Letter to the Editor: Squaw expansion would hurt business outside of Olympic Valley

The business model for the expansion of Squaw Valley appears to be to draw overnight guests currently staying in other lodging.

“Additional units and bedrooms would give resort-goers a chance to stay overnight, Hosea added, rather than them leaving, driving to other accommodations and returning the next day.” (Sierra Sun 1/25/2013).

Capturing these visitors will be aided by the fact that day parking will be expensive or off-site, greatly increasing the cost and inconvenience for visitors staying outside the valley and for locals. The water park and roller coaster are necessary for this business model to succeed, in order to give overnight visitors things to do in the valley in the summer.

While KSL’s economic analysis is claimed to show that the project is economically viable for KSL, it will clearly have a negative impact on rentals, restaurants and shops outside the valley. Current economic and demographic trends give no reason to expect that there will be enough new visitors in coming years to fill the beds at Squaw Valley without taking business away from surrounding communities.

We will be left with an enclave of the wealthy in Olympic Valley and increasingly derelict communities in Truckee and North Tahoe. The leadership of Truckee and the North Tahoe communities should be lobbying the Placer County Supervisors to deny this project.

Jack Kashtan


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