Relocation of Lift 1A down the hill so it is just a few steps from Dean Street has been a longtime desire in Aspen. The new plan to make it happen has been inclusive and evolving since 2016, when the Gorsuch Haus hotel was proposed at the top of South Aspen Street.
That application spurred Aspen City Council to ask the developers of Gorsuch Haus and the owners of the already approved Lift One Lodge (located immediately below Lift 1A) to engage with the City of Aspen and the Aspen Skiing Company and come up with a plan to move the lift back into town. And they did! In doing so, the plan and its ultimate approval now involves even more people.
Aspen Citizens: The path to approval of the new lift and both lodges ultimately rests with Aspen’s voters. Aspenites want Lift 1A to come down the hill into town like it was before 1972. People will have the opportunity over October and November to participate in public hearings, educate themselves about the plan and all its elements, and help shape the conversation ahead of an election later this winter.
Aspen Mountain Skier and Snowboarders: The people who use the mountain are part of the conversation and have the opportunity to comment before the Aspen Planning & Zoning Commission in October and Aspen City Council in November.
The Aspen Skiing Company: A key participant at every stage of the process, Aspen Skiing Company with input from its Aspen Mountain employees has made sure the Lift One Corridor plan works for skiing and snowboarding as well as for mountain operations.
Aspen Historical Society: The Aspen Historical Society has collaborated with the City of Aspen and Lift One Lodge with plans to relocate the historic Skiers Chalet Lodge to Dean Street and remodel it to house a museum that highlights Aspen’s skiing history. They are also collaborating on plans to spotlight the original Lift 1 bull wheel, chairs and towers in a way that honors the role Aspen’s first lift had in the community’s development.
The Dolinsek Family and Aspen Valley Land Trust: Josephine Dolinsek and the land trust, which will eventually take ownership of her family property as a public park and gardens, agreed to allow the Aspen Skiing Co. to use the land for snow storage during the ski season. Without their help, the lift could not have been moved.
The Lift 1 Neighborhood: The people who own and live in the condominiums along Durant Avenue, South Monarch Street and South Aspen Street have helped shape the proposal to work better in the neighborhood they know and love.
City of Aspen Staff: The staff at the City of Aspen have provided the leadership and guidance needed to find a solution that involved three private companies — Aspen Skiing Company, Lift One Lodge and Gorsuch Haus. In the end, everyone gave a little in order to come up with a plan that creates much more for the community by bringing Lift 1A back home and spotlighting or skiing history.
The Gorsuch Haus Team: Jeff Gorsuch and Bryan Peterson and their partners at Norway Island LLC reignited the community’s dream of moving Lift 1A back to its original location with their proposal for new hotel and lift at the top of South Aspen Street. Jeff, Bryan and Norway Island LLC have been extremely open to input from the public, the neighborhood and the City of Aspen and adjusted their proposal in response. They have always said they are in favor of moving the lift down to Dean Street and when the opportunity arose, they sat down with the other parties and helped make it happen. www.gorsuchhaus.com
The Lift One Lodge Team: The Lift One Lodge team has put their approved project on hold to work the City of Aspen, Gorsuch Haus, Aspen Skiing Company, and the Aspen Historical Society on realizing the community’s long wanted goal of bringing the lift down to Dean Street. www.liftonelodgeaspen.com