TAHOE, Calif. — Homewood Mountain Resort has been selected as a finalist by the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) for its prestigious Golden Eagle award. The annual award is NSAA’s highest environmental honor and recognizes exemplary environmental performance in the ski resort industry. The winners will be announced at NSAA’s annual convention on May 1 in Palm Springs, Calif.
Homewood has been selected as one of three resorts in the “Small Ski Area” category — resorts with fewer than 200,000 skier visits annually. The other two finalists are Beaver Valley Ski Club in Canada and Mt. Abram Resort in Maine.
Ironically, the honor comes at a time when JMA Ventures, LLC, which owns Homewood Mountain Resort, is being sued by other environmental groups that oppose the resort’s planned redevelopment.
“We actively embrace our responsibility to be a good steward and community partner,” said Art Chapman, founder of JMA Ventures, LLC. “Homewood’s goal is to build the most environmentally progressive resort in the Lake Tahoe region and set a high bar for the ski industry as a whole. We are honored that the NSAA has acknowledged our efforts with this nomination.”
Homewood is being recognized for its commitment to innovative watershed management and the water-quality monitoring work performed resort-wide over several years. Since 2006, Homewood and parent company JMA Ventures, LLC, have been committed to reducing sediment runoff from the Homewood watershed with highly successful results.
Homewood partnered with local company Integrated Environmental Restoration Services, Inc. (IERS) to develop a watershed improvement plan focused on identifying key erosion sources throughout the watershed, prioritizing on-mountain restoration efforts and directly measuring sediment reductions.
The project has resulted in the removal and restoration of nearly 300,000 square feet (nearly 4 miles) of unpaved on-mountain roads. In addition, through the development of a new, peer-reviewed stream monitoring method developed by the project team for small alpine watersheds, a watershed-scale sediment reduction of 41 percent was measured between 2010 and 2011. The results earned Homewood a “Best in the Basin” award from the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency.
The tools and methods developed at Homewood have been incorporated in a 300-page Watershed Management Guidebook that was recently published by project partner Integrated Environmental Restorative Services (IERS). The guidebook serves as a valuable resource for other ski resorts seeking to improve their watershed management results. Art Chapman and JMA Ventures are acknowledged for their “vision to raise the bar on what a ‘green’ ski resort could be … Homewood Mountain Resort has become a working laboratory for watershed management and research.”
The watershed work is part of an overall environmental mission at Homewood. In addition to a recycling program and multiple alternative transportation initiatives, future development at Homewood is designed to the LEED for Neighborhood Development Gold certification standard, one of the highest categories offered by the Leadership for Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Neighborhood Development Program.
More information regarding the Golden Eagle Award and on future plans at Homewood can be found at SkiHomewood.com.
Homewood Mountain Resort is one of California’s first winter recreation resorts. Offering a family-friendly atmosphere since 1961, Homewood continues to offer premier winter skiing and snowboarding with a focus on top level guest service and custom vacation packages. Homewood is accessible via Interstate 80 to California State Route 89, just 55 miles from Reno Tahoe International Airport. The resort’s parent company is San Francisco, California based JMA Ventures, LLC. JMA is a full service real estate investment firm, serving as managing member of over $500 million in existing projects.