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Category: Infill Development

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Developers look to expand downtown residential offerings on 200 East

Posted 09.26.18 by Isaac Riddle

The 200 South block of 200 East is in the middle of a significant transformation.  The block is beginning attracting developers interested in its proximity to popular bars, restaurants and downtown amenities.  There are currently three residential developments either actively underway or in the planning stages.  The most recent of those is the Moda Luxe, a proposed mixed-use development by JF Capital.

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Commission relaxes public art requirement for senior housing project

Posted 08.24.18 by Isaac Riddle

Local nonprofit, Centro Civico returned again to the Salt Lake City Planning Commission for approval of several new design elements of its proposed senior housing development.  And for the second time, in less than a year the commission approved with conditions their proposed design.

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Historic Union Pacific Depot to become luxury hotel

Posted 08.22.18 by Isaac Riddle

Vestar, the owner of The Gateway, is ready to move forward with the next step in the former mall’s evolution to a lifestyle, arts and entertainment center.  The Arizona-based company has submitted planning documents for their proposed Union Pacific Hotel, an eight-story hotel that will wrap around the west face of the historic Union Pacific Depot.

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Commission Approves Downtown Paper Box Project

Posted 06.15.18 by Isaac Riddle

The next phase of the redevelopment of the area surrounding the intersection of 200 South and 300 West is moving forward. On Wednesday, the Salt Lake City Planning Commission approved a Conditional Building and Site Design Review and Planned Development request by development partners, Clearwater Homes and Peg Development, for the Paper Box Lofts, a mixed-use development proposed for the 100 South block of 300 West.

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Apartments set to replace downtown surface parking lot

Posted 05.23.18 by Isaac Riddle

In the past few years, the area surrounding the intersection of 200 South and 200 East has been booming with new residential development, restaurants and bars bringing vibrancy to a growing node in the city.  Now one of the area’s remaining under-utilized parcels is poised to be developed.

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Downtown group ready to start fundraising for a public market

Posted 03.22.18 by Isaac Riddle

With a revised feasibility study and potentially new branding, officials from the city, Downtown Alliance and GSBS Architects updated the Salt Lake City Council acting as the Board of Directors for the Redevelopment Agency of Salt Lake City (RDA) the status of a proposed year-round public market.

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Developers moving forward with the downtown PaperBox Lofts

Posted 03.20.18 by Isaac Riddle

The area surrounding the intersection of 200 South and 300 West is continuing its evolution from a dead zone to a bridge between the downtown core and the Gateway District.  Development partners, Clearwater Homes and Peg Development, are ready to expand their presence in the area with the PaperBox Lofts, a proposed mixed-use development for the 100 South block of 300 West.

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City looking for developer of State Street Project

Posted 03.05.18 by Isaac Riddle

Six years ago, city officials were celebrating the groundbreaking of the State Street Plaza, a large, mixed-use affordable housing project in the heart of downtown.  After a series of missteps by the project’s developers, La Porte Group, the project went bankrupt leaving several floors of steel and concrete as a reminder of its failure.

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Developers propose city's first high-rise rental project

Posted 02.14.18 by Isaac Riddle

A stalled commercial project will get new life as a residential tower in downtown Salt Lake.  The Boyer Company has partnered with Cowboy Properties to develop Liberty Sky at 151 South State Street, the site of Boyer’s now-canceled 151 office tower.

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Salt Lake City officials hope new plan will increase city’s housing stock

Posted 12.14.17 by Isaac Riddle

In the face of rising rents and an increasingly limited housing supply, the Salt Lake City Council unanimously adopted the Growing SLC Housing Plan that will guide housing policy with for the next five years as the city seeks to increase its housing stock.

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City Council finalizes plans to spend $17 million on housing

Posted 12.08.17 by Isaac Riddle

In one of its final actions with outgoing council members Stan Penfold and Lisa Adams, the Salt Lake City Council decided how to best spend $17.6 million set aside to address the city’s affordable housing crisis.

On Tuesday, the council acting as the board of directors for the city’s redevelopment agency (RDA), approved a budget amendment that will redistribute money to fund two new programs created to incentivize the development of affordable units and fund the redevelopment of several city-owned properties.

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Commission approves large mixed-use, mixed-income Central City project

Posted 12.01.17 by Isaac Riddle

Rendering of the Violin School Commons plaza as would be seen from 200 South. Image courtesy Salt Lake City public documents.
Rendering of the Violin School Commons Development as would be seen from 300 East. Image courtesy Salt Lake City public documents.

More needed affordable housing will soon be underway.  On Wednesday the Salt Lake City Planning Commission unanimously approved with conditions a Planned Development and Preliminary Subdivision request by development partners Cowboy Partners and Form Development for their proposed Violin School Commons project.

