Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort wants to add two new lifts and potentially even a zipline in American Fork Canyon- land they already own; however residents are not so quick to agree with this expansion mentality. Many long-time residents lined up to voice complaints about the expansion. Most of them relating to water quality, natural preservation, and the distaste for further construction. Also there is concern because this proposed area was an old mine with many heavy minerals that if disturbed could seriously threaten the health of locals via the water supply.
This would be the first infrastructure improvements that Snowbird has made since the 2005 upgrade of the Mineral Basin Tunnel. The list of ideas also includes multiple warming huts, a tram, redirecting a lift to make it more efficient and in less harms way of avalanche danger, expanding the lower section of the Mineral Basin lift, and adding the Mary Ellen lift in the next basin over (skiers right of the bookends).
While this may seem like a good idea for the resort and a way to compete against Vail Resorts, it is a double-edged sword. Many locals fear that this will be the undoing of Snowbird. It will turn in into Park City. A resort full of mega-mansions, roads, culverts, and ski cuts- which takes away from the natural beauty of the area. It may bring more business, but more business means more people. More people means more infrastructure and housing; and with a limited amount of space in Little Cottonwood Canyon- there would certainly be quite the environmental repercussions.
This proposed development is a sore subject and it appears that there is no way that locals will let it fly.