Vail Resorts seeks permits to replace two PCMR lifts
A firm under the corporate umbrella of Vail Resorts earlier in February filed paperwork at City Hall seeking permits to replace two lifts at Park City Mountain Resort, part of the Colorado company’s ambitious plan to complete a series of upgrades prior to the start of the next ski season.
The upgrades are outlined in a submittal to the Park City Planning Department. Officials released the paperwork in response to a Park Record request under state open-records laws.
VR CPC Holdings, Inc. intends to replace the King Con lift, which is now a four-person lift, with a six-person lift. The project also involves a conveyor carpet meant to help people board the lift. The firm wants to upgrade the terminals of the King Con lift and replace the chairs. The towers would remain along the same alignment.
The current King Con terminals would be relocated to the top and bottom of the route of the three-person Motherlode lift. The Motherlode lift would be turned into a four-person lift that would be faster than the current one. New towers will be installed along the Motherlode lift route. The number of towers on the Motherlode lift route would be reduced by using a different technology, according to the paperwork.
The submittal says the King Con upgrade would reduce wait times and "provide improved access to the popular intermediate terrain in the King Con skier pod." The upgrade to the Motherlode lift "will improve the quality of the experience given a reduced ride time and improved skier access to what is currently an underutilized pod of skiing given the older and slower" lift there now, the paperwork says.
City Hall staffers have the authority to approve the permits. Staffers will consider a series of issues as they reach a decision, including the location, traffic and parking impacts anticipated as a result of the upgrades, noise and the environmental impact.
John Boehm, the staffer assigned to the application, said City Hall sent 847 letters to nearby property owners informing them of the proposal. He said staffers received a few emails from the public regarding plans to lessen the impact of construction. Boehm said those plans will be crafted as VR CPC Holdings, Inc. secures a building permit.
He said staffers anticipate approving the permits needed from the Planning Department early next week. The building permit would be granted later.
Vail Resorts anticipates spending more than $50 million on improvements at PCMR and Canyons Resort this year as the firm combines them into one property. The centerpiece is the proposed Interconnect Gondola that would link the two resorts, but other upgrades like the work anticipated on the King Con and Motherlode lifts are seen as important to overall operation of the combined resort.
Vail Resorts earlier publicized its intentions to pursue the upgrades and the recent submittal to the Planning Department was expected.
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Park City Attorney Margaret Plane recently sent a memo to elected and appointed officials, as well as candidates in the City Hall election, cautioning them about making public statements regarding development proposals. The memo outlines that stands on planning and zoning matters could jeopardize a later process, such as when a decision by the Planning Commission is put to the City Council through an appeal.