“This summer, ground will be broken on a public village envisioned as a next-generation alpine town at Powder Mountain in Utah. Picture a vehicle-free Main Street lined with farm-to-table restaurants and pop-up stores and co-working spaces and second-story condos. It will have funding for public art and only environmentally responsible hotels; naturally, the cafes will provide almond milk without your having to ask for it. A mash-up of postmillennial civic and lifestyle ideas, with an ethos of social entrepreneurism: Telluride meets the Mission District, perhaps.
Possessing a deed and a blank canvas for their intellectual enclave, Powder’s owners had set out looking for inspiration. They visited Aspen, Colo., where in the 1950s Walter Paepcke, a Chicago industrialist, founded the Aspen Institute, attracting America’s cultural elite to the town long before Aspen became a metaphor for something that involved Prada. They also admired the pedestrian-friendly Swiss Alps towns Mürren and Wengen, and saw resemblances in the cascading hillside topography of Positano, Italy.
“We crowdsourced the funding, the development, the design, the architecture,” Mr. Bisnow said. “For us, it was to say: ‘Hey, this month we’re really diving into land planning. Who are the best land planners in the world?’ ”
They worked with the land-planning company Hart Howerton of New York, whose portfolio includes Montana’s Yellowstone Club, and Langvardt Design of Salt Lake City.
Eron Ashley, a principal of Hart Howerton, said, “There was a lot of collective searching for a physical place,” adding that the owners did not want it to “feel like a traditional, prefabricated ski town.”
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