Denver, Intrawest complete Winter Park pact

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Denver, Colo. (from SAM) -- Officials from Denver, Intrawest, and Winter Park have reached agreement on terms of Intrawest's 50-year lease of Winter Park.

Under terms of the agreement, Intrawest plans to invest $99 million in capital improvements over the next 10 years, of which $50 million will be invested on-mountain. Intrawest also pledges to invest six percent of gross revenue for capital maintenance annually. Intrawest also agrees to continue support for the National Sports Center for the Disabled and children's recreational programs.

Intrawest's lease payments are $3 million in the first year, then $2 million for the next nine years; thereafter, the lease is $2 million a year plus three percent of gross revenues over $33 million. Winter Park has grossed in the neighborhood of $40 million for the past few years.

Before the agreement can take effect, the Denver City Council must approve it, and it is subject to possible challenge from Vail Resorts, which has an agreement of its own with Intrawest. Terms of an agreement between the two resort companies stemming from their joint venture at Keystone prohibit either resort company from developing real estate in Grand County, where Winter Park resides, unless it has a controlling interest in the resort, and Vail CEO Adam Aron has vowed to fight the Winter Park agreement on that point.