News Roundup: Colorado

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Likely new lifts for 2017 are pacing 39 percent ahead of last year, when 28 new lifts had been announced on this date.  I’ve identified 39 lift projects for 2017 and if last year’s pattern holds, lift manufacturers will build approximately 57 new ropeways in N. America in 2017, the most since 2004.  We’ll know by about July 1.

Belleayre to Get Base-to-Summit Gondola

Just weeks after unveiling plans for two new chairlifts and a gondola for Whiteface Mountain and the state fairgrounds, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo today announced $8 million in improvements at Belleayre Mountain, including a new high-speed gondola.

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“Belleayre Mountain is one of the crown jewels of the Catskills and a major driver of the region’s tourism economy,” Governor Cuomo said today. “With this investment, we are supporting vital upgrades at this mountain to ensure it remains an unparalleled year-round recreation destination and continues to leverage economic growth for the entire region for generations to come.”

The new 8-passenger lift will feature 65 cabins, a six-minute ride time and vertical rise of 1,300 feet.  A manufacturer and timeline were not specified but the cost will be approximately $5 million, which sounds like a screaming deal.  The last new lift built at Belleayre was the Superchief Express, a 2006 Doppelmayr CTEC.  All five of Belleayre’s current chairlifts will likely remain after installation of the gondola in 2017 or 2018.