The 248 residential unit, mixed-use project will consist of three buildings, two new construction and one adaptive reuse on 2.5 acres at the northeast corner of the 300 East and 200 South intersections.  The project will be mixed-income with 111 affordable units and 137 market rate units.

“We love this neighborhood, we love this place,” said Chris Zarek, a partner at Form Development. “We thought that could certainly use a center and an anchor with open space.”

The three buildings, referred to as the Magnolia, Metropolitan and Liberty Uptown buildings, will be separated by a private street and a public plaza.   While the most visually distinctive feature of the site is arguably the Northwest Pipeline Building, an eight-story midcentury modern midrise tower that was previously the city’s former Public Safety Building, the developers view the proposed Violin School Commons public plaza that will front 200 South as the project’s true centerpiece.  The plaza and project are named after the Violin School across the street on 200 South.

“We turned to the violin school to borrow more of its soul and character,” said Zarek.

The plaza will separate the Metropolitan (formerly the Northwest Pipeline Building) and the Liberty Uptown Building.  The Liberty Uptown will be five stories with a north and south wing that wrap around a parking structure.  The south portion of the building will 200 South with four floors of residential above ground floor retail.  The south portion will open out to the plaza on 200 South.  The north portion will front the private street and will open out to a small courtyard.  The Liberty Uptown will have 109 residential units that will be a mix of market-rate and affordable housing units.

The Metropolitan will be eight stories with ground floor restaurant space.  The Metropolitan will include 74 market-rate residential units.

“The Northwest Pipeline Building was our initial attraction to this project, we love that building and we can’t wait to get our hands on it and rehab it,” said Zarek.

According to Zarek, the developers will consult with Preservation Utah on how to most appropriately restore and convert the Northwest Pipeline Building into a residential development.

The third building, the Magnolia, has been the most controversial for residents as its 65 units will be used as supportive housing for people transitioning out of homelessness.  The design of the proposed six-story building is also visually different from the other two buildings as it features a more historic-looking brick exterior.  The building will also include 1,500 square feet of commercial and social enterprise space for residents and will be managed by the Road Home.

Commission members expressed appreciation for the open space, public plaza, reuse of the Northwest Pipeline Building and the design of the Liberty Uptown.  But several members were concerned about the design of the Magnolia.

“The Magnolia building seems like it dropped in from outer space,” said Commission member Brenda Scheet.  “I don’t think that it is compatible with the building next door to it.  This is an appropriate expression if you want to have a set of buildings that relate to each other in a strong way.”

Scheet recommended that the Magnolia building receive a second look to ensure that it is more compatible with the Metropolitan and Liberty Uptown buildings.

Zarek countered that, while the Magnolia’s design may not relate aesthetically to the adjacent Metropolitan Building, its proposed brick veneer better matches other buildings in the neighborhood.  “You could find three to four other buildings within a block of that building that have a similar style,” he said.

Only two residents spoke during the public hearing, a resident of The Club Condos, a market-rate condominium building directly west of the Magnolia on 300 East and a representative from Preservation Utah.

“We have long been excited about this project,” said David Amott, the preservation programs director for Preservation Utah.  “It offers high-quality public space, mixed housing and, the part we are most excited about, of course, the preservation of the Northwest Pipeline Building.”

The resident of The Club Condos spoke representing the members of the building’s Home Owners Association and voiced concerns about the proposed affordable and supportive housing components in the Violin School Commons development arguing that the neighborhood already has a high rate of subsidized housing.

Despite getting initial approvals, the commission added a condition that will require the developers to return to the planning commission for final approval of revised architectural plans for the project’s ground floor.

The landscaping plans for the Violin School Commons Development. Image courtesy Salt Lake City public documents.
Elevation rendering of the Violin School Commons Development as would be seen from 200 South. Image courtesy Salt Lake City public documents.
Elevation rendering of the Violin School Commons Development as would be seen from 300 East. Image courtesy Salt Lake City public documents.


Tags: Infill Development

Commission approves scaled-down South Temple development

Posted 11.06.17 by Isaac Riddle

A former medical clinic will find a new use as the Historic Landmark Commission unanimously approved a new construction and demolition request for the 508 South Temple residential development, proposed for the southeast corner of the 500 East and South Temple intersection.

The project, by Ivory Homes subsidiary ICO (Ivory Commercial and Multifamily), includes a five-story new construction residential tower above a parking garage and the adaptive reuse of the four-story medical building.  The new tower will have 73 units and the medical building will have 39 units.  The unit mix will be one penthouse suite, 12 studio, 68 one-bedroom, 24 two-bedroom and seven three-bedroom apartments.

