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Video: Business Leaders Discuss Progress of Downtown Rising Vision

Utah Pulse, 05/27/2010

The construction and economic development of Salt Lake City’s downtown is on schedule, and Utah’s Capital City has become a destination city for businesses looking to relocate. That was the message that surfaced during a roundtable discussion sponsored by the Downtown Alliance, held today in the law offices of Holland & Hart LLP, located at 222 Main.

Roundtable panel members included economic development, real estate, legal, and commercial development experts and interests downtown:

Business leaders included Bob Springmeyer, Principal of Bonneville Research

Bob Springmeyer - Downtown Roundtable from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.


URL: http://utahpulse.com/featured_article/video-business-leaders-discuss-progress-downtown-rising-vision
 


OUR VIEW: Consensus in Ogden


Last Edit: Apr 27 2010 - 9:59pm

 

Politics in Ogden can get heated at times. Sometimes it's good to have sharp differences of opinion. Other times it enables both sides of an argument to accomplish nothing. However, we are pleased to see a potentially divisive issue -- declaring a four-block area in the east-central part of Ogden as blighted -- pass by a solid 5-2 city council vote.

The Ogden City Council, in its capacity as the redevelopment agency board, gave the OK to set the area between 20th and 24th Streets between Washington Boulevard and Adams Avenue as an urban renewal area. That makes that part of Ogden eligible to receive tax increment financing.

The city leadership, as well as a Salt Lake City company, Bonneville Research, which conducted a study for the city, believes that the blight designation helps with a future urban renewal plan.

Five city council members -- Bart Blair, Brandon Stephenson, Doug Stephens, Neil Garner and Caitlin Gouchnour -- agreed, voting for the blight designation. Council members Susie Van Hooser and Amy Wicks voted no.

The council's majority is correct on this vote. As mentioned, we are pleased to see a 5-2 margin, which indicates a strong consensus to further economic growth in Junction City. Having said that, the Ogden city administration needs to deliver on its promise to revitalize the area. There needs to be pressure on the administration to deliver economic regrowth, particularly since the development may be close to a future trolley transit route.

Some business owners in the area expressed discomfort with the term blight, but that term is not directed at any particular business. The blight designation can actually help lead the area to new development. No property in the blight area is slated to be acquired via eminent domain and the new projects that occur in the blight area will hopefully lead to extra property tax revenue. Attaining that tax revenue is the responsibility of the city and private businesses. Now that the city council has come through with its vote, the promise of economic growth needs to be fulfilled.

ARTICLE URL: http://www.standard.net/topics/opinion/2010/04/27/our-view-consensus-ogden

Fairchild Manufacturing plant gets tax breaks, state incentive to stay in West Jordan

Deseret News, Thursday, April 15, 2010 5:03 p.m. MDT

WEST JORDAN — Without an incentive from the state and another from this growing city and Jordan School District, the Fairchild Manufacturing facility would move its plant and the 473 jobs that go with it to Bucheon, South Korea.

But in a deal in the works since last fall, the semiconductor facility will stay put and add 65 new production and engineering positions over the next few years at a cost of about $52.8 million. In exchange, the company will receive up to $1.2 million in property tax breaks from West Jordan, Jordan School District and other taxing entities, such as the local mosquito abatement district and the Salt Lake County library system. The money will come from increased property tax receipts as the value of the building increases over the next 10 years.

The full-time jobs will come with full benefits packages and are expected to pay 127 percent of the median county wage, according to an analysis by redevelopment specialist Bob Springmeyer.

The terms were approved unanimously Wednesday night by the West Jordan City Council, acting as the city redevelopment agency. The board members created an economic development area for the project.

"Everyone working together allows this to happen," said John Hall, vice president of the global company. "We have a safe, highly skilled work force (in Utah). Fairchild loves Utah and loves being in Salt Lake. We hope to be here for a long time."

Fairchild also is getting about $2.5 million from the state as an incentive to stay put and retool its facility to make larger parts. The $2.5 million in state money was conditional upon West Jordan's creation of the economic development area, according to staff reports.

To hear an audio recording of Wednesday's meeting or to read Springmeyer's report, visit wjordan.com.

e-mail: rpalmer@desnews.com

 

Four-block Ogden area designated as blighted; redevelopment to renew downtown

By Scott Schwebke (Standard-Examiner staff)
Last Edit: Apr 14 2010 - 9:53am


OGDEN -- By a 5-2 vote, the city council, acting as the municipality's redevelopment agency board, agreed Tuesday night to declare a four-block area in the east-central section of the city as blighted.

City council members who voted against the designation were Susan Van Hooser and Amy Wicks.

The blight designation opens the door for development of a proposal to make the area between 20th and 24th streets from Washington Boulevard to Adams Avenue an urban renewal area.

The area would then be eligible for tax increment financing for commercial and residential property owners, which could help spark long-awaited revitalization in the east-central section of the city, said Mayor Matthew Godfrey.

"The only way to revitalize is if we have a tool," he said.

Jonathan L. Springmeyer, vice president of Salt Lake City-based Bonneville Research, which did the study, said the blight designation is needed as a precursor for development of an urban renewal plan.

The blight designation is meant to describe the condition of the area as a whole and is not intended to degrade any single property, he said.

Springmeyer said the area, which encompasses about 37 acres and 204 parcels, qualifies for blight designation because it meets the following standards:

  • SBlt Consists primarily of nongreen field parcels.
  • SBlt Is zoned for urban purposes.
  • SBlt At least 50 percent of the parcels contain non-agricultural or non-accessory buildings intended for residential, commercial or industrial uses.
  • SBlt The present condition or use of the project area substantially impairs the growth of the municipality.

Some property owners who attended Tuesday night's meeting in the packed city council chambers questioned how their individual properties fit in with the blight designation.

John Bowen questioned during the meeting why his building at 2336 Washington Blvd. was mistakenly noted in the blight report as having graffiti.

Springmeyer said the graffiti should have been attributed to a building north of Bowen's, but added the mistake doesn't change the fact that the area is blighted.

Janith Wright, owner of Clifton's, a clothing store at 2254 Washington Blvd., said she also doesn't like the stigma of having her business in a blighted area.

Richard McConkie, the city's executive director of community and economic development, said the development of an urban renewal project proposal will put the east-central area on the pathway to revitalization through the use of tax increment.

"It's not acceptable," he said of the current condition of the area. "It has the potential. The property owners deserve better."

Tax increment financing is the extra property tax revenue generated by new development in a blighted area.

He has also said there are no plans to use an urban renewal project to acquire property in the area through eminent domain.

Related link: This article is a topic of discussion at Weber County Forum.

ARTICLE URL:http://www.standard.net/topics/construction/2010/04/13/four-block-ogden-area-designated-blighted-redevelopment-renew-downtow

 

In Images: 2nd Stakeholder Meeting - Meridian, Idaho

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The October Stakeholder Meeting began with Bob Springmeyer of Bonneville Research presenting an overview of the economic and demographic profile of Meridian as part of the Market Analysis and Strategy for Downtown.

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