CPT Considering Westward Expansion- Park City, Utah
August 29, 2015
Park City, known principally for its status as one of the USA’s top ski destinations, is also a top summer vacation spot, the location of the 2002 Winter Olympics, the headquarters of the United States Ski Team, the location of the Sundance Film Festival, and the site of the corporate headquarters of several international businesses. Park City is only a 45-minute drive from Salt Lake City. The easy airport access is a major factor in Park City’s popularity as an outdoor recreation haven.
Park City was founded by Mormon settlers in the mid 1800s due to the prevalence of silver, gold, and lead ore, of which silver was most significant. The town thrived as a silver mining community until the 1950s, when a sharp drop in the price of silver prompted companies to shut down their mines. However, in the 1960s Park City re-spawned as a ski resort. Due to the quantity and quality of the snow, the area flourished. Deer Valley, Park City’s accompanying high-end resort, is known to have “the greatest snow on earth.” The base elevation is 7,000 feet, which makes Park City noticeably cooler than nearby Salt Lake City, which sits at only 4,300 feet. The high elevation combined with the relatively dry air create an abundance of powdery snow relished by skiers. From 2007 – 2011 Deer Valley was named the best ski resort in the USA by Ski Magazine. Deer Valley won the World Ski Award for “best in the USA” in 2013 and 2014.
Nevertheless, the city has turned in to a year round tourist destination. During the summer there is outstanding hiking, mountain biking, and golf. In addition, Park City has excellent restaurants, shops, and nightlife. Although the town has only 7,600 full-time residents (2900 households), there are many part-time residents and over 600,000 tourists visit annually. According to Wikipedia, Park City is one of the “most affluent and lively resort towns in the USA.” The Park City Chamber & Visitors Bureau reports that 43% of winter visitors have household incomes exceeding $200,000 per year, that 76% have household incomes exceeding $100,000, and that visitors spend an average of $378 per day, excluding airfare. Summer visitors are slightly less affluent. Only 9% of summer visitors have household incomes above $200,000 and only 42% have incomes above $100,000. In addition, summer visitors spend a lesser amount of $295 per day.
Due to the city’s proximity to Salt Lake and the income level and celebrity of many of its residents and guests, Park City poses an interesting location for expansion. While visiting Park City, CPT’s Mark Spivak engaged in a 16.2 mile combined trail run and hike that started at 7,300 feet elevation and climbed an additional 1,300 feet. Mark also visited a restaurant in Deer Valley and one in Park City during his brief stay.
The following are photographs from Mark’s mountainous excursion: