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Dakota Pacific, Summit County resume Kimball Junction public talks

tech center dr landmark dr intersection colored .jpg
Connor Thomas
Dakota Pacific's proposed mixed-use neighborhood would surround Tech Center Drive. The roughly 50 acres are currently zoned for tech offices, but only the audio hardware firm Skullcandy has moved in.

Negotiations over a new neighborhood development in Kimball Junction are resuming after almost a year.

Dakota Pacific Real Estate owns roughly 50 undeveloped acres on the west side of Kimball Junction near the Skullcandy headquarters.

Since at least 2019, the developer has been trying to get that area rezoned for a mixed-use development, with a park, residences and retail space.

Now Dakota Pacific is back at the Summit County Council to reach some kind of agreement. The discussions start at the Jan. 17 council meeting.

These talks carry baggage. Dakota Pacific has presented two development plans, both receiving some community opposition, uncertainty from local elected officials and eventually a lawsuit from the county attorney.

Last year, Summit County accused the developer of going to the Utah legislature to get its land spot-zoned instead of sticking to the rezoning process at the county council. In June, Third District Court nullified the 2023 state bill which would have forced development.

It was an early win for the county in the pending lawsuit. Then in December, Dakota Pacific and Summit County agreed to pause their lawsuit at the request of an unknown member of the state legislature.

The two began private talks to identify key issues and agree on the process going forward, which will be public.

Key issues include density—some opposed to the project say 1.3 million square feet, including 727 residential units, is too much.

Traffic—the opposition says changes to Kimball Junction would be required to support an estimated 1,500 new residents.

Environment—residents also share common concerns about water use and losing open space.

But Dakota Pacific has the rights to build something on the land. And supporters say housing is preferable to the offices and parking currently entitled, as the housing crisis locally requires businesses to import thousands of workers from outside the county daily.

33% of the development’s housing would be reserved for lower income residents. Councilmembers have asked the developer in past meetings whether it could increase the ratio of affordable units to market rate.

A county staff report shows Councilmember Roger Armstrong and Dakota Pacific CEO Marc Stanworth will present Jan. 17. Both men respectfully declined to comment ahead of the meeting.

It will be held at the Sheldon Richins Building in Kimball Junction at 1:50 p.m., and via video conferencing.

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