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Ask Joe: What's going to happen with the Reindeer Lodge?

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One of our viewers, Larry Bandt, wrote in asking what is going on with the Reindeer Lodge.

Here's what I found out:

It took a beating during our severe winter last year. But the question now is will it be cleaned up or torn down anytime soon?

The Reindeer Lodge has been around a long time. It was built back in 1957. It's located about halfway up the Mt. Rose Highway.

It used to be a very popular restaurant, bar and music venue, but the lodge suffered extensive damage during our heavy winter storms last winter. The owner says the weight of the snow snapped a 12-by-20-foot support beam, causing the roof to collapse.

So what's going to happen now? I checked with Washoe County about this. The county has secured the site by putting up fencing and signs around it to keep the public out. That has been the immediate priority.

The county has been working with the property owner since last spring to get the property secured and work on a plan for what the county calls remediation.

By the looks of things, that means demolishing what's left, and the owner, Gary Schmidt, was quoted recently as saying that is the only option. The question is when?

County officials tell me the property owner has until February 28 to obtain a demolition permit. If that doesn't happen he will be fined $100. And then the clean-up process will proceed from there, but that is the next deadline.

So that's where the process stands. The Reindeer Lodge is a piece of our history and it sits on a valuable piece of property, but in its current state, it has to be demolished. It looks like that could happen this spring.

Thanks to Larry Bandt for sending in that question and to Amy Ventetuolo at the County for helping us track down the answers!

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