Sunday, August 10, 2008

Mountain Creek Ski Resort Pedestrian Village Finally A Go

After years of plans to construct the Mountain Creek Ski Resort pedestrian village in Vernon, it looks like things are finally underway after the unanimous approval by the Vernon Planning Board last week on Wednesday the 28th. This is a decision that has been seven years in the making, as a string of lawsuits from an environmental group and state officials prevented any building to be done on Hamburg Mountain, which was the original location outlined for the village.

“We had a different master plan in 2000,” says Jeff Patterson, the ski resort’s director of development who expects the project to be done in the next ten years.

The 20,000 square-foot-village had actually received a lot of flak prior to this approval, mainly due to its new location, which will be right along route 94 next to the Appalachian Hotel. But township engineer, Louis Kneip, says this isn’t too much of a concern right now: “These problems have been rectified,” says Mr. Kneip, “What we’ve settled on [is that] people are directed to a pedestrian bridge.”

This huge undertaking, set to cost $625 million, has a 20 year protection period for the project, and is set to include 1810 resort/lodging hotel units, 100,000 square feet of commercial space for restaurants and various shops, and also 100,000 square feet of conference space. All of this designed by Intrawest, the world leader in destination resorts and adventure travel.

And according to the resort’s fiscal consultant, Richard Reading, the construction of this new resort would open up about 430 new jobs in Vernon, most of them construction. And there will be an estimated yearly income of 1.3 million to the township, $5.9 to the Vernon Township School District, and 1.7 million to the country, making it a huge money maker and also like nothing else currently on the East Coast.

Look for construction to begin in the next few months.

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