[R80R, Brian Head Resort], in southern Utah, has been busy putting final touches on their expansion that connected Navajo and Giant Steps ski mountains in the 2007-08 winter season.

The initial step is part of a grand expansion as the resort hit up the Town of Brian Head for a development agreement that would let resort owners level the existing Giant Steps day lodge and construct a world-class ski village at the base of the Giant Steps lift.

A condominium hotel with main floor commercial space for improved and conveniently located skier services, including more than 20,000 square feet for food and beverage, ski rental and retail, and additional space for hotel-related commercial areas are in the works. Of course, there should be plenty of parking with 475 new spaces at the Navajo Lodge area and near the Resort's Maintenance facility adjacent to Chair 2 at mid-mountain.

On board for the design is Hart Howerton, an internationally-recognized ski resort design firm responsible for projects in Vail, Arrowhead, and Bachelor Gulch in Colorado, Northstar at Lake Tahoe, and Spanish Peaks and Yellowstone Club in Montana. They say the Ski Village will take on a "National Park architecture theme," including large roof structures with gables, a heavy stone base, and the use of natural wood and stone materials.

The design should preserve substantial open space, and skier and pedestrian circulation areas and connections to neighboring properties. Considering how barren Brian Head is presently, these plans to add rooms, restaurants, and stores could turn the resort into a major destination for visitors beyond Las Vegas. BH is still awaiting a final decision.