Park City landslide breaks loose, reaching exterior of slopeside hotel
Nobody injured as dirt and snow up to 15 feet deep moves down hillside
A landslide broke loose in the vicinity of Park City Mountain on Saturday, sending dirt and snow down a small hillside, uprooting at least one tree and reaching a small section of the exterior of a hotel on the slopes.
A slide is an extraordinarily rare event in Park City and the location so close to Park City Mountain makes the episode even more notable.
It happened at approximately 2:30 p.m. The break occurred close to the property line between Park City Mountain and the King’s Crown project, according to the King’s Crown developer.
The top of the slide path is located close to the northern end of Rothwell Road, a private street off Lowell Avenue that serves King’s Crown, while the materials that moved in the slide came to rest just outside Marriott’s MountainSide.
Nobody was injured. Park City Mountain said the slide did not cause any damage at the resort.
King’s Crown is under construction just uphill from Marriott’s MountainSide. Aerial photos of the slide show it broke free close to the project’s construction zone. A member of the King’s Crown ownership, Rory Murphy, said the slide measured approximately 100 feet in length and approximately 70 feet in width. It is estimated to be up to 15 feet deep at its deepest point, he said. Murphy said it broke at least one window at Marriott’s MountainSide.
“A lot of earth moved,” he said.
Murphy said the slide “shook everybody up” and emphasized that nobody was injured, saying “it begins and ends with that.”
Murphy said a preliminary investigation indicated the ground became oversaturated during the heavy snow in the winter and spring, leading to the instability that caused the slide. He said more research into the cause is underway.
City Hall is conducting one of the probes underway and on Monday released a prepared statement about the incident.
“We have been in contact with affected property owners and they are working with geotechnical engineering professionals to make sure any repairs are conducted properly and safely. We will continue to monitor the situation and work proactively with everyone involved,” the municipal government said.
Murphy, a veteran Park City developer, said there had not been issues with the ground during the construction until the slide on Saturday. There were no warning signs of a threat the land could slide, he said. Murphy said a house and a house under construction are the closest structures to the top of the slide.
The Park City Police Department received a report about the slide later on Saturday. The department the next day recorded video and took photographs of the scene. A drone was deployed, the police said.
Murphy said a timeline for the cleanup is not finalized since the work cannot start until the ground dries. The length of the cleanup was not clear at the beginning of the week. Murphy said, though, the cleanup is anticipated to be finished before the start of the 2023-2024 ski season.
“It’s an incredibly unfortunate and difficult situation and we will address it fully,” he said.
A Marriott Vacations Worldwide spokesperson issued a prepared statement about the landslide, saying it “caused some damage at Marriott’s MountainSide in Park City. No associates or guests were injured when an exterior wall of the building was pushed into an unoccupied villa during the landslide. The safety and well-being of our Owners, guests and associates remains a priority as we continue to assess the damage.”
The slide is another bit of evidence of just how remarkable the winter’s snowfall was. Park City Mountain reported receiving more than 630 inches of snow, allowing the resort to extend the ski season until a final day that was celebrated on Monday. Deer Valley Resort also extended the ski season.
A silver mining-era structure at Park City Mountain, meanwhile, suffered severe damage in a collapse discovered in early April. A preservation group said the heavy snow of the winter and spring caused the collapse. And part of an Old Town house collapsed in early April as a result of the amount of snow that had collected on the roof.
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Sertner intends to address the related issues of transportation and parking — key topics in the community’s traffic-fighting efforts — in his platform. He described a vision involving park-and-ride lots or garages off Interstate 80 and U.S. 40 with transit service between those locations and destinations in Park City.
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