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Sunday, December 30, 2012

Closing Canyon in the Evening Very Dangerous to Valley Residents

Guest post by Sally Lindsay, Huntsville

We all know that driving The North Ogden Divide or Trappers Loop in the winter presents special challenges.  Closing the Canyon at 8 PM is very dangerous to valley residents, especially our teenage children.  Driving from school activities over the North Ogden Divide at night in the winter is extremely dangerous, especially during storms.  Driving over Trapper’s loop at night in the winter in potential whiteout conditions, presents the same dangerous conditions.   Drivers will face highway isolation, the very real possibility of hitting a large animal, and accidents that might not be discovered until who knows when.  This is absolutely unacceptable and another solution needs to be found.

We have all been co-operative about dealing with the canyon closures.  This does not induce a cooperative spirit.  It smacks of not wanting to pay for the extra people involved to keep the canyon open.  It also smacks of ‘poor homework’ done by all involved.  The company had plenty of time and did plenty of research. Conducting this project in the middle of winter was an interesting choice at best.  If they have discovered problems, this is their problem and should not put residents in danger on top of inconvenience.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Ogden Canyon to be fully closed during the evening hours.

We just received this disappointing news regarding the Ogden Canyon Waterline Project:

Due to some unforeseeable site conditions on the Ogden Canyon Waterline project, it will be necessary to use the open cut method of construction for the remainder of the project.   Open cut construction requires a much larger work area than the pipe bursting method, and much of the canyon is too narrow to construct the pipeline and keep traffic lanes open.  In meeting with the contractor, Ogden City, project engineers, and UDOT, it has been determined that the best course of action will be to maintain the current 10-15 minute delays during the day, and implement a full closure of SR-39 in Ogden Canyon during the night.  The closure hours will be as follows:

January 2, 2013 – March 31, 2013
Sunday night through Friday morning: 8pm – 5am
Friday night through Sunday morning: 9pm – 6am

April 1, 2013 – June 1, 2013
Sunday night through Friday morning: 9pm – 5am
Friday night through Sunday morning: 9pm – 6am

These night time closures will allow the contractor full use of the road to stage equipment and material, thus allowing the project to progress more quickly, increasing the likelihood that the project will be completed ahead of schedule.

As a condition of the closure, emergency vehicles and local traffic (Ogden Canyon Residents) will still be allowed to travel on SR-39 during the night time closures, though there will still be some delays at the construction zones. 

Over the next few days, a representative from Horrocks Engineers will be visiting the Ogden Canyon residents to discuss these closures, answer any questions the residents may have, and distribute identification cards to present to the traffic control flaggers during the night time closures.

We thank you for your continued patience during this project.  We apologize in advance for any inconvenience that this may cause.  We hope that you will help us in spreading the word to any potentially impacted people you may know.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Green Valley Academy changes name to Waypoint Academy

Nationwide job search ongoing

Construction is nearing completion of the infamous Green Valley Academy, which is curiously now called Waypoint Academy.   The facility plans to open in March, 2013.

Residents will remember when Academy owners initially were considering a large home near the Trinity Abby in Huntsville as their campus.  Neighbors objected to having troubled teens housed in their backyards.  Ultimately, Academy owners removed their petition and later purchased property in another residential neighborhood on Highway 39.

A Weber County planning staffer decided the Academy fit the definition of a "school" and issued approval for the mammoth facility, rather than putting the issue on the planning commission's agenda.

Concerns over potential water shortages and other issues surfaced, and the "Protect our water" campaign ensued.

Waypoint Academy has been ramping up lately and has been advertising several job openings nationwide on such sites as  At press time, the ad is no longer posted.  However, multiple positions are still being offered here.

The name change is interesting.  While we may never know the reason behind the change, there is considerable negative Internet clutter related to the Green Valley Academy, so owners may be
looking for a new beginning with Waypoint Academy.

