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Vail Moves Forward on Plans for Park City-Canyons Gondola

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After announcing an ambitious $50 million one-year investment in their Park City/Canyons properties a few weeks ago, Vail Resorts has now filed their application for the proposed upgrades. Vail Resorts bought Park City Mountain Resort from Powdr Corp for $182.5 million in September, and the industry heavyweight had hinted that big improvements were coming to Utah. This week's application asks Park City officials to amend an overall PCMR development plan to allow an eight-passenger gondola and a whole bucket list of other on-mountain improvements.

The application filed at City Hall will be put before the Park City Planning Commission, and discussions on the matter should begin as early as February. Curious as to what $50 million worth of upgrades includes?

· The Interconnect Gondola: An eight-passenger, high-speed two-way gondola from the base of the existing Silverlode Lift at Park City to the Flatiron Lift at Canyons. The gondola will also have an unload at the top of Pine Cone Ridge to allow skiers and riders the opportunity to ski into Thaynes Canyons at Park City via gated ski access or to the Iron Mountain area at Canyons through new trails that will be created from Pine Cone Ridge.

· Upgrade of King Con and Motherlode Lifts at Park City: The King Con Lift will be upgraded from a four-person to a six-person, high-speed detachable chairlift and will increase lift capacity to this very popular ski pod. The Motherlode Lift will be upgraded from a fixed-grip triple to a four-person, high-speed detachable chairlift, also increasing lift capacity.

· New Snow Hut Restaurant, Upgrades to Summit House Restaurant at Park City and Expansion of Red Pine Lodge Restaurant at Canyons: The plan calls for building a completely new Snow Hut restaurant at the base of the Silverlode Lift and next to the Park City terminal for the Interconnect Gondola, with 500 indoor seats and a top-of-the-line kitchen and culinary experience. The plan also includes an upgrade to the "scramble" area inside the Summit House restaurant to improve the flow of diners and increase seats. At Canyons, the Red Pine Restaurant will be renovated to accommodate an additional 250 indoor seats.

· Snowmaking: The plan features additional snowmaking on two trails in the Iron Mountain area of Canyons which will become increasingly central ski terrain given its proximity to the Interconnect Gondola.

· "Catch Up" Improvements: The plan also includes almost $5 million of "catch up" maintenance and upgrades at Park City, given the lack of spending at the resort over the past few years. This "catch up" maintenance spending is in addition to the normal annual maintenance capital for the two resorts of $5 million, which will be undertaken this year as well.

· Vail files paperwork to build PCMR-Canyons gondola [Park Record]
· Vail Will Spend $50 Million to Create Biggest Ski Area in USA [Curbed Ski]
· Vail Plans to Connect PCMR and Canyons in Summer 2015 [Curbed Ski]
· Breaking: Vail Resorts Buys Park City Mountain Resort [Curbed Ski]
· What Vail's Purchase of Park City Means for Skiers This Year [Curbed Ski]
· UPDATED: What's New at Ski Areas in 2014-2015 [Curbed Ski]
· Which Ski Resort Has The Most Skiing in North America? [Curbed Ski]