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Guest opinion: Community will live with impact of PCMR project

David Gordon
Old Town

The time and efforts of the Park City planning commissioners and staff that have gone into the review of the PCMR base area development project is commendable. Thank you for your commitment and for the open forum being used to review this application.

Unfortunately, it appears that the time and effort required is directly related to the many problems and issues that the applicant’s proposal brings with it. In the early stages of the project, the applicant appeared to listen to concerns from the commission and the public and made significant changes in the project concept; however, in the past months, it appears that very little progress has been made in moving the applicant to a more acceptable concept.

It is assumed that the planning staff has had many discussions with the applicant as to potential modifications of the project that could serve to move it forward less contentiously but because such discussions are not in the public domain, here are suggestions for potential compromise that will challenge the applicant but also require significant exceptions to the Land Management Code (LMC) and those 1998 approvals that are still valid.



Transit and parking:

• Grant a reduction in the LMC requirements for parking required for the new structures but not to the extent requested by the applicant, as their analysis is suspect. Allocate parking spaces to the affordable units and employee housing units. Allocate multiple spaces to residential units in excess of a certain square footage, perhaps 1,500. Eliminate the stacked parking by the valet at the parcel C hotel. This might reduce the parking space exception to the LMC requirement from roughly 500 to perhaps 350.



• Dedicate an area to local program drop-off/pick-up and parking, perhaps an entire level in the parcel E parking structure as this would be the closest to the ski area.

• Require ongoing resort/developer funding for remote parking and transit for employees and guests from wherever the joint jurisdictions determine that to be most effective in the overall transit plan.

• Increase the general public drop-off/pick-up area, including cars for hire, whether inside or outside of the structures that is accessed separately from the general public day parking in order to foster more efficient circulation.

Building height and setback exceptions:

• Limit exceptions to the building heights and offer exceptions to the open space so that building mass could be spread across the parcels. The open space for this project is the mountain with ski runs and the trail system. Forgo the large plazas and corridors, spread the structures into these areas and dramatically reduce building heights and mass.

• Grant setback exceptions in exchange for more effective step up of roof lines. Roof lines should start no higher than those of adjacent/opposing structures and then could step up from that level perhaps by one or two additional levels.

• Build below-grade parking to create the additional parking spaces required because the applicant’s requested LMC exception of some 500 spaces is not acceptable and to reduce building heights.

• Forgo some of the approved density to reduce building heights if below-grade parking cannot be achieved.

Understanding that this project was approved in 1998, it is worthwhile to gain insight as to the motivations, intentions and trade-offs made at that time and not merely allow the applicant’s proposal to carry forward the conditions that benefit their interests while excluding aspects of the project that would have benefited the local community.

This community will live with the long-term impact on vehicle and pedestrian circulation in and around the base area and the project’s aesthetic integration with historic Old Town long after the developer has left the scene. Please urge our planning commissioners and staff to continue with their diligence in making sure this project conforms to the LMC and will serve the interests of the community for years to come.


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