Guest editorial: Impact of Woodward Park City will be immense for neighbors
January 12, 2018
I attended the Snyderville Planning Commission meeting held January 9th at the Summit County Library. While my interest in this meeting was specifically to learn about the low income housing proposed for future build on Rasmussen Road, the first item to be discussed on the agenda was the Woodward Park.
Admittedly, I had not followed the details of this proposed Conditional Use Permit (CUP) until tonight when I learned the depth of this mis-represented CUP.
I learned in this meeting that, in fact, this is not a CUP, but rather a full blown recreational facility. The Woodward group, (owned by Powdr Corp), likened the Woodward facility to the Marc, Basin Rec and other commercial recreational facilities in the greater Park City area. They were mentioning these various facilities in comparison to the size and height of their proposed buildings. Nonetheless, it became clear almost immediately the Woodward facility is a huge recreation facility.
The impact to residents of the surrounding area is immense. Ambient light will highly impact our night sky for many in Pinebrook as well as Jeremy Ranch. Make no mistake, this is a ski resort. The proposal includes a chair lift!!! The noise, along with the copious number of people, not only using the facility, but spectators gathering on residential roads and streets to watch outdoor events is a major concern. Traffic is a concern. Yes, UDOT is creating a round-a-bout to facilitate traffic from the I-80 exit, to include Kilby/Lookout Rds, but take note of the horrendous traffic at the Tanger round-a-bout during holidays and summer events in Park City. Traffic is a very real future nightmare.
The majority of residents purchased homes in the Pinebrook and Jeremy Ranch area specifically for the benefits of the night sky, presence of wildlife and to be a bit removed from the PC crowds. The proposed Woodward facility would severely impact every aspect of these benefits.
Ask yourself why Woodward wasn't built at the base of PCMR as initially proposed. Powdr Corp's original development rights for the Gorgoza location (1999-ish), expired, the five year extension expired. This was because they intended to put this facility at the base of PCMR. Then the dreaded backdated lease debacle occurred which opened the door for Vail to take PCMR. How can Powdr Corp be trusted to keep their word on all the promises they "propose"? There are also a number of "special variances" needed to build in the Gorgoza location. As stated prior, this is a full blown ski resort, complete with chair lift, snow blowers, large lights, much noise, etc. Are "special variances" worth disturbing the quality of life of many residents? Don't get me started on the impact to the wildlife in the Gorgoza area.
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Woodward sounds like a fantastic recreational facility for kids in Park City, and surrounding areas. Get 100 percent buy in from the community by locating this facility in an area that with no impact to residents. The area around Home Depot, or anywhere along Old Hwy 40 maybe?