Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Utah - Prison - TOD

Which one of these is not like the other one? Draper City Council (Outside Salt Lake City) decided to move a prison. The reason? The land at the end of the line where a prison sits was getting valuable. Double bonus, the Draper Trax line ending there.

Salt Lake City-based Realtor Tom Cook, of Commerce CRG, agrees that the land may have grown more valuable. Depending on the zoning and amount of commercial space, the 673 acres the prison sits on could be worth $4-$5 per square foot, he said. The 2005 study found the land to be worth $2.50 per square foot.

Cook is currently working with a client developing land immediately adjacent to the prison site and said that land, zoned for commercial use, is priced in the double digits per square foot.

However, Draper could have trouble brining in additional commercial developments unless additional housing is built, Cook said. Housing built on prison land would increase the area's population and make big-box retail more feasible, he added.


The Draper and county resolutions contain clauses that suggest the site could be used for state university facilities or research-based centers. The resolutions also mention the possibility of mixed-use development and recommend a commuter rail line be planned to stop in the area. A sentence recommending using 100 acres of the land, perhaps for a state sports complex, was added to the Draper city resolution at the last minute.

A light-rail line to end at the point of the mountain — where the prison sits — is already planned.

I sure hope they don't build a bunch of big box stores at the end of the line. I do like the idea of University or research institutions. But the future will show what comes out of this situation.

1 comment:

JMD said...

I wouldn't hold my breath. Draper subsidized the construction of a new IKEA store last year.

Draper is also looking to increase property taxes 67% because the need of additional infrastructure needed. All the new retail is not creating enough sales tax revenue to cover all the cost they create (big surprise?).