Belleayre Gets OK for $400 Million Development

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SAM Magazine-Albany, N.Y., Sept. 10, 2007-The State of New York has given the green light to a $400 million project to develop two hotels, 259 lodging units, a conference center, spa and organic golf course upon land adjacent to the state-owned Belleayre Mountain Ski Center. The planned development will feature ski-in/ski-out opportunities and will be the largest and most environmentally advanced development in the region in years.

The agreement to develop the land culminates seven years of legal wrangling between New York, New York City and Crossroads Ventures LLC. At issue was how to best preserve the Catskill-Delaware watershed, the source of drinking water for more than nine million New Yorkers and home to prized trout streams, and allow the project to proceed. In a key concession, Crossroads agreed to shift all proposed development out of the Ashokan Reservoir basin and to adopt a clustered development approach that reduces the total number of developed acres from 573 acres to 273 acres. The project includes construction of green buildings that will obtain certification under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program.

In addition, the state will assume ownership of 78 acres of the former Highmount Ski Center, which will be integrated into Belleayre.

"This project will simultaneously revitalize the region's economy by creating hundreds of new jobs and protect the environment through green buildings, watershed protection and land preservation," said Governor Elliot Spitzer. The project will create approximately 450 full time permanent jobs, 150 part-time jobs and 1,800 construction jobs over an the eight-year construction period.