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Updated: Park City Mountain Resort Sues Canyons Owner Talisker; ‘May Be Forced To Close’

Park City Mountain Resort

A significant dispute between Park City Mountain Resort and Canyons Resort owner Talisker Land Holdings, LLC, has bubbled over the top. So much so that PCMR General Manager Jenni Smith said an agreement must be reached or settled or “we may be forced to close.”

At issue is PCMR’s continuing right to “use land occupied by some of Park City Mountain Resort’s chairlifts and runs. On December 27, 2011, Talisker Land Holdings, LLC advised Park City Mountain Resort that it deemed that the Resort’s right to use the land expired, and that Park City Mountain Resort would need to vacate the premises unless the Resort entered in to a new agreement for the use of the land.” That is how PCMR described the situation in a news statement. 

Smith’s comment was made on the front page of a new website, supportpcmr.com. “Simply put, if we lose this suit, or an agreement isn’t reached, Park City Mountain Resort will be forced to close,” she wrote.

The PCMR news statement said: “Principals of Park City Mountain Resort and Talisker met repeatedly in 2009, 2010, and 2011 to discuss multiple property transactions, business opportunities and infrastructure investments, including the future lift connection between Park City Mountain Resort and Canyons Resort, a Talisker property. 

“In the Summer of 2011, Park City Mountain Resort paid its annual fee for the use of the land, which was accepted by Talisker, and invested $7 million in infrastructure upgrades throughout the Resort. 

“The growth and success of Park City Mountain Resort is 100 percent attributable to the investment, the hard work and dedication of our management and entire staff of 1,200 employees and more than 400 volunteers,” continued Smith. “We’re going to fight as long as it takes to keep Park City Mountain Resort locally owned and locally operated.”

According to a complaint filed in the Third Judicial District Court (Summit County), “plaintiffs sue the defendants to prevent them from interfering with the continued operation of the Resort and from attempting to shut the Resort down.”

A Q&A section on the “supportpcmr” website noted that the resort will continue operations through the end of the current season. It also noted that they cannot say “for certain” if the resort will open for the 2012-13 season.

PCMR officials say they do not know what Talisker wants. “We have tried to negotiate new terms for our right to use the land. We don’t know what the developer has to gain by forcing this stalemate. 

“We will continue to own and control all the base facilities, parking lots, lifts and water rights for the resort. Our desire is that the dispute will be resolved quickly for the benefit of our employees who bear the brunt of uncertainty and for the benefit of the community as well.”

Talisker released the following statement late Friday afternoon:

"We have not reviewed PCMR's complaint in detail as of yet. PCMR's lease of Talisker's land expired in 2011. Talisker has offered PCMR new lease terms, and the parties have been in discussions regarding such new lease terms, which are subject to an agreement of confidentiality. We had hoped to reach terms on the new lease that would be fair to both parties. Unfortunately it appears that PCMR is attempting to use litigation to better its position, and avoid reaching a mutually fair outcome. At no time in these negotiations has Talisker contemplated or threatened to close Park City Mountain. We believed the negotiations were continuing and we are disappointed by PCMR's action today. Talisker will have no further comment at this time."

What It Means: This appears to be a serious dispute and SnoCountry.com will follow the situation as moves along.

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