In the summer of 1916 a German immigrant named Spiro began to dig a tunnel on the north side of Park City's Treasure Mountain looking for silver ore. By 1924, the price of silver was low, and Spiro had to sell his claims to the Silver King Mining Company. Silver King used Spiro's tunnel for over 30 years in their operations on Treasure Mountain. Along with using it to drain water from the mines, they used the tunnel extensively to transport miners, machinery, and supplies into the mine and ore and waste rock out. In the 1930's the current buildings were constructed providing change rooms for the miners, a compressor plant and a machine shop. These buildings were a major part of mining operations until 1953.
In 1953 Silver King Company stopped operation and in 1963, Park City Mountain Resort opened for business. The Spiro tunnel was still used as a way to transport skiers until 1978 when the tunnel was permanently closed due to a cave in.
Paladin Development acquired the site with 3 derelict buildings, 2 tunnel portals, and an enormous pile of rock. The principals were determined to create a lasting benefit for the community by restoring the old mining buildings along with their new development. After restoring the exterior and adding insulation to make the conditions bearable, the old machine shop is now the home of the Sundance Institute and the Sundance Film Festival. Another building is now a ticket office for Sundance in the winter and a home to an Artist in Residence program in the summer.
Silver Star was once a collection of old buildings and debris. Today it is a community asset and one of the foremost physical memories that sustain the mining history of Park City.