Homewood resort expansion plans aired | SierraSun.com

Homewood resort expansion plans aired

Homewood developers took the next step in an expansion of the mountain resort this week.

The proposed expansion includes plans for the north side of the resort to add a hotel with up to 75 rooms, 56 condos, 12 workforce housing apartments, and 25,000 square feet of retail, while the south side could grow by up to 99 condominiums and 11 homes.

“The meeting was to give the public and the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Advisory Planning Commission a chance to comment on the scope of the environmental analysis,” said David Tirman, executive vice president with JMA Ventures.

Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Spokesman Dennis Oliver said the commission didn’t take any action, instead just giving input on what the environmental review should include.

“There was a fair number of people from Homewood attending who expressed concern over the size of the proposal,” Oliver said.

Susan R. Gearhart, a member of Friends of the West Shore, said she is among the project neighbors who take issue with the size of the proposed project.

“I think it’s much too massive. From Highway 89 looking up it goes up and up 108.5 feet,” Gearhart said.

She said she is also concerned with sound and light pollution from the project.

Tirman said as part of an environmental review, JMA Ventures will look at alternatives with lower density.

“It is definitely a balance between insuring an economically viable project and one that works within the landscape,” Tirman said. “The current project we believe is optimal for both the environment and from a financial standpoint.”

Another alternative the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency asked to be considered is one where development doesn’t happen on a gravel parking lot considered part of a stream environment zone, Oliver said, something the developer is hoping will be re-designated.

“We were making sure they have a plan alternative that does not depend on that going in their favor,” Oliver said.

The current plan calls for a structured parking deck where the gravel one now resides, Tirman said, and the developers already have plans to adjust the parking lot if the land isn’t rezoned.

“It’s been used for the last 20 years as parking so it’s up to the TRPA to determine whether or not the stream zone is still intact,” Tirman said.

The public will get another chance to provide input on the environmental review on Sept. 23 from 4 to 6 p.m. at Granlibakken.

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