- Associated Press - Saturday, February 22, 2014

BASALT, Colo. (AP) - Basalt officials are hoping a monument made of basalt and an art piece that will be placed at the main entrance to the town will draw visitors to turn off major highways and stop downtown.

Basalt designer Nick Aceto won a competition that attracted seven entries. He was awarded $2,500 for his efforts, and the Town Council approved a $25,000 budget to build and install the sign. It will be placed in the roundabout at Basalt Avenue, near the Basalt convenience store and gas station.

Aceto is a landscape designer by trade and principal in Terrain Studio, which has an office in Basalt.

Aceto’s design prominently features basalt rock, from which the town gets its name. Basalt tiles run the length of much of the sign, which is about 12 feet high and 8 feet wide.

The name of the town dominates the stainless-steel sign panel. Smaller print says, “Welcome to” above the prominent Basalt. Below it continues a description of the town’s top draw: “confluence of rivers, recreation and culture.”



A fishing fly has prominent placement on the sign. Riveted steel in the shape of a mining sluice box runs vertically beside the basalt tiles. The left edge of the sign highlights steel that resembles a trestle on a train track.

The large rocks are favored for use in building materials and statues.

Lynne Mace, a member of the jury for the competition and also a member of the Basalt Sign Committee, said the monument sign should do a better job of welcoming visitors to the town and attracting them to check it out, the Aspen Times reported (https://tinyurl.com/mnrfd8x).

“When you come off of Colorado Highway 82, it’s pretty dismal,” she said, noting the sights of a gas station and mobile home park at the Basalt Avenue entrance.

Aceto’s design “makes a statement,” she said. “It’s a monument sign that will attract people off of Highway 82.”

The same look and feel will be used on signs throughout town limits. Three additional signs, similar to the original, will be used at Willits Town Center, Willits Design and Industrial Center and Basalt Business Center, which many people refer to as Southside. The sign committee will pursue budgets and plans for the smaller replicas as soon as the monument sign is installed, she said. Aceto said that could be as soon as June.

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Information from: The Aspen Times, https://www.aspentimes.com/

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