minimum size of 100,000 is better than anything smaller.

Somebody wrote that Nederland has a new library. I am terribly sorry to present outdated info. It was a small library when I was there. And someone wrote that Eagle does not have a Wallmart. Maybe I meant Avon.
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Old 02-13-2012, 03:07 AM
 
Location: relocating
69 posts, read 145,559 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
That is why the Front Range metroplex, disgusting as it is, is full of people from western Colorado--the struggle got to be too much for them. For young people starting out, western Colorado--and rural Colorado, in general--is especially economically hostile.
Except that, going back to your other point about increasing prices of Foreign Oil, Durango is 100% bicyclable, and ranked #1 by Outside Magazine (2011) for Mountain Biking. Two thirds of the City Limits are designated as parks. Therefore one does not need to own an SUV in Durango. The City has a wallmart, several grocery stores, a mall, several health food stores, home depot, a top rated liberal arts college, and most other retail services all within biking distance. All these places have jobs, too, since the unemployment rate is about 6%.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
That is why a lot of very smart, well-educated, motivated young people who grew up in rural Colorado have to go elsewhere to find decent work. The people who do stay and manage to make a decent living in rural Colorado usually do so because they are exceptionally motivated
However, this page about the OP who is from out of state (and I'm also in that category). Those of us from the coasts hate it there, and want small towns. The folks who you mention in rural Colorado often go to the big cities, because they've never had that experience. I would trade one for the other, if and when it works out in Colorado or somewhere else.

I have changed my views on big cities several times. Except for places the size of Albuquerque (500,000 to a million depending on what areas you count). But even places like Albuquerque, full of crime and financial corruption, full of violent crime, and that places like Durango will ultimately triple in size in the next 20 to 50 years. People prefer smaller towns if given a choice, in open areas with widely spaced trees surrounded by grasslands. (Savannahs like near Durango with ponderosa pines, chaparral shrubs, grasslands). That's to some extent genetic - OSU - http://eab.sagepub.com/content/42/4/479.abstract

Last edited by JuniperRidge1; 02-13-2012 at 03:18 AM..
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Old 02-13-2012, 06:47 AM
 
Location: On the sunny side of a mountain
2,794 posts, read 5,923,663 times
Reputation: 5043
Quote:
Originally Posted by JuniperRidge1 View Post
Durango and La Plata Co. real estate is quite healthy compared to many other areas in the West. Since Durango does not have growth management then the market is stable (same thing in Santa Fe and Albuquerque - New Mexico has the lowest rate of vacancies in the US). Compare Durango to Bend where unemployment is 13% due to growth management.

For transportation to the nearest metro, build a six lane highway between Durango and Albuquerque ... and add bus rapid transit and light rail.

Also, it is very inefficient to serve populations greater than 500,000 persons. The amount of infrastructure in terms of roads, sewers, electricity, etc. increases dramatically. Quality of life may or may go down and crime may or may not go up, so that's why folks want to move to smaller areas. Small towns are more efficient although a minimum size of 100,000 is better than anything smaller.

Somebody wrote that Nederland has a new library. I am terribly sorry to present outdated info. It was a small library when I was there. And someone wrote that Eagle does not have a Wallmart. Maybe I meant Avon.

I have real estate in Santa fe, there is nothing stable about that market and there has been nothing stable about it for 5 years.
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Old 02-13-2012, 08:00 AM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,725 posts, read 15,604,834 times
Reputation: 9166
jazzlover wrote:
That is why a lot of very smart, well-educated, motivated young people who grew up in rural Colorado have to go elsewhere to find decent work. The people who do stay and manage to make a decent living in rural Colorado usually do so because they are exceptionally motivated
Even though you didn't mention it, I'm sure you are aware that this is not unique to Colorado. It's been going on in most rural areas across the USA for the past 50 years or longer. This is nothing new under the sun!
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Old 02-13-2012, 08:56 AM
 
8,318 posts, read 23,752,451 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JuniperRidge1 View Post
Except that, going back to your other point about increasing prices of Foreign Oil, Durango is 100% bicyclable, and ranked #1 by Outside Magazine (2011) for Mountain Biking. Two thirds of the City Limits are designated as parks. Therefore one does not need to own an SUV in Durango. The City has a wallmart, several grocery stores, a mall, several health food stores, home depot, a top rated liberal arts college, and most other retail services all within biking distance. All these places have jobs, too, since the unemployment rate is about 6%.



However, this page about the OP who is from out of state (and I'm also in that category). Those of us from the coasts hate it there, and want small towns. The folks who you mention in rural Colorado often go to the big cities, because they've never had that experience. I would trade one for the other, if and when it works out in Colorado or somewhere else.

