While a large-scale concert in Pemberton next summer may be exciting for some, at least one member of the SLRD board is hesitant about the idea.
During Monday’s SLRD meeting, Whistler Mayor Ken Melamed questioned a motion to support the three-day festival, which concert promoter Live Nation is proposing to hold in Area C in July.
Melamed asked for clarification on what type of support the board would be offering — financial or otherwise — and raised questions about sustainability. He pointed out the board was missing important information about policing costs and waste removal, and should be ensuring the event will be “green” and will not negatively impact the corridor.
Pemberton Mayor Jordan Sturdy quickly pointed out that Whistler events are not subject to such scrutiny at SLRD meetings, and that the joint operations committee has already approved the proposed festival.
Susie Gimse, director of Area C, agreed there were some problems to be worked through, but said she was left with the impression that Live Nation representatives are aware of these issues and are working to resolve them.
While the festival will cost about $5 million, Gimse said these costs will be borne by the organizers, and the economic benefits to the community would be enormous.
Gimse also suggested council invite representatives from Live Nation to the next SLRD meeting to quell some of these fears, but the motion was opposed, as Squamish Mayor Ian Sutherland pointed out it would only be fair to require all organizers planning events in the corridor to make presentations to council.
The SLRD board passed a motion to support the Pemberton summer music festival in principle.