Telluride Daily Planet
December 10, 2008

Before it legally took the Valley Floor from its previous owner, Telluride appraised the land at its doorstep at $26 million.

After a protracted court case, the town paid $50 million.

Now that Telluride owns the Floor, the town has paid for a more thorough appraisal of its ecological health, and a team of ecologist from Boulder has spent the past several months surveyuing the floor.

The team presented its findings over the past two days to a Rebekah Hall room filled with dozens of the Valley Floor’s proud new owners.

What the town got was a long, skinny glacier deposit bursting with eclogical diversity, wetlands, native prairie dogs and a possible migration path for an endangered species (lynx), historical artifacts from the valley’s first settlers to a fairly recent pair of sewer ponds. The Floor is a mix of highly sensitive wetlands and cruddy mine tailings.

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