Public hearing scheduled on Heavenly master plan
The agency that regulates development at Lake Tahoe will hold a public hearing Wednesday on proposed changes to Heavenly Mountain Resort’s master plan, which include several new lifts, an amphitheater and a restaurant.
The U.S. Forest Service opened public comment on the plan in May and has indicated it is leaning toward allowing the proposed changes, which first drew attention in 2003.
Perhaps most contentious among resident skiers and conservationists is a proposed high-speed lift at the resort’s quiet North Bowl.
Critics of the plan oppose more development in the Edgewood Creek watershed that contains North Bowl because they believe it is already degraded.
“The proposed North Bowl lift and trails would result in the cutting of over 230 old-growth trees and other erosion-causing disturbances on steep, fragile terrain, and disturbance of sensitive wetlands,” said John Friedrich, spokesman for the League to Save Lake Tahoe. The League is a 45-year-old non-profit with 4,000 members and the goal of “preventing further harm to Tahoe’s sensitive watershed.” It prints the “Keep Tahoe Blue” bumper stickers.
The League cites a 2004 Forest Service report which said the watershed had “poor” water quality.
Forest Service spokesman Rex Norman said more recent surveys indicate water quality has improved in the Edgewood Creek watershed. The Forest Service is charged with managing the public land which Heavenly leases.
The Forest Service will hold an informational workshop on Heavenly’s plan on the evening of July 6 at their office off Al Tahoe Boulevard in South Shore.
The League also opposes the new lifts because it believes they will increase traffic in Tahoe.
“More skiers and snowboarders drawn to the faster lifts and new ski runs means more cars in the Basin and more emissions,” Friedrich said.
n In other news, there will also be a public hearing on a zoning change in Placer County to add “government offices” to a residential area called Lake Forest Glen.
If you go
What: Hearing on Heavenly Master Plan, TRPA Governing Board meeting
When: Wednesday, 9:30 a.m.
Where: TRPA offices, 128 Market St., Stateline
Also on the agenda: Legal report on airport clear-cut; presentation on
proposed South Lake Tahoe Convention Center and opportunity for public comment; discussion of Homewood Mountain Resort land acquisition.