Town & County

Joint meeting: ‘Olympics narrative needs to shift’

PARK CITY, Utah — The Park City Council and Summit County Council held a joint meeting Tuesday morning in the Marsac Building.

Outside of tourism and transportation topics, a follow-up discussion was held about the joint meeting the two bodies participated in with the Salt Lake City-Utah Committee for the Games in February. They discussed a future Olympic bid for 2030 or 2034, which would involve local venues like Utah Olympic Park, Deer Valley Resort, and Park City Mountain.

Park City Mayor Nann Worel said that the elected officials’ question is, “what level of participation does Park City want to have?” And “What outcomes does Park City want to have should the state of Utah receive the bid.”

Summit County Councilmember Roger Armstrong said the most startling thing he heard at the February meeting was the committee’s president and CEO, Fraser Bullock, asserting that they don’t have to build anything.

“Because we talked about affordable housing,” Armstrong said, referring to a plan to convert athlete housing to affordable units. “I don’t know if it’s a blanket statement.”

“What’s going to happen is the fact that we as a county, they as a ski resort, anybody who runs a hotel, will do 25% less business in the Olympic year than they do on a regular,” Summit County Council member Doug Clyde said.

Park City Councilmember Max Doilney said it’s critical that they are represented if chosen, which he noted is out of their control. “Yeah, maybe we’re going to see a hit. Let’s give them that insight upfront,” he said of the economic hit the year of the Games.

“The opportunity for us to work with the Legislature in Utah doesn’t come around that often because we don’t see eye-to-eye on a lot of things,” Doilney said.

“But on this, there seems to be some synergy. There seems to be some opportunities where maybe the door is cracked open, and we can find some common ground.”

“There might be more strategic partnerships that can happen in the private sector versus saying — how much money is … the federal government going to give us? Maybe there’s opportunities with that go more into affordable housing and transportation with big, private companies that will see this as an opportunity,” Park City Council member Tana Toly said.

“We do need to shift the narrative here,” Park City Councilmember Jeremy Rubell said, “It’s not — Do we want the Olympics to come to Park City and Summit County? It’s how are we going to manage the impact of it?”

“I’d love us to get away from the — should we have the Olympics?”

Park City Mayor Nann Worel proposed that the two bodies return to meet in the next quarter. She said she wants to “dive deep” into affordable housing and discuss what a regional housing authority would look like.

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