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Jumbo Glacier Resort finally approved?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

After more than 20 years the BC government has approved a plan to build Jumbo Glacier ski resort in Lower BC.

 

Year round glacier skiing could be in our future --- summer skiing that will put Mt Hood to shame. Could open as early as 2013/14 season (with Gondola and T-bar lift), and when complete, 3 times the skiable acres as Panorama, 23 lifts, at a total cost of $1 billion.

 

 

Quote:
The completed resort on a 5,965 hectare piece of land 57 kilometres west of Invermere in the Purcell Mountains will be roughly one-tenth the size of Whistler. It will include 23 lifts, a 3,000 metre-high gondola and be open for year round skiing.

 

 

More: http://www.calgaryherald.com/travel/approves+Jumbo+Glacier+resort/6334332/story.html


Edited by spknmike - 3/21/12 at 1:30pm
post #2 of 12
3,000 meters! That's huge!
post #3 of 12

1/10th the size of whistler, that's small

post #4 of 12

Still lots of local opposition to the resort including one native band for and one against. Panorama Ski Resort is about 20 miles away and is not doing very well and was sold last year by Intrawest to local business people.

 

If it does get built there will be 5500 vert. feet in winter and 2300 vert. feet in summer on 2 glaciers. They plan a smallish village with 5500 beds at build out and that would suggest to me about 350,000 to 450,000 skiers visits per year, more counting the year round skiing.

Another problem is that B.C. really doesn't need more ski areas, it needs more skiers. Both Revelstoke and Kicking Horse, B.C.s newest ski areas, lose money and have sagging real estate sales.

post #5 of 12

Huh???

 

"Costello said the final product will only be one-third of the size of Panorama, even though the ski hill is expected to be three times larger."

post #6 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanoT View Post

Panorama Ski Resort is about 20 miles away and is not doing very well and was sold last year by Intrawest to local business people.

 

Another problem is that B.C. really doesn't need more ski areas, it needs more skiers. Both Revelstoke and Kicking Horse, B.C.s newest ski areas, lose money and have sagging real estate sales.


Yep... add to that the fact it's about four hours from the closest major airport and population center (Calgary), and it's Revelstoke debacle redux.

 

Kicking Horse was also sold this year, after quietly being on the block for years.

 


Edited by exracer - 3/21/12 at 11:00pm
post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by opimian View Post

1/10th the size of whistler, that's small



I think it is the resort/village area.

post #8 of 12

I'm all in favor of the Glacier project. Seems like it might suffer from the lack of a nearby airport, but if the developers want to try, go for it. "If you build it they will come."


Edited by CUontheslopes13 - 3/22/12 at 2:10pm
post #9 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanoT View Post

B.C. really doesn't need more ski areas, it needs more skiers. Both Revelstoke and Kicking Horse, B.C.s newest ski areas, lose money and have sagging real estate sales.


Yes. While the idea of year-round lift-served skiing might fill some passing fantasy, most skiers in North America already think most of BC is too far away, and Jumbo wouldn't change that.

 

I think it's unlikely Jumbo will get built, simply because the economics aren't right. The developers won't be able to get financing.

 

I don't know if there is some possibility of provincial government financing or loan guarantees. If there is, it would be unfortunate, since it opens up the possibility (some might say probability) that the developers will get the government support, build a lift and a base lodge, operate for some minimal amount of time, declare bankruptcy, and walk away with whatever they've been able to put in their pockets.

 

With the economics so obviously wrong, I suspect a scam.
 

 

post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CUontheslopes13 View Post

I'm all in favor of the Glacier project. Seems like it might suffer from the lack of a nearby airport, but if the developers want to try, go for it. "If you build it they will come."


Spokane (GEG) is 4 hours to Invermere. Cranbrook is 1.5 hours (direct Delta flights from SLC).

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jhcooley View Post


Yes. While the idea of year-round lift-served skiing might fill some passing fantasy, most skiers in North America already think most of BC is too far away, and Jumbo wouldn't change that.

 

I think it's unlikely Jumbo will get built, simply because the economics aren't right. The developers won't be able to get financing.

 

I don't know if there is some possibility of provincial government financing or loan guarantees. If there is, it would be unfortunate, since it opens up the possibility (some might say probability) that the developers will get the government support, build a lift and a base lodge, operate for some minimal amount of time, declare bankruptcy, and walk away with whatever they've been able to put in their pockets.

 

With the economics so obviously wrong, I suspect a scam.
 

 


I thought it was to be funded by private investors?

 

post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by spknmike View Post

I thought it was to be funded by private investors?

 



That's supposedly the idea, but that doesn't prevent those investors from going to the taxpayers for some kind of support if they think they can get it. Loans, loan guarantees, even bailouts after they get into trouble. "Well, we've got three-quarters of a chairlift. If you want those tourist dollars coming into the province, you need to help us finish it up..." Look what happened with the Olympics in Vancouver.

 

post #12 of 12

I have some additional concerns to the ones I have already posted.

 

How cold will it be riding lifts at 11,000 + ft in Dec. Jan. and Feb. in mountains that are this far north? Most western Canada resorts top out at around 7,000 ft with a few at 8,000 ft. The only people skiing at 11,000 ft in Canada are riding in a warm helicopter. Should be great in July and August.

 

Most master plans are overly optimistic pie in the sky because it is easier to shrink a plan down the road than it is to expand the plan, this one is probably not an exception. The plan calls for 23 lifts at build out with 5,500 beds. IMO 5,500 beds will not supply enough skiers to justify the cost of building and operating 23 lifts.

 

The original driving force behind Jumbo is Oberto Orberti an architect with no ski industry experience. 10 years in to the Jumbo project he realized that it wasn't going to happen any time soon so he shifted to developing Kicking Horse Mountain Resort with a Dutch construction company investor, also with no ski industry experience, and set up a 3900 vertical foot gondola with no mid terminal. This has caused early season problems when there is no snow at the base but lots up top that can't be accessed. KHMR has been operating for 12 years without making a profit and was sold this year to Resorts of the Canadian Rockies, presumably at a bargain price.

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