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City reveals five sites for proposed affordable housing devleopments

Posted 10.24.17 by Isaac Riddle

With $21 million to spend on affordable housing, the city’s Redevelopment Agency has announced five potential sites for affordable housing projects.  The projects are part of the RDA’s draft housing funding strategy that was created in response to a 2016 council action in which the body acting as the RDA Board of Directors voted reallocated $17 million from other RDA projects as a response to a perceived lack of action from Mayor Jackie Biskupski in addressing the housing crisis.

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Block 67 | The Emerging Sports and Entertainment District

Posted 06.27.17 by Justin Banks

Situated between 100 South and 200 South, and 300 West and 200 West, Block 67 is an important 10-acre block that will help define the emerging sports and entertainment district in west downtown Salt Lake City. With Vivint Smart Home Arena and the Gateway to the West and the Salt Palace Convention Center to the East, block 67 plays an integral part of a vibrant, dynamic urban center...

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Seattle Developers to Build New Downtown Apartments

Posted 04.13.17 by Isaac Riddle

After years of leading best of rankings in business and technology, Salt Lake City is beginning to attract national developers looking invest in the growing city.

“Downtown Salt Lake has emerged as one of the most attractive and affordable places to live for lifestyle-driven professionals from all over the country,” said David Enslow of Timberlane Partners.

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Life on State Survey

Posted 03.14.17 by Justin Banks

Help us better understand what is important to people who live, work, and travel on State Street. Take our short survey below, which includes 14 questions and should only take 5-10 minutes.

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New reports show healthy Salt Lake economy but gaps remain

Posted 03.08.17 by Isaac Riddle

Utah’s economy is booming and the state is experiencing unprecedented growth in tourism and multifamily development.  Two reports released this month, by the Brookings Institute and the University of Utah’s Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute, show that Utah leads in several categories but some disparities continue that could impact the state’s future ability to compete.

According to the 2017 Economic Report to the Governor by the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute...

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HLC approves revised South Temple project

Posted 03.07.17 by Isaac Riddle

What a difference a year can make.  On Thursday representatives of Garbett Home’s received unanimous approval with conditions from the Historic Landmark Commission for the Hardison Apartments at the southwest corner of the 500 East and South Temple intersection.  The hearing was the developer’s fifth visit to the HLC to discuss the Hardison project since December 2015

But unlike a year ago...

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Commission approves extra height for downtown project

Posted 02.24.17 by Isaac Riddle

The Salt Lake City Planning Commission determined that 85 feet is an appropriate height for a proposed residential building in the Depot District in downtown’s west side.  On Wednesday, the commission unanimously approved a Conditional Building and Site Design Review (CBSDR) for the Pierpont Apartments, proposed for the intersection of Pierpont Avenue and 300 West.  The project was approved with the condition that the glass on the ground floor is clear to increase the transparency on the street level.

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Developer wants to build two office towers downtown

Posted 02.13.17 by Isaac Riddle

Downtown Salt Lake’s skyline appears to be extending a bit further south thanks to a proposed office development by Houston-based developers, Patrinely Group.  The developers want to build two ten-story office buildings and two seven-story parking structures on the 600 South block of Main Street.

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Life on State Project

Posted 01.30.17 by Justin Banks

Life on State involves everyone in the community to build a desirable urban district to live, work and play. Salt Lake City and South Salt Lake are working together for positive change as our region continues to grow and develop.

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Commission approves project west of the Gateway

Posted 01.25.17 by Isaac Riddle

Downtown’s westward expansion continues with another multifamily residential project proposed for the area directly west of the Gateway.  The project, West Gateway Commons, is moving forward after the Salt Lake City Planning Commission approved the developer’s planned development request during last Wednesday’s commission meeting...

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Commission Approves Large Mixed-Use Downtown Project

Posted 04.28.16 by Isaac Riddle

The 200 West block of 200 South is one of the least vibrant in downtown Salt Lake.  The block is dominated by dead space: surface parking, suburban style-storage facility, several vacant buildings and an aging office building that is significantly set back from the street level.  On Wednesday, the Salt Lake City Planning Commission approved a conditional site design review (CSDR) for a project that could significantly enhance the vibrancy along this stretch of 200 South.

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Station Center to lead the Depot District's Revival

Posted 04.22.16 by Isaac Riddle

Artists are historically drawn to emerging neighborhoods that offer lower rents and ample workspace.  For this reason Artspace, a nonprofit organization that provides affordable live and work space for artists, has focused on projects in the formerly industrial western edge of downtown Salt Lake.

