Aspen Skiing Co’s Pandora’s ski lift and terrain proposal to be tabled again

Staff report
Aspen Skiing Co. proposed a terrain expansion and new chairlift in the Pandora's area of Aspen Mountain.
Courtesy image

The proposal to expand Aspen Mountain’s ski operations by adding terrain and a chairlift in the area known as Pandora’s is slated to be tabled by the Pitkin County commissioners again Wednesday.

The delay is being sought by Aspen Skiing Co. to provide more time to refine the proposal.

“We have been refining our proposed plan, researching and gathering additional data and information in support of it, and considering amendments or alternative for submission to the county and consideration by the Planning Commission, before returning to the (county commissioners) with substantive proposals,” Skico said in a statement. “We’d hoped to submit materials to county staff by now, but the coronavirus pandemic has disrupted and delayed our efforts. We’ll proceed as quickly as we can given the constraints of home sheltering and social distancing.”

The commissioners’ also tabled the hearing in January. Suzanne Wolff, assistant director of the Pitkin County Community Development Department, said staff would recommend tabling the issue for another three months.

The county commissioners were deadlocked Aug. 27 on a critical rezoning of land necessary for the expansion. Skico asked the county to rezone 132 acres from Rural and Remote to Ski-Recreation and rezone another 35 acres from Agriculture Residential to Ski-Rec.

Commissioners Steve Child and Kelly McNicholas Kury opposed the rezoning. Commissioners Greg Poschman and George Newman supported it. Commissioner Patti Clapper recused herself because her son-in-law works for Skico.

Child suggested that Skico could reconfigure the alignment of the proposed Pandora’s chairlift to avoid changing the Rural and Remote Zoning. Skico officials were hesitant to go that route because the cost of adding the lift would yield only a small amount of terrain. It is unknown what direction their refinements are taking.


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