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archived projects

older projects of interest

Redevelopment of Vail's Lionshead Village

In 1996 the town of Vail began research and plans for the complete redevelopment of the Lionshead area. In 2004 the plan was being finalized with designs for structures and landscaping nearing completion. One of the lead design consultants for the city was Jeff Winston of Winston Associates. I had already done a number of visualizations, some in Vail, for Jeff. He determined it was time for some detailed fly-throughs showing the final product, placed in an accurate model of the existing environment and terrain with all the buildings and details. The overall redevlopment was estimated at $400 million with a number of large companies heavily invested in the project. In these final design months many details were constantly in flux, from a variety of sources. A real challenge. I remember the complex terrain was a special problem, having to come up with some special methods to carve out all the detail and then revise it later. In an early phase of the project we applied the architects drawings directly to the buildings. Part of the reason was psychological, to convey to the viewer that the plans weren't done yet. At this early stage I was even part of the public design review process, having my 3D model open in 3ds Max, projected onto a large screen during meetings. I never forgot this and it reminded me to focus on finding a real-time software solution in the future. Of course 10 years later we finally got UE4 but I had fiddled with all the competitors in between. In the last phase of the project I completed the models of the buildings as needed with revisions and proper 3D mapping. In 2004 this project was probably my largest and most complex undertaking and large scale visualizations were still a big challenge, especially for my one man studio. As construction started (and sales of condos in the new Arrabelle Hotel began), my renderings became part of a larger video presentation for the public, available to view in the sales offices at the entrance to Lionshead Village. It's always interesting to visit a place after the construction is finished and see what became of it. With the location in Vail, just off I-70, over the years I would frequently check in on the project on my way west.

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