Northstar Mountain Master Plan Approved Unanimously by Placer County Board of Supervisors

Dylan Cautela | BackcountryBackcountry
A beautiful view of Northstar’s tree runs. Source; Northstar.

In a board-meeting this past Tuesday, Northstar’s Mountain Master Plan was approved unanimously in a 5-0 vote.  With help through approval from the North Tahoe Regional Advisory Council and the Placer County Planning Commission, this master plan will now replace the 2003 Martis Valley Master Plan. The 20-year plan covers extensive upgrades all across the mountain and included a habitat management plan, which covers many environmental concerns of the project.

Northstar Mountain Master Plan Improvements

  • The plan would allow for expansion of existing ski terrain via six new ski lifts
  • Approximately 300 acres of new ski terrain spread between cut tree runs and gladed skiing, including some back country terrain located on Sawtooth Ridge
  • A high-speed gondola will extend from the Castle Peak parking area to the Northstar Village in order to help relieve traffic congestion and crowded parking
  • New snowmaking and associated infrastructure for higher quality snow conditions in low-tide season
  • Five new skier bridges to help the flow of skier traffic
  • Four new skier service lodges and facilities as well as improvements to existing skier service sites
  • Housing for 55 full-time employees
A detailed map of Northstar’s intended mountain and resort improvements. Source; Northstar.

With their well planned habitat management plan in hand, Northstar got the ball rolling on this 20-year development very quickly. The habitat management plan covered a lot of concerns, which were in the publics interest, including housing for the increasing workforce and major analysis of environmental impact. Through their analysis they were able to determine the best uses of proposed land with minimal impact on the environment as a highest priority by identifying habitat types, wildlife corridors, and endangered species in the area.

“The developer did a good job in addressing many of the concerns that the public had including environmental stewardship and workforce housing. We now have a project that, when built, will continue to elevate the Tahoe area’s internationally recognized reputation.”

Placer County Board Chairwoman Jennifer Montgomery

The entire Northstar resort covers 8,000 acres and claims almost 3,200 skiable acres. With skier traffic in the area continually rising, improvements across all aspects of the resort are much needed and have been covered well by this new master plan, in order to accommodate each individual guest experience.

A map depicting the type of land coverage on Northstar’s 8,000 acres. Source; Northstar.
A map showing the distribution of their environmental management and what they target. Source; Northstar.

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