Squaw Valley pulls plug on ‘Timberline Twister’ roller coaster project

Kevin MacMillan and Margaret Moran
Sierra Sun


This story has been updated from an original version published earlier Friday. The story indicates that the proposed “Timberline Twister” was a project separate from the current 101.5-acre development proposal for the mountain. The Sun regrets the error.

OLYMPIC VALLEY, Calif. — The “Timberline Twister” roller coaster is no longer planned to be a future amenity at Squaw Valley.

In a Thursday letter to Placer County, Squaw Valley Executive Vice President Mike Livak said the resort was pulling plans for the coaster “due to business considerations and capital priorities.”

“Given the uncertainty of our future capital priorities, withdrawal of the application (for the coaster) is more appropriate than suspension of processing,” Livak wrote in the letter, obtained Friday by the Sierra Sun.

When asked to elaborate in a follow-up interview Friday afternoon, Livak said he couldn’t provide more specific information.

The coaster, which was in the environmental review process when pulled, was intended to provide an additional amenity to existing guests, Livak said. It was proposed to be built between the Squaw Valley snowmaking building and the intersection of the Red Dog and Far East Express lifts and would have featured a 3,000-foot linear track.

“We’re glad the proposed roller coaster was stopped in its tracks,” said Tom Mooers, of the regional conservation group Sierra Watch, in a Friday statement to the Sierra Sun. “We need to make sure each project fits into a broad vision for Squaw Valley in order to best safeguard the values of the entire Tahoe Sierra.”

Livak said it’s unknown if Squaw Valley would propose a similar project in the future. In the event it does, the resort will submit a new initial project application and environmental impact questionnaire.

The coaster would have been separate from the resort’s current proposed 101.5-acre capital improvement plan that aims to develop an all-season mountain resort community by adding amenities and more lodging options. Click here learn more about that project.

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