Letter: Overdeveloped Lake Tahoe in the works

To the community,

There are currently numerous large projects being planned that would forever change the Lake Tahoe Basin, destroying the natural beauty for future generations. The Lake Tahoe Basin is a national treasure, and we should band together to protect it from overdevelopment.

It is imperative that we preserve the wilderness areas so that generations to come can enjoy the natural scenery. In just one small area, Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows, the following projects are in the planning stages:

·       Approximately 94 acres in Squaw Valley to include 1,500 bedrooms and over 200,000 square feet of commercial development, including an indoor amusement park, all constructed over a 25-year building period – The Village at Squaw Valley project is planned by KSL Capitol Partners LLC.

·       A gondola from Squaw to Alpine, cutting across the Five Lakes Trail and the Granite Chief Wilderness – a project planned by KSL Capital Partners LLC, in cooperation with Troy Caldwell.

·       White Wolf development – 38 homes and supporting structures in Alpine Meadows – a project planned by Troy Caldwell.

·       Alpine Sierra Subdivision – a 38 home project planned by Chris Nelson of Capstone Partners LLC.

Can you imagine roads, houses and the grinding of an overhead gondola as you hike the Five Lakes Trail? Do we want future generations attending an indoor amusement park instead of enjoying the peaceful great outdoors? We must work to stop this development by private interests, motivated only by profits. This overdevelopment will destroy the very thing that has attracted people to Lake Tahoe. Let’s work together to keep natural areas for the enjoyment of future generations and for the wild animals whose habitats are rapidly diminishing.

If you are interested in helping, please contact Sierra Watch and Protect Granite Chief.

Judy Bruner, Tahoe resident

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    Comments (17)
    1. Irish Wahini says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      It is a lt of work to stop stupid development – but worth it. We have our work cut out in the South Shore, but empathize with the huge money you must fight in the North Shore. I would suggest getting in touch with Diane Feinstein’s office, who has championed issues at Lake Tahoe, and maybe Al Gore for his environmental input. Cushing used to build at Squaw Valley, and ask for permission after the fact…. according to news accounts Hang in there!

    2. Seriously? says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      Local government doesnt care about Tahoe, all they care about is building and making money. Its not why we moved here so many years ago. Something has to be done and all the locals have to get on board.

    3. Robin Smith says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      This ‘build’ it and deal with it later has been going on forever, anyone that wants to cut down a 100ft tall tree?? Ha! CHOP away…what will ‘they’ do? What can they do? FINE feel fine, fine away

      I’ve got more money than sense and do not give a**** about anything else so well, it’s done…deal with it. Can’t put 100ft trees back…can’t fix it now it’s done so move on. :)~


    4. Robin Smith says - Posted: November 3, 2015


      The ‘locals’ as you call them are outnumbered. The turnover continues…keep those ‘locals’ rolling over. Every two or three years the poor fools literally run out of town, bankrupt their small business’s, see to it that traffic is stopped with incessant construction, regulations and mandates etc…all coordinated to stymie small local business’s.

      Just look at the number of small business’s listed in the “Then and Now” series…quite a turnover.

      TIMESHARES and fractional residences as they are now known:)LOL…skew the vote on any matter that impedes the super agenda. No way to out vote these people. Do the numbers you statistic people.

      These people are from all over and while they may bring business to town they ought not be running the place.

      Sorry to inform you but MONEY talks and hard working normal family people get out of the way! MOVE ON

      Irish…who is Cushing and what did Cushing build in Squaw Valley?

    5. Atomic says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      Robin, I can’t seem to ever make sense of your rants, try as I might.

      To the author: There is plenty of rugged wilderness to be had here. Just don’t go looking for it near a ski resort……..hike 15 minutes in the right places and you won’t see anyone for miles.

      The infrastructure here at Tahoe needs to be upgraded. I’m all for development in the areas that are already impacted. Tear down the old junk and build the new developments with proper drainage,BmPs etc.

      Over 80% of the basins lands are national forest and conservancy. Get out and see it.

    6. Robin Smith says - Posted: November 3, 2015


      I do appreciate your attempts to sort out my rants. I do:)

    7. Dub says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      Squaw and alpine may be in the tahoe wilderness but they are not in the Lake Tahoe basin. You can’t develop tahoe only redevelop which is a darn good thing in getting rid of 50’s infrastructure. Keep the development in squaw and alpine as these areas have already been altered by man to crazy extents and aren’t sititing on one of the most protected and delicate resources on planet earth… Most of tahoe is public land and simply can’t be developed.

