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Historic Park City Alliance to Revisit Main Street Priorities

Mark Maziarz

The Historic Park City Alliance will continue working with consulting company Wordsearch Place on a new vision for the future of Main Street.

The Historic Park City Alliance is considering a $300,000 proposal from the company for its services.


The process started back in March when the HPCA board began reviewing its priorities for improvements on Main Street. The last visioning process was in 2011 and listed things like more public plazas, sidewalk upgrades, and even an ice skating rink as enhancements to explore.


Alison Kuhlow served as the HPCA executive director until July and said after 10 years, the priorities on Main Street have changed.


“That list was put together in 2011 and then refined once the resort city sales tax was approved in 2012,” she said. “What we feel needs to happen, of course, is yes, a visioning and looking at those projects and looking at how Main Street is. It was close to 10 years ago and no doubt that there are new ideas and other needs that we’ve identified during that time and we’re more than willing to go through that visioning process.”


Funds from the city’s additional resort sales tax -- or ARST -- are earmarked for open space projects and improvements to Main Street and Old Town. Funding for the new visioning could fall under that umbrella.


Wordsearch Place is a London-based consulting firm that specializes in community planning. Their portfolio includes work on the Transamerica Pyramid in San Francisco and town centers in cities across the globe. 


Ginger Wicks is the current HPCA executive director and said with large development projects proposed for the base of Park City Mountain Resort, Deer Valley, and the arts and culture district, the organization wants to strengthen Main Street’s connectivity with those parts of town and ensure it doesn’t get lost in the shuffle of new development.


“We just want to make sure that historic Main Street remains the heart of our community and doesn’t get left behind, so [Wordsearch Place] would help us develop a plan to ensure that that happens,” said Wicks.


The HPCA has been wary of potential competition with Main Street in the past, particularly from the proposed arts and culture district at the corner of Kearns Boulevard and Bonanza Drive. According to the city, the district is not intended to be a commercial center or a direct competitor to Main Street.

Sean Higgins covers all things Park City and is the Saturday Weekend Edition host at KPCW. Sean spent the first five years of his journalism career covering World Cup skiing for Ski Racing Media here in Utah and served as Senior Editor until January 2020. As Senior Editor, he managed the day-to-day news section of skiracing.com, as well as produced and hosted Ski Racing’s weekly podcast. During his tenure with Ski Racing Media, he was also a field reporter for NBC Sports, covering events in Europe.