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Deer Valley and Park City Mayor commit to public outreach as planners evaluate new Snow Park development

Park City Municipal
Deer Valley Resort recently submitted revised plans for its Snow Park development.

A meeting between Park City Mayor Nann Worel, council member Jeremy Rubell and Deer Valley residents was set for a casual Q and A last Saturday. But it quickly became a grilling session about the proposed Snow Park development when more than 100 homeowners turned out.

Lakeside Deer Valley resident Pat O’Connell was one of those who attended the meeting with a crowd that packed the Deer Valley Café’s lakeside deck.

“They were expecting, you know, 10,15, 20 people,” O’Connell said. “And instead, they got 100-plus property owners who said something like, ‘well, you know, we're just here to have coffee and chat.’ So, this sort of murmur went up from the crowd... ‘no, we're not here to chat. We're here to talk about this Snow Park plan.’ Apparently, there was a new plan that had been delivered to the planning commission last week, which both the mayor and the council member said that they hadn't seen so they couldn't comment on it.”

While O’Connell hasn’t seen the newest set of plans, he said the proposed road vacation – which gives up public use of the road where buses currently pick up and drop off at the resort - is still part of the plans and Saturday’s crowd he said isn’t happy about it.

According to Park City Planning Director Gretchen Milliken, her office has received the revised plans and is evaluating them. The plans she says focus on circulation. The transit center and base development are in the same location as the first proposal, which require that the road be vacated.

“Currently, we're reviewing it internally, and then we will share our feedback with Deer Valley. And, depending on our analysis, things might change, they might be going back to the drawing board; this might be something that we would move forward with. We're not at that point right now. We're, we've just recently received it so, it's very difficult for us to discuss how you know, because we just haven't had that time to review it.”

Deer Valley Resort project manager Jake Romney spoke on Saturday, but according to O’Connell he wasn’t well received and was accused of lying in the submission to Park City by claiming the Snow Park plan has support from residents and HOAs, when it does not.

Romney was not available for a phone interview with KPCW. Instead, Deer Valley Senior Communications Manager Emily Summers responded by email saying the resort’s representatives who attended Saturday’s gathering heard the neighbors’ questions and concerns about the Snow Park development project.

As the proposal works through the public process, she wrote, Deer Valley will continue its neighborhood outreach and will be scheduling many opportunities for neighbors to attend presentations that outline the current plans and traffic studies. She said the resort will offer opportunities for continued conversations with its team.

She added that anyone interested in attending a meeting with Deer Valley about the project is encouraged to submit their contact information at deervalley.com/snowpark.

Mayor Nann Worel told KPCW she too heard the neighbors’ concerns and is confident that the planning staff and planning commission will carefully study the traffic flow plan. Further, she promised public hearings before the council takes any official action on Deer Valley Resort’s plans.

“And I think what it showed me is, certainly the amount of passion and the amount of concern around this one. As I told Gretchen Milliken, as this moves in front of the planning commission for public input, I think it's really important that we make sure that we have a big enough room that everybody can come in,” Worel said. “Council chambers doesn't hold that many people. And so, my suggestion would be move it to the Santy - just to make sure everybody can get in and feel like they're heard.”

Worel added she appreciated that concerned residents took the time to come out on Saturday and even though they were caught off guard by the large turnout, the council wants to hear from them.