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SL County Mayor Hopes New DA Offices Boost Downtown Growth

Posted 04.08.16 by Isaac Riddle

Salt Lake County District Attorney’s will soon have office space of their own. After decades of renting space in nearby offices, Salt Lake County officials broke ground Thursday morning on a new District Attorney building at 35 E. 500 South, directly west of the Scott M. Matheson Courthouse. “Renting space is more expensive for us,” said Salt Lake County Mayor, Ben McAdams.  “This is better for our attorneys to do their jobs”

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Convention Center Hotel Committee Selects Local Developer

Posted 03.22.16 by Isaac Riddle

Salt Lake City is closer to getting a new tallest skyscraper.  Salt Lake County officials announced on Monday that the bid committee for the Salt Lake Convention Center hotel have selected DDRM Cos., a real-estate company headquartered in St. George, Utah.

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RDA Revisits Paperbox Proposal

Posted 02.10.16 by Isaac Riddle

In a rare move, the Salt Lake City Council acting as the Redevelopment Agency’s board of directors, reopened discussion on a previously approved resolution while reevaluating the RDA’s role in building affordable housing. The action was at the request of Salt Lake City Mayor, Jackie Biskupski acting as the Chief Administrative Officer.

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City Enters Into Agreement With Developer For Utah Theater Renovation

Posted 01.27.16 by

It didn’t take long for the Salt Lake City Council acting as the board of the Redevelopment Agency (RDA) to unanimously adopt a resolution to enter into an Exclusive Negotiation Agreement with the LaSalle Group for development of the Utah Theater property on the 100 South block of Main Street.

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Commission Approves More Height For Convention Center Hotel

Posted 01.27.16 by Isaac Riddle

On Wednesday, the Salt Lake City Planning Commission voted to forward a favorable recommendation to City Council on a height amendment that would allow for taller building heights in the D-4 zoning district, a seven block area downtown just west of Main Street.

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Top Five Development Stories In 2015

Posted 01.27.16 by Isaac Riddle

Salt Lake City is growing; from Sugar House to Marmalade to Center City, dozens of large multifamily and mixed-use developments are under construction or will be in the new year.  But, based on page visits, salt lake residents seem most interested in the growth happening in downtown.

SL City News published 203 articles in 2015.  The two most-read stories of 2015 were about two proposed downtown skyscrapers.  A new bar on the Center City/downtown border came in third, while the fourth and fifth most-read stories show that interest is growing in developing neighborhoods like Central Ninth.

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RDA Selects Developer for Utah Paperbox Site

Location: Paperbox Development

Posted 01.26.16 by Isaac Riddle

The construction boom at the 100 South block of 300 West looks to continue.  In the past year, two newly -constructed hotels opened at the block’s north end across from the Vivint Smart Home Arena.  On the south end of the block, Clearwater Homes is converting the former Westgate Business Center into the Paragon Station Lofts, a 38 residential-unit development.

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Former Arrow Press Site to Become Temporary Public Space

Posted 12.15.15 by Isaac Riddle

Even though downtown Salt Lake is covered in snow, for historic building preservationists, it may not feel much like Christmas.  After two weeks of demolition, the 107 year-old Arrow Press building, on the 100 South block of West Temple is no more.  Demolition work began December 1st after the building’s owners, real estate firm InterNet Properties, Inc., spent years arguing that that building was unsalvageable and a safety hazard.

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Urban Expert: Downtown Needs More Residential Growth

Posted 07.20.15 by Isaac Riddle

Downtown Salt Lake’s recent growth is just the tip of the iceberg according to Dr. Arthur C. Nelson, a professor of Urban Planning and Real Estate Development at the University of Arizona and former professor of City & Metropolitan Planning at the University of Utah.  Nelson, was the the keynote speaker Friday in the Downtown Alliances’ State of Downtown event at the Depot.   The professor presented his own analysis of downtown Salt Lake and argued that the Utah’s urban center isn’t meeting the growing demand for downtown living.


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Chicago Urban Exploration | Day 2

Posted 05.15.15 by Nick Como

The Downtown Alliance hosts an annual trip with local leaders and elected officials to explore other American cities. This year, we've chosen Chicago, visiting a wide range of the "Windy City". Read about day one here, which finished with a reception at Google's Chicago headquarters. Their open office concept represents a design many other tech firms have mimicked to provide a collaborative and energetic environment for their workers. And the view wasn't bad, either! 

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Chicago Urban Exploration | Day 1

Posted 05.14.15 by Nick Como

The Downtown Alliance hosts an annual trip with local leaders and elected officials to explore other American cities. This year, we've chosen Chicago, visiting a wide range of neighborhoods in the "Windy City". Here's a quick recap of our first day...

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