Park City, Utah To Become USA's Largest Ski Resort

3 April 2015
Read Time: 1.3 mins

Last week Vail Resorts finally received approval from the Park City Planning Commission to implement a planned $50 million of improvements to Park City ski resort, including a high-speed, two-way eight-seater gondola to link it to next door Canyons, creating a ski area with more than 2,954 hectares of terrain.

Plans to link the two resorts have been in the making for some time, since the former owners of Park City, Powdr Corp, missed the deadline for renewing their operating lease in 2011, and Vail Resorts, operator of 11 American ski areas including Canyons, stepped into the breach.

It took over three years to settle the resulting dispute, during which Powdr Corp threatened to close down the resort for the 2014/15 season by refusing Vail Resorts access to the Park City base area.

 Park City Ski Resort

However, the big beast finally won out, when Vail Resorts bought Park City for $182.5 million in September 2014.

The size of the new ski area comfortably beats American big hitters Big Sky in Montana (5,750 acres/2,327 hectares) and Vail in Colorado (5,289 acres/2,140 hectares) into second and third place. But Whistler in Canada (8,171 acres/3,307 hectares) retains the title of biggest resort in North America.

The two-way gondola in Park City creates a connected area in the same way as Les Arcs and La Plagne in France link to form the 425-kilometre Paradiski area – there are no connecting pistes.

Other resort improvements covered by Vail Resorts' $50 million spend include two upgraded chairlifts to increase capacity in busy sectors of the Park City ski area, a new mountain restaurant at Park City, increased capacity at existing restaurants in Park City and Canyons, and additional snowmaking in Canyons near the new gondola.

 Utah's beautiful Park City

Almost $5 million is reserved for “catch up maintenance and upgrades”, in addition to the normal maintenance funds, with Vail Resorts citing “lack of spending over the past few years” at Park City.

Powdr Corp still operates some well known American ski resorts, including Copper Mountain in Colorado and the biggest resort in the east, Killington in Vermont.

Vail Resorts also operates Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in California; and Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt Brighton in Michigan.
.........................................................................................................................................................

Visit your local Flight Centre or call 131 600 for more advice and the latest travel deals.

.........................................................................................................................................................

This article was written by Catherine Weakley from The Daily Telegraph and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Catherine Weakley

Catherine Weakley is deputy editor of Telegraph Ski and Snowboard. A late starter at 23, she worked her first season as a chalet host with only four weeks' skiing under her belt. She went on to work three more seasons as a resort manager and now skis and snowboards. She has a passion for the sartorial side of the snow.