Julia Mancuso opinion: I support the Squaw village redevelopment | SierraSun.com

Julia Mancuso opinion: I support the Squaw village redevelopment

Julia Mancuso
Opinion

Draped in an American flag, Squaw Valley's Julia Mancuso was all smiles after winning bronze in the super-combined in Sochi, Russia, during the 2014 Winter Olympics.

I want to voice my support for the Village at Squaw Valley Redevelopment plan. We have some of the best ski terrain on the planet, but the base of our mountain needs to be updated and completed in order for the resort to stay relevant and compete with other sought after mountain destinations.

I've been lucky to experience many resorts around the world; most far larger than Squaw, and with significant amenities that allow athletes and their families to ski, stay and recreate.

Squaw Valley must reinvest to remain competitive with these other great resorts. We'll keep raising Olympians — it's what we do here — but wouldn't it be great if we were able to keep them at home to train, close to family and friends?

We have an amazing opportunity to host the Women's World Cup at Squaw next season. It's something I'm incredibly excited about! Not only will it be great to entertain world-class athletes and show them all that the mountain has to offer, we'll have the ability to showcase Squaw Valley to the world.

In the future, if we want to continue to attract World Cup and other high caliber events, investment in additional on-site lodging, training facilities and amenities that aren't weather dependent will prove to be crucial to Squaw's success. That said, the time to invest in Squaw Valley is now, and the current plan is great.

So much of the plan includes community benefits that we all will enjoy. We'll have new hiking and bike trails, and Squaw Creek will be rehabilitated and become a place to hang with friends. There will be gathering spaces for concerts and meetings, new cafés and restaurants. We'll have new alternative fuel shuttles to get us to the hill easier, and we can feel good taking them, knowing that we're doing our part to improve air quality.

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We have one of the best mountains in the world; it is still by far my favorite place on the planet. Now we have the opportunity to make everything just a little bit better! We need to make the village more family friendly, and ready to welcome the next generation of Olympians. It's time for Squaw's future to live up to its glorious past.

Please join me in supporting the Village redevelopment.

Julia Mancuso is a Squaw Valley native and a four-time winter Olympic medalist in alpine skiing.