Proposed resort west of Garibaldi Park would be the latest addition to existing mountain resorts along the Sea to Sky Highway.

Garibaldi ski resort gets B.C. approval

Resort proposed near Squamish scaled down by removing golf courses, still plans 22,000-bed development, 23 ski lifts

The B.C. government has issued an environmental assessment certificate for Garibaldi at Squamish mountain resort, proposed as a major competitor for North Shore ski hills and Whistler-Blackcomb resort.

The project has faced strong commercial and environmental opposition over 15 years, and the approval comes with 40 conditions and cautions about its impacts to the area.

Garibaldi at Squamish is now backed by Aquilini Group and Northland Properties, the Gaglardi family company that owns Revelstoke Mountain Resort and once battled the Aquilinis over ownership of the Vancouver Canucks.

The Squamish Nation is a partner in the Garibaldi project, which proposes expansion over 25 years to a 22,000-bed year-round resort village on Brohm Ridge near Squamish. It includes 23 ski lifts and 124 developed ski trails, scaled down from the original plan that included two golf courses and more housing.

Squamish Nation Chief Ian Campbell said the certificate is the first step in getting the project going, and more approvals will be needed from his council and the province.

“Squamish Nation will obtain a licence over a wilderness area that will be equal in size to the project area to practise its aboriginal rights,” Campbell said in a statement. “Although the project is controversial, Squamish Nation is comfortable that its cultural and environmental interests have been protected and that it will share appropriately in the economic benefits of the project.”

In issuing the certificate, Environment Minister Mary Polak and Forests Minister Steve Thomson noted that the proponents made significant changes during environmental assessment. They include changing the water supply from Brohm River surface water to groundwater, as well as removing golf courses and housing near Cat and Brohm Lakes, which are popular recreation lakes for Squamish residents.

Whistler council has lobbied the B.C. government to reject the project, arguing it would take business away from existing resorts, rather than draw more skiers in a “cluster effect” as argued by its proponents.

The Federation of Mountain Clubs of B.C. has also opposed the development, suggesting it may result in a move to expand into Garibaldi Park, as was the case with the Whistler-Blackcomb expansion.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Struggling to afford rent, Sylvia Bailey is hoping to trade her love of cooking for some more affordable accommodation. (Photo courtesy of Sylvia Bailey)
Retired Victoria woman looking to cook, clean or garden in exchange for rent

Sylvia Bailey is hoping to use her love for cooking to help afford rent

Victoria police are searching for a suspect after a stabbing Monday night. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria police searching for suspect in late-night stabbing

Victim taken to hospital with potentially life-threatening injuries

Panthers’ Captain Tanner Wort faces Tory McClintick of the Victoria Cougars during Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League action Friday night at Panorama Recreation Centre. The Panthers lost 3-0, then lost 7-2 Sunday. (Gordon Lee/Submitted)
Peninsula Panthers’ losing streak reaches four games as injuries mount

Injuries have especially hurt the team’s backline with only four defenders available

The drive-through COVID-19 testing facility at the Saanich Peninsula Hospital. (Black Press Media file photo)
Island Health opens COVID-19 testing site at UVic

As with all other sites, an appointment is needed to receive a test

Thousands filled Centennial Square in June for the peace rally for Black lives, sparked by outrage over the death of George Floyd in the U.S. (Black Press Media file photo)
Survey seeks input on racism in Greater Victoria

Confidential answers to inform work with immigrants and marginalized people

Carolyn and Steve Touhey came across a pod of humpback whales while on their boat Sunday, Oct. 25. Photo supplied
VIDEO: Boaters encounter pod of humpbacks in Georgia Strait

Pod spotted between Comox and Texada Island

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau provides an update on the COVID pandemic during a press conference in Ottawa on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trudeau says pandemic ‘really sucks,’ and that Christmas gatherings are up in the air

The prime minister encouraged residents to continue to follow the advice of local health authorities

The Williams Lake Indian Band is stipulating no-go zones for mushroom picking in areas burned by last summer’s wildfires. 100 Mile Free Press photo
Who controls mushroom harvesting on Indigenous lands?

‘We don’t necessarily know where the mushrooms grow, how old the stands need to be, those types of things.’

Canadian and American flags fly near the Ambassador Bridge at the Canada/USA border crossing in Windsor, Ont. on Saturday, March 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Rob Gurdebeke
U.S. election results one factor that could impact immigration to Canada next year

The survey polled 1,523 Canadians between Oct. 23 and Oct. 25

The voting station mimicked a real voting station in Nicole Choi’s classroom at Chilliwack middle school on Oct. 22, 2020, where students had to show their ID (student cards), be checked off a list, and mark a secret ballot behind a screen. (Jessica Peters/ Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. students choose NDP majority in mock election

More than 90,000 youth took part in school-based election process

Crew transport bus at the Trans Mountain pipeline project work site in Burnaby, March 2020. (Trans Mountain)
Check your workplace COVID-19 safety plans, Dr. Henry urges

Masks in public spaces, distance in lunchrooms for winter

B.C.’s Court of Appeal is in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Judgment reserved in Surrey Six slayings appeals

Six men were killed in suite 1505 of the Balmoral Tower in Whalley on Oct. 19, 2007

Kelowna City Hall has been vandalized overnight. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Kelowna City Hall hit by anti-pandemic vandalism

Graffiti condemning the virus appears overnight on City Hall

FILE – A woman smokes a marijuana joint at a “Wake and Bake” legalized marijuana event in Toronto on October 17, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Christopher Katsarov
Home nurse visits could play big role in reducing cannabis use, smoking in young mothers

The program, dubbed the BC Healthy Connections Project, involves public health nursing home visits

Most Read