Squaw Valley’s name changes. Our commitment does not.
Alterra announced the new name for Squaw Valley: Palisades Tahoe.
Ironically, they seek to cash in on the Tahoe brand as they threaten at the same time the very values that make Tahoe special in the first place.
Our commitment to this awesome place remains unchanged.
Contact: Tom Mooers; (530) 265-2849 x200
August 24, 2021
SQUAW VALLEY SKI RESORT ANNOUNCES NEW NAME: PALISADES TAHOE
Resort owners Alterra Mountain Co. abandoning old name – but clinging to old development plans for iconic Tahoe destination
Olympic Valley, Calif. — The owners of the Tahoe ski mountain known as Squaw Valley announced today a new name for the famed resort: Tahoe Palisades.
The new name acknowledges the centrality of Lake Tahoe to the resort’s mountain region. But, according to Sierra conservationists, new development proposed for the valley threatens Tahoe values and the clarity of the lake.
“We welcome the new name as a reminder that the valley is part of the broader Tahoe region,” said Tom Mooers of Sierra Watch. “And we’ll keep working to defend the place no matter what it’s called.”
Resort owners Alterra Mountain Company, based in Denver, have sought to remake the Tahoe-Truckee region with development of a size, scale, and scope the Sierra has never seen. Plans for the valley include a series of high-rise condo hotels, a 90,000 square-foot indoor waterpark—as wide as a Walmart and nearly three times as tall, and a rollercoaster.
Sierra Watch, seeking to protect Tahoe from Alterra, has built a grassroots movement to Keep Squaw True (now Tahoe Truckee True). Over the last ten years, the conservation non-profit has engaged thousands of volunteers, produced a movie, and challenged development approvals in court.
Last month, California’s Third District Court of Appeals sided with Sierra Watch and dealt a staggering blow to Alterra’s plans. A panel of three Justices found that project approvals ignored important development impacts, essentially sending Alterra back to the drawing board.
A key issue to the court is highlighted by the resort’s new name: impacts on Tahoe and the lake’s famous clarity. Sierra Watch argued that the County’s environmental review downplayed impacts on the lake—especially how traffic from the new development would have added the pollutants that are steadily robbing the lake of its clarity.
The court agreed, ruling that “(T)he final EIR still never discussed the importance of Lake Tahoe or its current condition.”
Officials at Alterra acknowledged the setback but expressed ongoing commitment to their erstwhile project.
So, as Alterra seeks to cash in on the Tahoe brand with its new name for Squaw Valley, conservationists further their commitment to protecting Tahoe itself.
Sierra Watch is offering a new design of its ubiquitous purple stickers; they now read Tahoe Truckee True, furthering the notion that what is known as Squaw Valley is part of a broader mountain region.
“We appreciate Alterra’s willingness to re-consider the history of what we’ve known as Squaw Valley,” says Tom Mooers, Executive Director of Sierra Watch. “And we’re committed to convincing them to join us in re-imagining its future with a collaborative effort to keep Tahoe Truckee True.”