Sunshine Village Ski Area Long-Range Plan and Detailed Impact Assessment

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Consultation has concluded, thank you for your input. 

Sunshine Village Ski Area is developing a new Long-Range Plan (LRP) to enhance the resort, while focusing on both guest experience and education, as well as environmental sustainability. This new plan involves upgrades and proposals that will positively impact our facilities and lifts.

Sunshine Village has been welcoming ski enthusiasts to the area since the early 1930’s. Now an internationally recognized ski destination, Sunshine welcomes skiers and snowboarders from early November through to late May. It is a popular skiing destination for hundreds of thousands of visitors annually, as well as a popular hiking destination throughout the summer. Since the

Sunshine Village Ski Area is developing a new Long-Range Plan (LRP) to enhance the resort, while focusing on both guest experience and education, as well as environmental sustainability. This new plan involves upgrades and proposals that will positively impact our facilities and lifts.

Sunshine Village has been welcoming ski enthusiasts to the area since the early 1930’s. Now an internationally recognized ski destination, Sunshine welcomes skiers and snowboarders from early November through to late May. It is a popular skiing destination for hundreds of thousands of visitors annually, as well as a popular hiking destination throughout the summer. Since the 1930’s Sunshine has developed its facilities and lifts to offer exceptional ski terrain and amenities to guests. We are excited at the opportunity to engage our guests during the Long-Range Planning process, and we look forward to hearing your opinions, ideas, and questions as we move forward.

Long-Range Planning Process:

In 2018, Sunshine Village worked with Parks Canada to create our Site Guidelines for Development and Use. These guidelines created a road map for Sunshine Village to plan and enhance facilities to ensure that we can continue to provide exceptional experiences for guests, while protecting and improving the natural environment. In 2019, a new 42-year lease was issued (thru to 2061) for the operation and development of the Ski Area. Sunshine Village owners, executives and managers recognize the need for continual enhancement of the facilities, services, and infrastructure to ensure that the company remains sustainable and competitive.

Following the approval of the Site Guidelines, and the issuing of a new lease, Sunshine Village must prepare a Long-Range Plan (or plans) and associated Detailed Impact Assessment (DIA) describing the group of project proposals, consistent with the Site Guideline direction that the ski area wishes to advance. Sunshine is able to proceed, at its discretion, with submission of an additional Long-Range Plan(s), apply to amend the plan, or advance projects that are consistent with the approved Site Guidelines. This approach may be repeated until a ski area reaches the permanent growth limits contained in the approved Site Guidelines.

The process of creating our Long-Range Plan requires collaboration between Parks Canada and the ski area, engagement with Indigenous Peoples and the Canadian public, as well as application of requirements under the Impact Assessment Act, SC 2019, c 28, s 1.

What’s included in our Long-Range Plan proposal?

It is recognized by all levels of management that Sunshine Village is located in a popular and important Canadian national park, as well as located within a Canadian Rocky Mountain UNESCO world heritage site. Due to this, Sunshine has placed Parks Canada values at the forefront of our planning, including the protection of wildlife, vegetation and the unique heritage throughout both Sunshine Village and Banff National Park.

The LRP advances components for multiple projects, summarizes the findings of our Detailed Impact Assessment, and outlines our plans to address the set of general requirements that must be reflected in the Long-Range Plan. These projects will create a new chairlift and lodge, as well as allow Sunshine to increase capacity while continuing to serve our guests an extraordinary experience in the Canadian Rockies.

What is a Detailed Impact Assessment?

The Parks Canada impact assessment process has been developed to fulfill legal obligations under the Impact Assessment Act as well as other legal and mandated obligations to protect and present Canada’s natural and cultural heritage. The process analyzes the nature of the project’s interactions with the environment and the potential for adverse effects. For more complex projects, or those in highly sensitive environments, the process of conducting an impact assessment is more involved and the analytical demands are higher. A Detailed Impact Assessment is Park Canada’s most comprehensive impact assessment process. This assessment ensures clear understanding of the potential project impacts, both positive and negative, and prepares the project to address any risks or adverse impacts.

Find out more and let us know what you think:

Below you will find links to the topics discussed in our Long-Range Plan and associated Detailed Impact Assessment. These links will provide you with detailed information on our proposed new chairlift and lodge, and plans for parking expansion, water management, vegetation, and environmental impact management, as well as other important topics. Further detail regarding our proposed Long-Range Plan and our Detailed Impact Assessment (completed by Golder Associates Ltd.), and additional associated links can be found in the Documents Library. Feedback on the impact assessment, including proposed mitigations, or opportunities that you feel should be considered in the planning process would be greatly appreciated.

After the comment period closes, all comments received will be compiled, reviewed, and carefully analyzed and used to inform the final versions of the Long-Range Plan and Detailed Impact Assessment for the Sunshine Village Ski Area. Finally, a report summarizing the feedback will be made public.

The comment period is open now until July 18, 2022.

Consultation has concluded, thank you for your input. 

Ask Questions.

Do you have questions regarding our Long-Range Plan? Please submit your questions to the below forum. Once answered, your question will be publicly posted below. 

*If you would like your question to be answered privately, please indicate this in your submission.*

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    How is the Indigenous engagement and consultation component being done? Are the communities who have a history in the area being directly contacted for input and engagement or are communities expected to find the posting for this public consultation on their own?

    RJames625 asked 5 months ago

    Indigenous Nation’s have been contacted directly, through Parks Canada, regarding the engagement process.