Residents sound off on potential summer use at Diamond Peak
July 17, 2013
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Incline Village resident Nancy Manter is uncertain about the potential for increased summer use at Diamond Peak.
"I am not sure," said Manter, who lives in the Tyrolian Village subdivision that neighbors the ski resort. "I live right up there and it's going to affect the traffic coming in and out, and I'm concerned for these people who live right on the edge for the noise."
Others, meanwhile, are supporting the idea.
"The possibilities of summer activities, I think is a wonderful idea because this is an under-utilized resource," said Gloria Brimm, an Incline resident whose stepson operates the resort's mid-mountain Snowflake Lodge through Brimm's Catering Company. "… I think it's a good thing that we're really taking a deep look at this."
Manter and Brimm were among roughly 100 residents and officials who attended an open house Tuesday at the Diamond Peak Base Lodge regarding the resort's master plan update.
Since opening 47 years ago under the name Ski Incline, the Incline Village General Improvement District-owned resort has primarily provided winter recreation, with limited summer business consisting of infrequently scheduled special events.
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A new master plan — which hasn't been updated since 1987 — would serve as a blueprint for future development.
On Tuesday, officials presented suggestions for summer and multi-season uses and activities that could be part of the new plan, which include:
Children and adult programs such as skill classes like archery and camps,
Summer events such as festivals, weddings and reunions; and
Summer activities such as races, mountain biking, a bike pump track, canopy tours, zip lines, stargazing, horseback riding, disc golf, an alpine coaster/slide, paintball and others.
Incline resident Jim Nowlin said if summer operations are done right, it would be great.
"Very low noise impact, relatively small groups, so it doesn't impact the homeowners around here," he said. "That's the key thing."
Incline resident Margaret Martini, however, has concerns beyond potential impacts to homeowners.
"I'd like to know what they're thinking in cost," she said. "I'd like to know what they're thinking in environmental impact, and I'd like to know what they're thinking in long-term goals."
Assisting Diamond Peak and IVGID in the master plan process is the SE Group, a mountain resort planning firm. The group is conducting market research and site analysis, among other services, for a fee of approximately $100,000, said Brad Wilson, general manager at Diamond Peak.
"Nothing is proposed right now, so these are all just preliminarily ideas that we're exploring to see what people are interested in, what makes sense from the community perspective, what makes sense from a visitation perspective, tourism perspective," said Melissa Sherburne, SE Group community planner.
A Diamond Peak Master Plan survey will aid in that effort, said Claire Humber, director of resort planning and design for SE Group.
"This is our guide," she said. "This is the way we're going to capture what the community thinks."
Based on survey results and feedback collected at Tuesday's meeting, potential summer opportunities and ways to maximize existing winter business will be narrowed down, Sherburne said. Feasibility in terms of cost and site constraints will also be taken into account.
Then, a second public meeting will be held this fall — date to be determined — to present a draft master plan, with a final version expected by October.
"It will come down to what the community wants, what the site can support and a profitable operation," Wilson said.