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Park City Proposes a $25-Million Bond for Land That Isn't Up For Sale

Renai Bodley
Utah Open Lands hopes to purchase Bonanza Flats for preservation.

Utah Open Lands supports the $25 million bond to purchase Bonanza Flat – the 13-hundred acres of land at the top of Guardsman’s Pass. Open Lands Director Wendy Fisher said the preserved property will be enjoyed by not only Summit County residents, but Wasatch and Salt Lake county residents as well.

Bonanza Flats caught the eye of Utah Open Lands when they were working to preserve the Snake Creek Canyon – just over the pass in Wasatch County. Fisher said they’re now working with other organizations who share their vision.

“Interestingly – all of the impacts from development in Bonanza Flats, I think, would be felt mostly by the park city community," Fisher said. "So we’re actually partnering with the Wasatch Back Country Alliance to hold an event to get Wasatch Front and Wasatch Back people who don’t live in the immediate vicinity of the Park City city limits to help out by pledging their support for Bonanza should it become available for protection.”

Fisher said they’re also working with Summit Land Conservancy who are helping to publicize the bond so that they’re not a day late and a dollar short.

“Like so many open spaces that we’ve all tried to acquire and cherish – they’re not always available for purchase as open space," Fisher said. "But if you don’t have the funds when that opportunity becomes available, you can’t participate.”

Park City doesn’t even know if Bonanza Flats will be available for sale.  A high-end development company is reportedly interested in the acreage, which is now owned by the lenders who foreclosed on the property once owned by the Talisker Corporation. A purchase price has yet to be determined but Fisher said by beginning the process now, those in the position of making the purchase a reality, will have no doubt as to the devotion of the communities it would serve.