Early on, during meetings held in 2010, Academy owners stated publicly that they would accept low risk "Forest Gump" type kids.  More specifically, kids with Autism, Asperger's syndrome and similar disorders.  However, their new website makes no mention of there disorders and instead touts anxiety.
WayPoint Academy provides specialized treatment for young men between the ages of 13-18 who are afflicted with various types of anxiety.
  • Generalized Anxiety 
  • Social Phobia
  • Panic Attacks
  • Agoraphobia
  • Specific Phobia
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Depression is frequently present in individuals with severe anxiety. Thus, the criteria for admission also includes students with symptoms of depressive disorder.
East Huntsville will be welcoming their new neighbors before we know it.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Ogden Canyon Update - Open until New Years

·         The contractor is currently prepping the ground at the bottom of the canyon for the temporary asphalt, which will be installed in the latter part of this week.
·         Both lanes of traffic through the canyon will be opening to the public on Saturday, December 22nd, to allow for safe and convenient holiday travel.  One lane travel will resume on January 2, 2013.
Thank you all for your patience during this project.  Your feedback is very much appreciated.  Feel free to visit the website at, or call the hotline at (801) 675-8198.  You may also stop in to speak with us at the project hub located at the Horrocks Engineers office at 3544 Lincoln Avenue, Suite 11, in Ogden.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Summit Group Hosts Town Hall Meeting

The Summit Group, the new managers and future owners of Powder Mountain, hosted a town hall meeting for the community on December 6, 2012.

We will overview some of the highlights below:
  • Powder town (aka Powderville) is dead.  The petition to incorporate and subsequent lawsuits have been dropped.
  • They have purchased several parcels during the Wolf Creek bankruptcy sale, of which a 1500 acre will remain open space.
  • The previous owners had mentioned 10,000, 5,000 and 3,000 homes with golf courses and 19 lifts.  Summit feels those numbers are excessive.
  • Phase one will consist of 500 smaller (4,000 sq. ft.) single family homes south of the Hidden Lake parking lot.
  • They plan to preserve the existing terrain and the number of lifts will remain roughly status quo.
  • They own the Wolf Barn and 80 surrounding acres.  They plan to use it for resort base parking during the ski season, then reseed and use as a public park in the off season.  Possibly soccer fields.
  • They hope to revive the Balloon Festival.
  • After phase one, they hope to redone much of the 10,000 acres as TR-1 - Resort Zone.
  • Last year, there were 139,000 skier days at Powder Mountain.
What is your impression of our new neighbors?  
Who will be the first to opine?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Skyler Shepherd found guilty on all counts in Pineview Boating Fatality

Skyler Shepherd was found guilty on all counts in the Pineview boating tragedy in which Huntsville resident Ester Fujimoto was killed in August of 2011.

Friend Colton Raines was at the controls of Shepherd's boat when they accidentally ran over Fujimoto, who was swimming.   Shepherd took over the controls, returned to Fujimoto, then fled the scene and left Fujimoto for dead.  Robert Cole Boyer was also in the boat that hit Fujimoto.

Huntsville resident Vaughn Anderson heard Fujimoto's cries for help and rowed out to assist her in his small boat.  Anderson's testimony and a 22 minute recording of his 911 call were key elements of the trial.

The Standard offers more details:

Shepherd guilty on all counts in Pineview boating death

Sentencing is set for Jan. 23 on the charges of reckless endangerment and obstruction of justice, both class A misdemeanors, and failure to render aid, a class B misdemeanor. Maximum sentence for a class A misdemeanor is a year in county jail; maximum sentence for a class B is six months.

County Prosecutor Dean Saunders said more serious charges could have been filed if officers were able to take blood samples at the crime scene from Shepherd and Raines. According to testimony, Shepherd and Raines had been drinking that day and Raines had possibly been smoking marijuana.
The other two boaters will face trial in February.

Click here for more coverage of the trial.

Wethinks he got a slap on the wrist.  How about you?

Friday, December 07, 2012

Ogden Canyon closed Friday - Saturday -- UPDATED

Ogden canyon will be closed Friday, December 7, 2012 from 9:00 am until Saturday, December 8, 2012 at 9:00 am for unexpected construction issues.  Please plan accordingly.

UPDATE @ 4:45 pm 12/7/2012

Ogden Canyon is now open.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Summit Group Community Town Hall Meeting Thursday - New Location

Monday we posted a notice of Thursday's Town Hall Meeting presented by the Summit Group, the new managers and future owners of Powder Mountain.

The response has been so great that they have changed the venue to accommodate more people.

The meeting will still be held:

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Time: 6:00 PM

Pine View Lodge
3900 North Wolf Creek Drive
Eden, UT

The 1st building past Harley & Bucks (parking lots are connected).

