Subdivision gets OK to link with Northstar lift |

Subdivision gets OK to link with Northstar lift

Sun staff report

With approval from Placer County secured, the Martis Camp subdivision is set to connect with Northstar-at-Tahoe’s Lookout Mountain ski run.

Last month the Placer County Planning Commission unanimously approved the DMB/Highlands Group’s application for a lift and trail connection from Northstar’s Lookout Mountain into the private Martis Camp development, which is adjacent to the gated Lahontan community.

With Placer’s approval, construction is planned to start this spring with targeted completion for the 2008/09 ski season said Mark Johnson with DMB/Highlands.

“We also have an eye toward completion of temporary base facilities for Martis Camp Club members with paved access from Martis Camp to the extended lift in the same time frame,” Johnson said in a statement.

The Lookout lift will increase from 2,822 linear feet to 5,128 linear feet with an increase in vertical drop from 1,247 feet to 1,722 feet, according to Northstar and DMB Highlands. Three Lookout Mountain trail extensions as well as the addition of a new intermediate trail to the east of the Lookout Mountain lift will be added.

Martis Camp, called Siller Ranch during the approval process, is a 2,177-acre subdivision with 650 home lots, an 18-hole golf course and various other amenities such as a 50,000-square-foot lodge that sits near the base of Northstar’s Lookout Mountain.

The gated community was one part of the pitched battle over development in the surrounding Martis Valley. A settlement with conservation groups in 2006, however, saw DMB/Highlands Group eliminate plans for the 280-acre, 75-home Hopkins Ranch subdivision and its nine-hole golf course along Schaffer Mill Road and Highway 267.

In addition to dropping the plans for Hopkins Ranch, the land was promised for open space and affordable housing.

The settlement also included a transfer fee agreement that will generate $72 million over 25 years from lots sold in Martis Camp to fund affordable housing and open space purchases.

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