The proponents of Garibaldi at Squamish a four season ski resort proposed for the slopes of Brohm Ridge have until the end of this month to show the B.C. Assets and Lands Corporation they have the financial capacity to see the project through the provincial approval process.
Garibaldi Alpen was given exclusive rights to come up with a comprehensive plan for the Crown land within a four-year period but suffered a major setback when it lost a key investor over a year ago.
That four-year period expires Feb. 28 this year but BCAL will extend the interim agreement with Garibaldi Alpen should the company come up the cash between $2 million and $5 million and an acceptable business plan that details how and when the Environmental Assessment and the Commercial Alpine Ski Policy requirements will be met.
Should the deadline be missed, however, BCAL will be in a position to entertain other commercial recreation proposals for that area.
But both the Crown corporations Charles Littledale and Garibaldi Alpens Wolfgang Richter say they are hopeful a plan can be presented before the interim agreement expires.
A meeting with Littledale, Richter and potential investors was due to take place Tuesday, Feb. 13.
Littledale said Richter still needs to provide a number of studies specified by the Environmental Assessment process. "And he needs money to conduct those studies in addition to the master plan process required under BCALs Commercial Alpine Ski Policy," noted Littledale. "The idea was to harmonize those two process so they could occur concurrently and it takes funding to do that," he said.
"What I have told Wolfgang is that the province needs to see, first of all, that there is financial capacity to complete those studies and complete the project and that a business plan is in place that demonstrates both financial capacity and liability in the project."
Littledale said Richter also needs a management plan that identifies the studies he has yet to undertake, complete with timelines and cost.
"That all needs to be presented by the end of this month," said Littledale. "We will grant some extension but he will have to demonstrate significant effort in those areas."
Littledale said he has met with Richters potential investors who have been trying to get a feel of what BCALs expectations are.
Richter said he is "working like the blazes" and "burning the midnight oil" in an effort to meet the deadline.
"Its sort of like doing a paper at university you have been working on it, done your research and if you can get it in on time, you get a good mark. But, if its late, you fail the course."
He said he has a couple of potential investment partners on both the ski resort operations and the real estate development side. He said they are well-known names, respected in their fields and familiar with doing business in B.C.
"They are major players."
Should Garibaldi Alpen fail to meet the deadline, BCAL will re-examine its options for the Brohm Ridge area, said Littledale.
"We wouldnt jump automatically into advertising a new opportunity up there if the interim agreement expires," he said. "There is a broad level of interest up there and times have changed. We would have to look at the mountain in todays context."
BCAL has received at least four applications for commercial recreation tenure in that area for activities ranging from heli-skiing, heli-biking and heli-fishing, to snowboarding camps and guided ATV, skiing, snowboarding and snowmobile tours.
Littledale said until the ski resort proposal agreement expires, those applications will be looked at in context of the interim agreement which has a prior right.
"Once it expires, its a different game."