Item: The alpine meadows road avalanches, real estate and politics
Title: The alpine meadows road avalanches, real estate and politics
Proceedings: Proceedings of the 1998 International Snow Science Workshop, Sunriver, Oregon
Authors: Larry Heywood, Alpine Meadow Ski Corporation, Tahoe City, California, Norm Wilson, Independent Consultant, Zephyr Cove, Nevada
Abstract: This case study will review the history of the avalanche problems effecting the Alpine Meadows Road and the resulting legal and political ramifications. The three mile county road provides access to the Alpine Meadows Ski Area and to two large resident subdivisions. Over 30 homes are built within the avalanche paths along or adjacent to the road. Avalanche potential was not considered in the initial route selection of the road or the development of the home sites along the road. The ski area, through a contract with the county provides avalanche forecasting and control services to protect the road. As a result of a relaxation of county avalanche zoning laws additional structures have been built within the avalanche paths along the road. In recent years both natural and artificially released avalanches have damaged homes and structures along the road. The potential for a large catastrophic avalanche event has resulted in the ski area, the county, the property owners of the avalanche paths and the homeowners along the road to reevaluate their responsibilities and liabilities.
Keywords: avalanche control, avalanche protection, avalanche zoning
Digital Abstract Not Available