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Park City Council to consider new public-private affordable housing project

Park City Hall
KPCW
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Park City Hall

The Park City Council will take up a new potential affordable housing project at its regular meeting Thursday as it continues efforts to alleviate the worsening workforce housing crisis. 

In a work session Thursday night, the city council will explore possibilities for a piece of city-owned land at 7700 Marsac Ave. The city is looking at another public-private partnership such as the one it entered into to build the Homestake housing project between Kearns and Bonanza near The Boneyard.

City Manager Matt Dias said there are big questions about the land’s suitability for a housing project. Known as the Mine Bench property, it was long home to mining operations, so parts of it contain mine shafts and contaminated soil. But it may have some developable areas above the mine structures still visible along Marsac Ave.

Considering that piece of land for this sort of development is in the very early stage – the council won’t take action Thursday. Dias said any development would need private sector leadership and financial outlay.

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“This is potentially a way to work with the private sector to have them incur all of the entitlement, the soil obligations, realigning any trails, but again, put us in the driver's seat,” Dias said. “So the benefit here is we could potentially put a call out for proposals and review those and see what we liked and didn't liked before engaging in any contractual terms or anything like that. So really, it’s yet another opportunity to spin more plates towards our aggressive housing goals, and it may or may not work, to be quite frank.”

He suggested anyone interested go to the city’s web site and review the detailed report on the property, which is contained in Thursday’s meeting agenda. He said the city has heard from some local employers who might want to get involved in developing workforce housing, and that he believed this project would be 100 % affordable, with a sliding scale of rents based on income.

The next step is for the council to direct city staff to ask for proposals from any would-be developers.

Also in its work session the council is set to interview a second batch of applicants for four open slots on the city Planning Commission. Ten people have applied, and interviews began last month. After all applicants have been interviewed, the council will make selections.

And finally the council will consider paying a quarter of a million dollars to settle a claim made by an unnamed party stemming from a personal injury lawsuit. That’s related to a bicycle accident that happened on Lowell Ave in August of 2020 amid storm drain repairs.

The settlement money will come from the city’s Risk Management Fund.

The hybrid meeting will be held in person in the council chambers at 445 Marsac Ave as well as on Zoom. The work session starts at 2:20 p.m. and the regular meeting begins at 6 p.m., with public comment on items not on the agenda set for sometime after 6 p.m.

To view the agenda go to parkcity.org.

Michelle, who joined KPCW in 2021, arrived in Utah in 2018 by way of Massachusetts, where the skiing was icy and the mosquitoes formidable. A former daily newspaper reporter and editor (at the Visalia Times-Delta in CA) and columnist (at The Cohasset Mariner in MA), Michelle has been a writer and editor for decades. She holds a journalism degree from CSU Fresno and has worked as a journalist, freelance writer and web content creator, reporting extensively on education and youth along with general assignment and breaking news.