Now that this ski season is closing down, Park City closes after April 15th, things are really heating up at Park. Park City Mountain Resort has sued Talisker Land Holdings earlier this month over renegotiation of a long-term lease that expired in 2011. Talisker is a major landowner of PCMR, along with other property in the greater Park City area.
Adding another aspect, Talisker also operates neighboring Canyons resort, a major rival of the neighboring PCMR. Talisker is no stranger to resort controversy, as it outmaneuvered Vail Resorts to purchased Canyons in 2007, with Vail unsuccessfully suing to prevent the sale. But Talisker hasn’t learned much about operating neighboring ski resorts in a collaborative fashion, as Vail does with its handful of ski areas in Colorado.
PCMR has quickly taken the offensive, launching the website supportPCMR.com. The home page states: “Simply put, if we lose this suit, or an agreement isn’t reached, Park City Mountain Resort will be forced to close.” Canyons Managing Director Mike Goar, who is also the Talisker spokesman for the dispute, said the company was “shocked” over the lawsuit, and considers the lease negotiations as ongoing.
Some locals speculate that the controversy actually arises from the push to connect the neighboring ski resorts in the state – a concept gaining more serious discussion at higher levels than ever before. The lawsuit may be a maneuver to brake the forward momentum towards connectivity between the resorts.