Tahoe Biltmore redevelopment: Deadline passes, no legal action against TRPA approval
North Lake Tahoe Bonanza
CRYSTAL BAY, Nev. and#8212; The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency’s approval of the Tahoe Biltmore redevelopment project will not face legal challenges as the 60-day time period allotted for entities to file suit questioning the governing board’s April 27 decision has passed.
The window passed at midnight, June 27, said Brian Helm, project manager for Boulder Bay, in a Wednesday press release.
In a follow-up interview, Helm expressed confidence that no future legal issues will serve as an impediment to Boulder Bay’s progress.
and#8220;When you’re dealing with a project such as this, any legal challenge is typically brought against the regulatory agency responsible for approval,and#8221; Helm said.
He further said he was not surprised by the absence of legal action.
and#8220;It was a long process, during which we made a lot of compromises and listened to the concerns of the public,and#8221; he said.
and#8220;Obviously, we could not respond to absolutely everything, but we included many environmental benefits and benefits to the community.and#8221;
Amanda Royal, spokeswoman for the League to Save Lake Tahoe, an outspoken critic of the project during its four-year approval process, said her organization considered filing a lawsuit, but ultimately favored allocating resources elsewhere.
and#8220;We realized that our efforts would be far better spent seeking improvements on regional and local planning, such as the city of South Lake Tahoe general plan,and#8221; Royal said.
The league filed a federal suit against South Lake Tahoe on June 17, saying the city’s newly approved planning regulations allow for too much development at the expense of the lake’s clarity and scenic beauty, according to published reports.
Political climate relating to Boulder Bay and#8212; particularly a Nevada state legislature bill (Senate Bill 271) that called for the Silver State’s withdrawal from TRPA if certain changes are not made to the compact and#8212; made a legal challenge difficult, Royal said.
and#8220;We are keenly aware of the new political situation in Nevada, and the role that the Boulder Bay project played in the passage of SB 271, a bill that may undo 40 years of bistate cooperation to protect Lake Tahoe,and#8221; she said.
Royal reaffirmed the league’s position that the scale of the project remains too large.
TRPA officials expressed satisfaction Wednesday that the deadline for legal challenges passed.
and#8220;With such broad support by the TRPA governing board on the Boulder Bay decision, it is encouraging that the project is not facing litigation,and#8221; said Jeff Cowen, TRPA spokesman.
and#8220;The project is bringing much-needed environmental improvements through redevelopment of a heavily disturbed site and#8212; just what TRPA is calling for in the Regional Plan Update.and#8221;