Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

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jipstyle
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Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by jipstyle » Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:18 am

I hate that people think that every inch of the province needs to be easily accessible .. bad enough that the Chief trail is practically all stairs now.

http://www.seatoskygondola.com/

Stephen Hooper
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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by Stephen Hooper » Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:31 am

I'm all for putting Starbucks on top of every mountain and a strip mall/tourist center at the base. Will there be a FB group set up to oppose this development?

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BlahMatt
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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by BlahMatt » Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:36 am

In all fairness, this is a different proposal (http://www.seatoskygondola.com/the-proposal/). This gondola is intended to go to the ridge on Habrich.

I`m still hugely opposed to it but, it is a different group, pushing a different plan.

Please take a little time to fill out the `get involved` section on the site (http://www.seatoskygondola.com/get-involved/) and voice your opinion if this matters to you. And, get involved in the community group meetings.

Cheers.

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by squamish climber » Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:25 am

Here we go again but as mentioned upthread, these are different people this time. They're local and are probably keenly aware of the reasons the last proposal didn't fly. This proposal does not go up to the top of the Chief but up the ridge line towards Mt Habrich two hundred meters above the Chief and a valley away.
Image
source: seatoskygondola.com

I think it's too early to come down either way unless you oppose any gondola anywhere. It may be helpful to remember that not everybody is as fortunate as us to be healthy and in enough physical shape to hike the back side of the Chief let alone climb a 5.9 up the front. But maybe if they can access the backcountry some of them will be inspired to value it and perhaps even pursue non-mechanized experiences in nature.

Let's have a good debate here but please keep it civil and no personal attacks.
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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by t2climb » Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:44 am

If you can't get there under your own power that is why there are helicopters and paved roads into alpine areas.

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by squamish climber » Wed Jun 29, 2011 12:23 pm

The Squamish Access Society has already been briefed on this proposal. I understand they will inform members on the details of the meeting next week. Charlie Harrison president of the SAS offered his own opinion to the Chief newspapertoday:
“Based on the initial information that's been provided, it's my opinion that this is a project that the climbing community could get behind.”
One benefit he offers in the article is improved access to several new climbing routes.

But Harrison also raised some concerns including, the fact that the Gondola would pass through the Stawamus Provincial Park and increased pressures on environment.
“You're going to be taking a lot more people into the backcountry, which always raises environmental issues,” Harrison said. “And I think there are issues with going through a provincial park. That's one of the issues that would need to be ironed out before we decide whether to provide the support.”
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Optimally-Primed
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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by Optimally-Primed » Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:34 pm

Benefits of the Gondola:

1. The gondola would mean vastly improved to Habrich and Skypilot (a few hours approach; easy daytrip) and would open up a ton of backcountry skiing, the easiest/best daytrip south of Whistler?

2. It might decrease the overcrowding in the parking lots at Shannon and the Chief.

3. The lot will be developed: that is the simple reality. TLC can't afford to protect it any longer. The question is not *if* but *what*. What would people rather see there? Walmart? McDonalds?

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by psi4ce » Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:02 pm

TLC can't afford to protect it any longer.
Why not? Why are they selling it? Where's the "Conservancy" in that?

Put in a gondola there and you change the "wild" character of the park forever.

It's not a good thing.

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by Optimally-Primed » Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:17 pm

Put in a gondola there and you change the "wild" character of the park forever.

It's not a good thing.
Was that Walmart? Or McDonalds?

Who cares why TLC can't afford it. They can't. It has or will be sold to the highest commercial bidder.

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by psi4ce » Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:27 pm

Who cares why TLC can't afford it.
I do respect your opinion on the matter, and I can see the other side of the argument.

But, it just so happens that I care. Quite a bit, actually. I've never even remotely liked the fact that TLC put the gravel pit up for sale, and after repeated attempts to discover the details about why they were selling it, and to whom, I have yet to receive a satisfactory answer. TLC themselves ignored my inquiry. I find it disappointing after personally supporting TLC in more ways than one, including financially. I thought they did a good job at Skaha, but with this and few other things, I now have serious doubts.

And yes, I realize that the sale has probably already been completed...

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by BlahMatt » Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:32 pm

I have been e-mailing back and forth with Trevor Dunn regarding this proposal (read more about the founders here : http://www.seatoskygondola.com/our-team/) and I'll post the pertinent details on the forum once conclusive points have been reached.

It does seem like they have given a lot of thought to this and intend to work with different organizations within Squamish to make this happen properly with minimal impact to the environment and access.

Part of my concern is that while it is being approached with a look at what is good for Squamish, it is a commercial investment. It is a business. And it's goal does involve more people (ie. more money) and ease of access. I'm undecided on whether it is a positive or a negative proposal but, I think it is important that people understand all the details before rallying against or for this.

Also, if TLC is selling it, someone is going to buy the space. It's in everybody's interest that whoever owns it cares about how it affects access and the environment.

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by Stephen Hooper » Wed Jun 29, 2011 5:56 pm

Optimally-Primed wrote:Benefits of the Gondola:

3. The lot will be developed: that is the simple reality. TLC can't afford to protect it any longer. The question is not *if* but *what*. What would people rather see there? Walmart? McDonalds?
I fully agree that the lot will be developed into a tourist type structure for what ever purpose. Don't think anything but a pretty tourist trap would be allowed to go into that spot though. What I have an issue with is the loss of an iconic view that will be destroyed by putting in the gondola and amenities on top of Mount Habrich. I cant imagine hiking up the Chief only to see a tourist trap on the next hill over. I sure with all the hiking, climbing, ski touring, ect. options it would open up that the back country would be turned into Grouse Mountain 2 in no time.

I am still not impressed but am open to seeing how this plays out and what the different arguments are for and against.

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by Dru » Wed Jun 29, 2011 7:03 pm

I'd rather see a structure, either gondola or footbridge, across the Squamish River. A gondola with a base near the railway museum would be perfect.

It'd bring tourists into downtown, too.

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by NateDoggOG » Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:12 pm

It might open up possibilities for new climbing routes in other areas? I am still new to BC and don't know of any routes besides what is listed in the guides, but maybe a gondola will allow access to sites that may only previously have been accessible by hiking and camping in. Who knows, maybe the next great multipitch route is only a short trolley ride away :D
If the thing is going to go up, might as well look at it glass half full.
Maybe it won't be so bad, as long as we don't have to worry about tourists overflowing parking lots that are more climber oriented, and the Chief is still meant for those who have the capacity to make it up the front or back.
The climber's territory will still belong to the climbers...... we won't have to worry about wading through crowds of tourists to get to the base of Angel's Crest anytime in the foreseeable future.

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Re: Here we go again (Squamish Gondola proposal)

Post by staven » Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:24 pm

A foot bridge / gondola across the Squamish would serve a way better purpose, get better views, get higher up, more climbing, more skiing, more of everything. You can already get to the top of the gondola (essentially) with a vehicle if you're enterprising enough. Why not go somewhere totally different? An even more remote, unspoiled experience for the newbs, plus an incredibly vast, largely untapped wilderness for the more adventurous? Furthermore, how much will it cost for a ride? Is this really feasible? What happens when they go broke and there's an ugly linear right of way cleared with no gondola as a constant reminder of the fate of new business in Squamish? Maybe I'm just cynical.

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