Vail Resorts will make more than $50 million worth of upgrades to Park City Mountain Resort (PCMR) for the 2015-16 ski season. The plan will connect PCMR and Canyons resort and create a single ski area with more than 7,300 acres of skiable terrain.
Topping the makeover is an eight-passenger, high-speed gondola from the base of the existing Silverlode Lift at Park City to the Flatiron Lift at Canyons. The gondola will also have an unloading station at the top of Pine Cone Ridge, to allow skiers and riders 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.
In addition, the King Con Lift will be upgraded from a quad to a high-speed spx-pack detachable chairlift, and the Motherlode Lift will be upgraded from a fixed-grip triple to a detachable quad.
“The plan was based on feedback from guests and the local community as well as discussions with the senior operating teams at the two resorts,” said Blaise Carrig, president of the mountain division for Vail Resorts.
Margo Christiansen, senior manager of communications, says Vail anticipates a smooth approval process for the upgrades. “We have been putting in a tremendous amount of time and resources towards the planning and design of the improvements and have been working closely with city and county officials to understand what our approval processes looks like,” she said.
The plan also calls for building a new restaurant at the base of the Silverlode Lift and next to the Park City terminal for the Interconnect Gondola, with 500 indoor seats.
At Canyons, the Red Pine Restaurant will be renovated to accommodate an additional 250 indoor seats. Vail will also add 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.
Finally, the plan also includes almost $5 million for “catch up” maintenance and upgrades at Park City.
For the 2015-16 ski season, the company intends to operate the two resorts as one unified branded experience under the name “Park City Mountain Resort.” The Canyons base area will be renamed “Canyons at Park City.”