Another Jumbo ski resort for the Rockies?

A rendering of the resort (with accompanying airport) in the mountains next to Valemount

Plus, the dollar is crimping on your travel plans and industrial users glare at the waterline

Another resort in the Rockies
The gears have been put in motion for a 9,000-hectare ski resortwith four gondolas and 2,000 units—in the upper Columbia Valley, three hours north of Kamloops. On Friday, the proponents behind Valemount Glacier Destination formally submitted their proposal to the regional district, which will put it to public consultation over the summer. Spearheaded by resort designer Oberto Oberti, the man who designed nearby Kicking Horse and, this is important, Jumbo Glacier Resort, the proponents hope to sign an agreement with the province by next spring. 

The team that hopes to one day put ski-to-chairlift-to-powder is backed by Toronto developers Greg Marchant, involved in Revelstoke resort, and Hunter Milborne, the man affectionally referred to by Canadian Business as the “dean of condos.” As for Oberti, the veteran resort designer, he is fresh from a de-facto rejection in June of Jumbo by the Ministry of Environment. The company behind the project was told to reapply for an environmental certificate, effectively sending it back to the drawing board. And while the proposal at Valemount is half the size of Jumbo, and in a more remote part of the province with a more receptive community, the road could be rocky. As the developer admits in the project proposal: “there is an adverse cultural mindset against new ski resort projects from competition-averse industry participants and from the anti-development lobby.”

Summer plans
When a Canadian dollar gets you 75 cents U.S., a trip south of the border is about, well, three quarters as attractive as usual. According to a new survey from Insights West, 64 per cent of B.C. respondents said that the low dollar has had a medium-to-significant impact on their travel plans, while 14 per cent said that the dollar has had no impact. And B.C.ers, more than their Canadian counterparts, are more likely to stay in province this summer, as 57 per cent intended to travel in B.C., compared to the 46 per cent national average who plan on staying home.

Water troubles
An industrial-scale water user, Howe and Sound Pulp and Paper Mill, has been forced to halt operations—and lay off 171 workers, in part, due to falling water levels in the lake from which it draws water. The more important reason is the falling price of newsprint, which has led APP to shutter that part of its operations. A total of 335 people work at the paper mill owned, indirectly, by Asia Pulp & Paper. 

Correction: we originally wrote that APP had shuttered the HSPP mill temporarily. It has been closed permanently, and only in part due to water levels in the lake.