    8. Cautious and Skeptical says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      Dub, Yes there is a lot of public land in Tahoe that cannot be built upon, but there is private land too on the ridges and to be more specific Sierra Pacific Industries land on a ridge line on the North Shore that is going to be FOREVER ALTERED with not one, but two developments proposed by Mountain Side Partners (formerly East-West Partners): #1- Martis Valley West Parcel Specific Plan on the Martis Valley side of the ridge with 760 luxury units and approx 7 acres of commercial and a new intersection on a major artery-SR 267 and #2- Brockway Campground – 550 site campground with a lodge, swimming pool, camping sites , small RV sites, eco-yurts and other amenities on the Tahoe Basin side. The ridge lines are the last iconic scenic areas that are now targeted for development. When do the agencies just say NO?

    9. Robin Smith says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      One of the commenters, suggested windmills on the ridges and a bridge across Emerald Bay!

    10. TeaTotal says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      Robin Smith-you may want to back off the accusations of nonsense posts against others here-
      Your continuous blather about every single issue-regardless of any real knowledge thereof- is constantly in search of a cogent point-
      Guess who pays for all the necessary infrastructure improvements and environmental damage after the ‘developers’ make their money?-Where will all the needed service industry workers live?
      These things are completely unimportant to the ‘smash and grab’ corporate thieves.

    11. Cranky Gerald says - Posted: November 3, 2015


      Read a little…Cushing was the rich turkey who built Squaw, and yes he did build a lot of stuff without permits.
      He obviously had zero environmental concern as long as the cash rolled in.

      Basically all the bad developments are for the ownership and use of the upper economic crusts, and the hell with the more numerous middle and working classes.

      The comment about the iconic ridge tops is so right on. All ridge top development should be stopped. It stands out for a hundred miles from the air on clear days.

      There are photos showing Mt Shasta visible while aloft over the Sacramento area.

      This fight is worth having.

    12. Robin Smith says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      Crank…I am too old to read a lot anymore and most people are willing to offer info when asked. TY for your help:) Do you know if this Cushing knew Kjell Qvale or Robert E Hunter Jr?

      Tea…my continuous blather? In search of cogent point? I’ll let you know when I find one around here.

      TY again for all your help:)

    13. don't give up says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      You got yours Judy so the h*ll with everybody else. The Tahoe g*d may get angry.

    14. Dogula says - Posted: November 3, 2015

      I always find it ironic how many kids most of the “no growthers” have.

    15. Cautious and Skeptical says - Posted: November 4, 2015

      Be reminded that Squaw was built before the TRPA Compact was envisioned. That said, TRPA doesn’t have jurisdiction over Squaw but surely should be concerned about the villages like Squaw and Northstar outside the Basin as there are related inside the Basin impacts with scenic, night skies, traffic, AQ, water quality/demand, etc.

      Present day issues are back to Squaw- the proposed expansion is at least getting scrutinized by lots of folks and the Martis Valley West Parcel Specific Plan -760 unit development along with the Brockway campground of 550 campsites on the same ridge are also getting a lot of attention!

    16. MHO says - Posted: November 6, 2015

      I am ashamed to be included in the human race many days. All I can say is it, the fight, can be accomplished. My mother and myself single handily fought Sierra Ski Ranch in 1985 from turning it into a circus. Condos, pools, tennis courts, an overpass. Imagine the water consumption and the animals spaces violated. Enough is enough!!! Mankind needs to limit its population, zero growth. Mother Earth is in serious trouble and we need to fight for her rights.

    17. Toxic Warrior says - Posted: November 7, 2015

      Squaw Valley may not be in the basin – but I bet the same thing is happening – the explosion of proposed development is absurd and will cause significant stress on our infrastructure and way of life here at the lake. You can be assured that no one cares about locals quality of living.
      What has developed in the Tahoe Basin is a strategically designed group of “sustainability collaboratives” comprised of our environmental agencies and corporate developers with one thing in mind – Money ! The Agencies (TRPA, Tahoe Conservancy etc) invited these big developers knowing their agency administrations futures depend on “purpose and fees” derived from large scale development.
      The State of California is actually paying these sustainability collaboratives “Grant Funding” to carry out their self serving development and to literally manipulate our area planning to suit their needs. It is as corrupt as it gets – but these collaboratives and Agencies are represented and protected by our own Calif. State Department of Justice.
      What a nice little network club – don’t you think ?