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Local News

Park City area targeted for new liquor store

Swede Alley Liquor store
Michelle Deininger
/
KPCW
The state liquor store on Swede Alley pictured in January 2022. State officials targeted the Park City area as one of the next two spots in the state for a new liquor store, though they specified no location or timeline.

The Park City area is one of two locations the state liquor agency is eyeing for a new store.

In a presentation to a legislative committee last week, the deputy director of the state Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, Cade Meier, shared some news that might make some Parkites raise a glass.

“Proposed this year, we're asking for two other stores: one in St. George market area and one in the Park City market area,” Meier said. “These stores are important because when they go in, they really help the demand placed on other store locations that are out there.”

Documents accompanying the presentation show the request to be for the 2023 fiscal year, which runs from July 1, 2022, to June 30, 2023.

The agency’s Communications Director Michelle Schmitt said there were no details yet about where the store might go or when it might open — or even a guarantee it would happen.

But she said, if it does, the store would have refrigerators, something that the agency first debuted last year in Taylorsville.

“All of our new stores, including if there was an additional Park City store, will include refrigerated beer,” Schmitt said.

That’s something that DABC Executive Director Tiffany Clason told KPCW earlier this month that customers had wanted for decades. Clason said the agency had a plan to retrofit existing liquor stores with refrigerators, but Schmitt made clear that was dependent on budget.

“There are no plans to renovate stores now,” Schmitt said. “But there are discussions about that, if funding becomes available to retrofit existing stores, to also include the coolers.”

Clason told the legislative committee some of the agency's practices are outdated. She said the agency uses price scanners that are 25 years old, keeps its files in manila envelopes and filing cabinets and cannot process credit card payments for applications over the phone or online. That can make the process onerous for business owners who may have to drive to Salt Lake City to submit forms.

Utah tightly regulates alcoholic beverages. Clason said when Gov. Spencer Cox visited a liquor store in Hurricane this summer, he was the first sitting Utah governor to do so.