Wilmington, VT (PRWEB) December 17, 2014
The Hermitage Club disclosed today the scope of the economic stimulus that it has provided to Wilmington and Dover, the southern Vermont towns that were hit hard by Hurricane Irene in August 2011.“The idea was to purchase and then completely rebuild and expand the long closed Haystack Mountain ski area, and transform it into an exclusive, state-of-the-art, environmentally-friendly, four-season private club” commented Dale Ribaudo, senior vice president of the Hermitage Club. Now three years after the initial purchase and beginning its fourth season of operations, total spending from October 2011 through November 2014 has exceeded $ 94 million and has helped to resurrect the local economy.
Prior to the hurricane, the towns of Wilmington and Dover were economically depressed – Wilmington saw a 16% population decrease in population from 2000- 2010, primarily due to lack of jobs, and Dover’s experiences were similar. According to the ‘Summary of the Strategic Economic Development Plan for Dover and Wilmington, Vermont’ developed by the Tri Town Economic Development Committee in December 2009 and assisted by Mullin Associates Inc,. “the towns are in an economic climate of gradual decline that will only continue if they do nothing. They are able to survive recessions and times of severe distress but are unable to regain that which they have lost and are not growing in new areas. The decline is slow and subtle, but constant. They have no choice but to change if they wish to remain vibrant and maintain their quality of life.” Then Hurricane Irene hit – 48 out of 57 buildings were flooded in the Wilmington’s historic business district.
Enter the Hermitage Club – five years after the release of the ‘Strategic Economic Development Plan for Dover and Wilmington’ the Hermitage Club has helped the Deerfield Valley meet many of the recommendations of this extensive study. Since 2011, The Hermitage Club has had the following impact on the local economies:
Spent approximately $ 94 million over the last three years making this the largest real estate development project in Vermont. Of this amount, $ 42 million was for operating costs and $ 52 million was for capital investment.
Hired over 200 local contractors in “Green” construction projects
Created employment for 268 people at the Club
Generated local property taxes to the towns of Wilmington and Dover on club owned property and real estate sold to club members that will approach $ 900,000 per year by June 2015
Paid over $ 400,000 to the state of Vermont for transfer and land gains taxes for the period 2011-2014
Paid $ 1.1 million in sales, meals &amp;amp;amp; room taxes to the state of Vermont for the period 2011-2014
Paid $ 191,000 in sales, meals &amp;amp;amp; room taxes to Wilmington &amp; Dover for the period 2011-2014
Paid permitting expenses of over $ 700,000
Invested over $ 2 million in marketing and communications over the past two years, branding the club and promoting the Deerfield Valley throughout the Northeast
Built a luxurious 80,000 square foot ‘Green’ clubhouse / base lodge that is the largest post and beam structure east of the Mississippi River
Purchased, expanded and increased the safety of the Deerfield Valley Airport
Contributed to and supported the Deerfield Valley Trail expansion – The recreational trail between Wilmington and Dover for hikers and bicycles
Attracted new investors to the area that have recognized the opportunity of a revitalized community and subsequently purchased several area businesses that are now undergoing renovations.
In the spring of 2014, the Deerfield Valley Chamber of Commerce released the Deerfield Valley Economic and Demographic Prospectus – This report was designed to “help prospective entrepreneurs and investors assess the current economic trends in the region.” This report noted “there is a new sense of optimism pulsing throughout the community,” and referenced the extensive contribution of the Hermitage Club. The summary stated “Unlike historic real estate expansions, these investments intended to build infrastructure for long term, sustained growth in the region.”
About The Hermitage Club
The Hermitage Club at Haystack Mountain is a 1,400-acre enclave in the Deerfield Valley of Southern Vermont. The Club, located in the towns of West Dover and Wilmington, VT, provides members with four seasons of private mountain activities, luxury accommodations and a worry free, safe environment for families of all generations. The exclusive private club community celebrates the outdoors and family fun, with activities ranging from alpine skiing and boarding to cross country skiing and snowshoeing. The Club has also recently added a variety of summer water and mountain adventure activities including hiking, swimming and kayaking in addition to golfing at its 18-hole championship golf course. The Club opened a new 80,000 square foot Clubhouse this past weekend. The facility includes multiple dining options, a full fitness area, spa, children’s center, bowling alley, 45-seat movie theatre, GoPro editing suites and a retail store. The new clubhouse, combined with the residential construction taking place at The Club, qualifies as the largest real estate construction project in southern Vermont and has attracted the interest of those interested in Vermont ski resort real estate. The Hermitage Club is the fastest growing company in Vermont and was recently named to Inc. Magazine’s Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing private companies in the United States.