Owner George Gillett proposes to rezone Grand Targhee from rural to resort. The expansion would increase lodging units from 96 to 725, add 178,000 square feet of space for commercial and resort services, and include 305 acres of open space. Critics object to the high density. Even though Gillett decreased the proposed units last summer and increased open space, the sheer increase in density shocks locals. Planning commissioners asked Targhee to provide 1,750 acres of open space and reduce units to 450. Local supporters applaud the economic development and see the work force housing that the resort will generate as necessary. Some are afraid Gillett will chuck the whole project, selling out to an out-of-state buyer or sell off lots for multi-million dollar homes. Squeak Melehes, owner of Teton TeePee, said, "What I'm afraid of is they will get frustrated and throw the whole thing right out the window and turn it into another Yellowstone Club, selling 100 memberships to the ultra rich, and you and I can never ski at Targhee again." Meanwhile, the Teton County Commissioners ponder the latest proposal while Gillett waits for a response.
- Snow Reports