I have changed my views on big cities several times. Except for places the size of Albuquerque (500,000 to a million depending on what areas you count). But even places like Albuquerque, full of crime and financial corruption, full of violent crime, and that places like Durango will ultimately triple in size in the next 20 to 50 years. People prefer smaller towns if given a choice, in open areas with widely spaced trees surrounded by grasslands. (Savannahs like near Durango with ponderosa pines, chaparral shrubs, grasslands). That's to some extent genetic - OSU - Evolutionary Influence on Human Landscape Preference
You obviously don't know much about Durango beyond a superficial visit. First, while the town of Durango itself might be bicyclable (is that really a word?), unless you are crammed into a 1BR condo, it is not affordable to most people who have to work there to make a living. There is hardly anyplace in Colorado where "drive to affordability" is more true. Most people who actually have to work to make a living in Durango have to live in places like Bayfield--20 miles out--to be able to afford a home. The exception is, of course, people who have lived in Durango for 25 or 30 years who bought their home before the real estate market went nuts from out-of-state transplants who brought their money with them bidding everything out of sight.

A six lane highway to Albuquerque? Never happen. In fact, the states and federal government will be damned lucky to even maintain what we have. In case no one has noticed, our existing highway infrastructure is crumbling, and for good reason. It will take so much money to repair it that we couldn't afford it, even if the American people were willing to tax themselves to do it--which they are not.

As for all the big-box stores in Durango, they are hardly convenient to town, and all that crap they sell still has to be shipped in by truck. That stuff ain't comin' in by bicycle. Your statement is a great example of the "stovepipe" thinking that fails to look at the whole picture of the economic geography of a place. I guess they don't teach any of that in school, anymore.

And, as far as unemployment, here's the newsflash for you: Durango has low unemployment because, when people lose their jobs there(or can't even get one there), THEY LEAVE. When they do, they no longer are counted in the unemployment stats. Neither are the affluent retirees and trust-funders, who don't even figure into the unemployment statistics because they aren't looking for work.

I'm absolutely an advocate for small towns, but people have to understand that living in one necessarily means some very significant economic tradeoffs. In a resort community like Durango (and those communities, in many respects, are not a true small town demographically or socially), the tradeoffs are even more stark.

By the way, I've been researching Colorado's economic geography for my entire adult life, beginning when I wrote papers in college analyzing the economic geography and demographics of a Colorado resort community. As I've posted before, my familiarity with Durango goes back over 40 years. I made a conscious decision NOT to live there based on that familiarity. It used to be a really neat town, but that ended about 30 years ago as far as I'm concerned.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:39 AM
 
2,253 posts, read 5,483,973 times
Reputation: 2595
Wink Durango & fuel costs

A recent news report[1] has average petrol prices in the United States .40 higher than this time last year -- and projected to be .60 higher than now by Memorial Day. The highest average price in the US by then, according to this, will be Chicago, at $4.95 per gallon.

No specific mention is this report of Colorado, but if prices remain lower here than in other regions, they can be expected to rise as well. And, unlike the northeast, there is not the population density here, except along the front range, where higher costs in transportation can be easily spread. Whether Lake City or Durango, the petrol will cost roughly the same as elsewhere, but the high transportation costs of goods and services born by relatively few, and personally so when long commutes may be a factor.

It will not matter if US 550 between ABQ and Durango is six or eight lanes. The petrol costs will remain. And that will never happen anyway, as that four-lane road was only built when the political stars aligned, and remains lightly traveled to this day.

That fracking is seen as any kind of panacea only goes to show how far down this rutted road we have driven, before soon bottoming out. If oil was still readily available and cheap, instead of all major finds decades ago, then little interest in such an expensive proposition. One that is basically endeavoring to squeeze the last remaining natural gas out of the ground at huge risk to vital underlying water supplies. Everyone likes to talk about how any real fight in the West involves water, but when it comes to this most crucial of resources being compromised here, all one most often hears is a whimper, or the excuses of promoters who may well be lamenting their stance in years to come, and perhaps trying to rationalize this decision to their kids in their soiled legacy.

Durango is remote. No way about it. That is part of its charm and what makes it what it is. But part of the price to live there will be accounted for in rising fuel costs.

1) 'Gas Prices Soaring,' MSNBC
msnbc.com Video Player
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Old 02-13-2012, 01:34 PM
 
Location: Sunnyvale, CA
4,527 posts, read 8,247,918 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JuniperRidge1 View Post
The western slope is one of the most economically healthy parts of the Western US.
Well, I doubt that. I lived in Grand Junction a couple years ago and it was not doing well. no jobs to be had at all. People competing for the odd McDonald's job to come available.

Quote:
And, overall, the entire economy in Colorado is doing better than most western states,
Probably true, mostly because of the Front Range (Denver). Rural Colorado still in the dumps from what I hear.

Quote:
Durango is also not that isolated; it's just 4 hours from Albuquerque, the
That's darned isolated, in my opinion.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:45 PM
 
9,810 posts, read 17,930,513 times
Reputation: 7488
Quote:
Originally Posted by JuniperRidge1 View Post
For transportation to the nearest metro, build a six lane highway between Durango and Albuquerque ... and add bus rapid transit and light rail.
Serious?

You are going to build a 6 lane highway between a city and a town of 16,000 people over rough terrain?

That's not even real world but off on planet Mars.
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