|Whistler's now completed pedestrian village|
Ski, Esq. notes a thoughtful piece in Pique magazine penned by Bob Barnett. Barnett, discussing the recent bankruptcy filing by Mammoth Lakes discussed by Ski, Esq. on Tuesday, posits that the resort village of Whistler, BC experienced similar problems and only narrowly avoided bankruptcy some 30 years ago during a similar economic downturn.
"Thirty years ago, the fledgling ski town of Whistler was very close to bankruptcy. Construction of the first few buildings in the new Whistler Village had been completed but the recession had killed investors' appetites for more. Several foundations had been poured and then abandoned. Rebar lined what is now Village Stroll between Village Square and Mountain Square. Investors, developers and the Resort Municipality of Whistler itself were slowly bleeding to death."
How then did Whistler manage to avoid bankruptcy? Simple. According to Barnett, the provincial government stepped in with a bail-out.
Ski, Esq. thinks the odds of a similar solution for Mammoth Lakes to be infinitesimally small. California is in far worse shape today than British Columbia was in the 1980's. Futhermore, as numerous California towns teeter on the edge of bankruptcy, bailing out one would likely mean bailing out all - something the state certainly cannot afford.