By now, everyone in Vail should have noticed the Love Vail signs spread throughout our community. The Love Vail campaign and Proposition 402 is a vote of HOPE. It’s the message of hope that Walter Vail held true when he purchased the Empire Ranch and negotiated an easement for the rail siding of Vail. To him, hope meant bringing food to the west, ore to the market, and using rail as the means of progress.

Love Vail means interconnections with people of all walks of life, new and established, young and old, urban and rural. It means creating interconnected trails with The Loop, Arizona Trail, and Colossal Cave Mountain Park for hiking, biking, and equestrian use. It’s creating pathways so all neighborhoods have equal access allowing people to meet, build bonds, and be healthy without intruding on personal space or property of others.

Love Vail means protecting history with the Shrine of Santa Rita in the Desert and the soon-to-be-rehabilitated Old Vail Post Office as the anchors of preservation. It brings in the triad of Vail history of, ranching, mining, and railroading at its core with the historic pathways memorialized by US 80, the Mormon Battalion Trail, and the Butterfield stage route. It means creating a historic district for shopping and eating all in character to the historic Vail founded in 1880 and recognized as a community in 1893.

Love Vail means conserving water and open space with our neighboring partners of the Saguaro National Park, Coronado National Forest, Rincon Wilderness and Pima County Conservation Land including Colossal Cave Mountain Park, and the Cienega Creek Preserve. Vail can capitalize on being the prickly pear capital and the ecological four corners of the southwest, becoming a tourist destination for outdoor recreation and sky-island conservation.

Love Vail means creating shared space such as a league-play ballpark, a recreation center, and park land for family gatherings. It means teaching our children to swim, having a wholesome place for youth to play sports, a drop-off daycare for exercising parents, and pickleball courts for active adults. Vail can build on the junction of structured and outdoor recreation capitalizing on our natural beauty and accessibility with exercise of mind, body, and spirit.

Love Vail means carefully crafting development of vacant lands with aesthetics of existing neighborhoods and the values important to the people of Vail. It means having areas designated for commercial growth, places for industrial development, and on-going residential construction. These constituencies work together so they are congruent yet protected by each other. It means grandfathering pastoral areas for lifestyle choices and existing zoning so they remain in character yet accessible for the convenience of shopping, medical access, and public safety.

Love Vail means improving infrastructure with better traffic mitigation, better roads, and better safety. It means holding the growth community accountable for infrastructure impacts along with a proactive police department that provides a positive public service to our citizens. It means protecting Vail from intrusion of neighboring interests such as annexation or mining. None of this happens under Pima County. It only happens when we determine our own destiny.

As a statement of truth, there is opposition in all things. LOVE VAIL spreads a message of HOPE. For everyone who Loves Vail, there is a party of “NO” who spreads a message of doubt. For Proposition 402, it’s your choice – to VOTE YES and its message of HOPE or vote no and its message of doubt.

By IVA Board of Directors:  David Hook, MaRico Tippett, Pam Kelty, Elaine Schmerbeck, Peter Backus, Linda Broadwater, Jerrie Jean Lamb, Jonathan Lounds, Brent Nichols, and Rob Samuelsen

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