Wasatch Peaks Ranch resort rezoning referendum gets green light from judge

PETERSON, Utah — The future of a luxury Utah ski resort may be in jeopardy due to a legal battle with local residents.

Located in Morgan County, the Wasatch Peaks Ranch sits approximately an hour drive from Park City and 4o minutes from Salt Lake City. The resort first opened for the 2021-22 winter season, and offers its affluent guests 3,000 acres of skiable terrain. The Wasatch Peaks Ranch website describes the resort as “a private community and club in Utah’s Wasatch Mountains where members can enjoy year-round outdoor activities that start with skiing and golf and continue as far as your imagination can take you.”

The Salt Lake Tribune reported earlier this year that a membership in the resort, “designed to cater to the 1% of the 1%,” costs $500,000.

Wasatch Peaks Ranch was built after the Morgan County Council voted to rezone the land it sits on from “forestry” and “multiple-use” to “resort special district” use in Oct. 2019.

In Nov. 2019, five Morgan County residents filed a petition for the rezone to go to a referendum. Their petition was rejected by the county clerk, which resulted in two lawsuits and a three-year legal battle.

On Sept. 15, a judge ruled in favor of allowing the referendum, which would allow Morgan County residents to vote on whether or not they approve of the 2019 rezone.

If a referendum is allowed, the five Morgan County residents would have to gather at least 1,000 signatures to get the rezone on the ballot. If the rezone is denied, the future of Wasatch Peaks Ranch would be up in the air.

Wasatch Peaks Ranch has already appealed the decision. The case will be sent to the Utah Supreme Court.

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