Be sure to attend to see the Summit vision for our valley and have your questions answered.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Summit Group, Powder Mountain and Ogden Valley (aka Eden Valley) - What next?

Expanded Coverage of the Story that hit the airwaves yesterday

The story we broke nearly ten months ago came to fruition yesterday when Summit Group announced they had taken over management of Powder Mountain.

The announcement marks the end of the black cloud of oppression that has loomed over the mountain since 2006, when the resort was sold by the Cobabe family, who founded and developed the resort, to Western America Holdings. 

Many remember the Powderville Saga, when Western America attempted to create a company town by forcing unwilling residents into their town so the resort owners could create their own zoning rather than use the existing, more restrictive zoning.  Their apparent goal was to hold the residents hostage in exchange for extensive zone changes.  After years of negotiations, a substantial rezone was allowed and the Powderville Town petition was withdrawn on November 13, 2012.

At last, Powder Mountain resort granted substantial rezone  - Standard Examiner

From the Summit web site,
Located in the town of Eden, Utah, Powder Mountain is home to the largest skiable mountain in the United States with more than 10,000 acres of terrain. The resort will remain open to the public and Summit plans to preserve the character of the mountain.
“Instead of overpowering nature, we’re looking at how we can preserve an environment of open spaces, uncompromising vistas, and year-round adventure. Our goal is to create a place that has a positive impact not just on the residents of Summit Eden and the Ogden Valley, but the state of Utah, and the world,” said Elliot Bisnow.
We like Bisnow's statement and will remain cautiously optimistic.

Our friends at the Weber County Forum weighed in yesterday.

As an added bonus, we will include some links to videos and recent articles from other sources.

Summit promotional video

The Vision video

Summit To Buy Powder Mountain To Create Entrepreneur Community -- Forbes

Tour The $40 Million Mountain 4 Entrepreneurs Just Bought So They Could Have A Permanent Party Location -- Business Insider

New owners’ updates to keep Powder Mountain the same - Salt Lake Tribune

"We think we can do something great here," said Summit’s 27-year-old founder and CEO, Elliott Bisnow, noting the new owners have jettisoned previous plans to transform Powder Mountain with close to 4,000 dwelling units.
"Our footprint will be more modest," he added — 500 homes in a horseshoe around a village on the resort’s east side, not visible from Powder Mountain’s main facilities.
"I fell in love with every single thing you heard about the character of Powder Mountain and what it stood for. It was the last undeveloped resort," Bisnow said of his first trip to the upper Ogden Valley ski area in July 2011. "I thought, ‘What if we could take this resort and preserve what it is?’ "
Bisnow took his idea to the Summit team, who bought into the concept.
"We’re not trying to shake things up but enhance what’s here," said Thayer Walker, a Summit partner. "If we do things in a smart, incremental, sustainable fashion, we can preserve Powder Mountain’s character for years."
That’s because Summit’s mission is different than most companies, said co-founder Jeff Rosenthal. "We’re looking for a return on community rather than a return on investment."
  Incoming Powder Mountain owners to enhance resort - Standard Examiner

What say ye Ogden Valle residents and friends about latest developments in the Powderville saga?

Monday, December 03, 2012

Summit Series Group Takes Over Management of Powder Mountain - Town Hall Meeting December 6, 2012 -- UPDATED

UPDATED 12-5-2013 @ 1200 PM   --  Venue Changed to Pineview Lodge @ Wolf Creek

Guest Post/Announcement from The Summit Team

Since moving to Eden in February we on the Summit team have fallen in love with the Ogden Valley, Utah, and Powder Mountain. Today, we're proud to announce that we have taken over management of Powder Mountain and will complete the purchase in early 2013.

We'd like to take this opportunity to offer an invitation to a fun and informative town hall meeting at Powder Mountain. We're excited to introduce ourselves to those we haven't met already, outline our goals to preserve the heritage and values of Powder Mountain, and answer questions.

When: 6pm, Thursday, Dec 6, 2012.
Pine View Lodge
3900 North Wolf Creek Drive
Eden, UT

The 1st building past Harley & Bucks (parking lots are connected).
Due to capacity issues, space is limited to the first 300 people. We hope to see you there.

The Summit Team