If you have ever considered expanding or relocating your business to Salt Lake City, now is the time to do it. You may be surprised at the amount of local and national support available to support your project as well as the progress that is being made in these neighborhoods! This week’s highlight is Salt Lake City’s Depot District.
It’s no secret that many (including Millennials) are moving back into the city and we’re seeing a greater desire for people to live and function in urban centers without a vehicle. Salt Lake City’s Depot District is a place that is working to deliver the “live, work, play” urban neighborhood.
A large portion of the Depot District neighborhood has been designated as an official project area of the Redevelopment Agency of Salt Lake City. The Depot District Project Area is located just west of Downtown, covering the area from North Temple to 400 South Street and 400 West Street to Interstate 15. Historically, the area has been part of the City’s industrial and railroad corridor. With the reconstruction of I-15 off-ramps and the consolidation of rail lines along 700 West Street, the improved accessibility of the area has made investment more desirable.
One of the first major developments in the Depot District was The Gateway, located just west of Downtown between North Temple and 200 South, and 400 West and 500 West. In 2001, to spark development on nearly 40 acres of unused land that has previously served as a railyard, the the RDA provided a tax increment reimbursements for numerous elements of the mixed-use Gateway development, including the public plaza and a portion of the construction costs for the underground parking. A more recent Depot District redevelopment project is the aptly named “Station Center,” envisioned to be Salt Lake City’s premier transit-oriented, mixed-use development.
There are a significant number of investment opportunities in the Depot District and as the area continues to grow, the use of these empty parcels, underutilized space, and surface-level parking lots represent a significant opportunity for new office, residential, and retail growth.
Overlap with RDA Project Areas, Opportunity Zones
The entire Depot District Project Area overlaps with a Salt Lake City opportunity zone, a temporary tax deferral for capital gains reinvested. What does that mean for you? By taking on a project in the Depot District you have the opportunity to apply for the (local) RDA’s loan and tax reimbursement programs as well as the (national) opportunity zone incentive. It’s what you might call a “double dip” but time is running out on these programs and we encourage you to act soon.
The idea is that these programs financially support the improvement of existing facilities in order to retain jobs, or add facilities to create more jobs for our economy. Our team is hear to help you navigate all of these programs and answer any questions.
Interest in the Depot District is high, and the community’s vision is being implemented. Here are some highlights:
The Gateway has recently experienced something of a transformation, converting traditional retail space into technology offices, coworking hubs, and artist spaces. Developers now envision it as an 18-hour, mixed-use arts and entertainment center.
Directly adjacent to The Gateway is the forthcoming Union Station Hotel Project, which was approved for an RDA loan to support the adaptive reuse of the historic Union Pacific Station building into an upscale boutique hotel. The hotel will contain guest rooms, will house several new food and beverage offerings, and approximately 6,000 square feet of event and meeting space.
Access to Mass Transit and the Salt Lake Central Station Area Plan
In Salt Lake City and throughout the country there is a growing interest of living close to mass transit. Many residential units have opened or are under construction within a block of the North Temple TRAX and FrontRunner station, since that station opened.
In the Depot District and citywide, facilitating in the development of residential projects that are affordable to a wide breadth of Salt Lake City residents has long been an RDA function. Over the past three years, the RDA has committed approximately $44 million to housing funds and projects, with over $40 million supporting projects containing affordable housing units. Since July 2016, the RDA has supported the planning and creation of 1,950 units, of which 933 qualify as affordable.
Upon being awarded a grant from the Wasatch Front Regional Council’s (WFRC’s) Transportation and Land Use Connection (TLC) program the RDA organized a multi-organizational effort to create an actionable redevelopment plan for the area near the Salt Lake Central Station (Intermodal Hub).
Building upon input gathered from the community and stakeholders (transit riders, future users, future residents) the Salt Lake Central Station Area Project design team recommended an Impementation Plan to redevelop property near two of the City’s most highly used light rail stops: Central Station/Intermodal Hub and North Temple Station. The RDA and UTA are currently determining method for moving forward with development.
Restoration and Artspace
Another great thing about this area? Not-for-profit Artspace has created affordable live and work spaces for artists, cultural organizations, nonprofits, and others to revitalize and promote stable, vibrant, and safe communities.
Two of the three Artspace projects located in the Depot District (City Center and Macaroni Flats) have taken advantage of the national designation to transition warehouse buildings to living- and commercial spaces.
The Artspace Macaroni Flats project that renovated the historic Western Macaroni Manufacturing Company warehouse into 13 affordable living units and eight ground floor small business/artists spaces was made possible in-part by a land writedown by the RDA. Opened in December 2016, Macaroni Flats was the first completed project in the RDA’s Station Center development..
The housing boom continues with three new residential projects as of late and the RDA continues its support of mixed-income and affordable housing developments in the area. It’s all about working to revitalize the City’s neighborhoods and business districts to improve livability, spark economic growth, and foster authentic communities.
Want more information about the Depot District? We’re here to help. Phone: (801) 535-7200 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.