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Vail Resorts on Monday issued the following press release on affordable housing, including its delayed project in East Vail that has been approved by the town and upheld in a legal challenge when it was known as Booth Heights (although the previous developer, Triumph, is no longer involved):
BROOMFIELD, Colo., April 11, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Today, Vail Resorts announced four investments to provide accessible and affordable housing for its employees at Park City Mountain in Utah, Whistler Blackcomb in British Columbia, Vail Mountain in Colorado, and Okemo Mountain Resort in Vermont as part of the company’s strategic focus on investing in the employee experience. Collectively, the four investments will provide new affordable housing to more than 875 Vail Resorts employees, marking a more than 10 percent increase in affordable employee housing offered by the company across its resorts.
Last month, Vail Resorts CEO Kirsten Lynch shared in a letter to employees a commitment to aggressively pursue affordable employee housing in partnership with the mountain communities in which it operates. The commitment includes building new developments on the land the company owns and securing new leases in affordable housing developments to ensure rental rates remain affordable for its employees.
“Our employees are at the core of our mission to create an Experience of a Lifetime,” Lynch said. “Bringing our mission to life for our guests starts by creating it for our employees, and affordable housing is an essential part of that. As our mountain communities have grown, affordable housing has become increasingly more difficult for our employees to access – addressing this must be a top priority for our company and our communities. These projects reflect progress on our commitment and we remain focused on aggressively pursuing more opportunities in our resort communities.”
In addition, earlier this season, the company invested in incremental affordable housing at Stevens Pass in Washington state for 24 additional employees, as part of the company’s ongoing efforts to pursue and secure affordable employee housing across its resorts.
These affordable employee housing investments are in addition to the incremental $175 million annual investment Vail Resorts is making in employee wages, seasonal frontline leadership development, and HR support. The investment includes a new $20 per hour minimum wage for the 2022/23 season and differential adjustments for hourly employees at all 37 North American resorts, representing an average wage increase of nearly 30-percent across hourly employees in North America.
Additionally, Vail Resorts is investing more than $300 million into its on-mountain guest experience ahead of the 2022/23 season. 21 new lifts are planned across 14 resorts to reduce wait times. The company’s largest single-year capital investment also includes terrain and restaurant expansions at Keystone.