Many North Ogden residents upset over possible major expansion of ski resort

NORTH OGDEN, Utah — A developer hopes to bring big changes to the Nordic Valley ski resort.

Earlier this year, Mountain Capital Partners took over management of the resort. If they are granted a special use permit by the U.S. Forest Service, they plan to expand to nearly 3,000 acres.

“Quaint resorts are very difficult to be financially viable,” said James Coleman, CEO of Mountain Capital Partners and Nordic Valley. “It’s time to take it to the next level and become a real player in the ski business here in Utah.”

The plan calls for the construction of 12 new ski lifts, the addition of several ski runs and a gondola to shuttle skiers from North Ogden and Eden to the slopes.

“There's been talk of a direct access lift from the valley floor to the mountains for decades, but it’s never happened,” Coleman said.

But not everyone is on board with the plan. Some longtime residents of both North Ogden and Eden believe the project is too big and will bring with it too many negative impacts.

“I don’t want it to be Park City,” said lifelong North Ogden resident Christopher Heiner. “If I wanted to live in Park City, I’d move to Park City.”

Heiner is concerned about traffic, cost of living increases and the gondola obstructing the view of the mountain.

“It would ruin the skyline. I love our unobstructed view of the mountains,” Heiner said.

Others worry the resort, which would expand to accommodate 11,000 guests per day, would cause a strain on the area’s infrastructure.

“My biggest concern is water,” said Jeff Stokes who has lived in the Liberty/Eden area for more than two decades. “It’s a huge undertaking and there are significant impacts.”

Coleman listened to residents’ input for more than two hours at an informal public meeting, Monday.

Another meeting is planned for Dec. 4 at 6 p.m. at Snowcrest Junior High School in Eden.

The development must gain approval from the U.S. Forest Service and also be subjected to an environmental study.

Coleman is optimistic those hurdles can be cleared, allowing construction to begin by April 2020.