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Summit County, Dakota Pacific agree to pause litigation until October, will keep talking

Dakota Pacific Real Estate is proposing to develop on over 50 acres at Kimball Junction that is currently undeveloped.
Dakota Pacific Real Estate
Dakota Pacific Real Estate is proposing to develop on over 50 acres at Kimball Junction that is currently undeveloped.

Pending litigation between Summit County and a Salt Lake-based developer has been delayed again, while the two parties negotiate behind closed doors.

The lawsuit Summit County filed against Dakota Pacific Real Estate last March was set to resume Saturday, June 8.

But it’s been delayed another four months while county officials continue negotiations with the developer over the 50 acres around Skullcandy’s headquarters in Kimball Junction.

Dakota Pacific hopes to build housing there, even though its current development agreement only allows tech offices. In 2023, it lobbied for legislation that would award it those development rights.

Summit County sued when Senate Bill 84 became law and has blocked it thus far.

Now, at the behest of the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Casey Snider, the parties are back at the negotiating table. They first agreed to pause litigation last December.

The latest motion to stay, accepted by 3rd District Judge Richard Mrazik May 30, pauses the lawsuit until October 8.

“We're still talking to each other and seeing if we can find a solution here,” Councilmember Roger Armstrong said during KPCW’s Local News Hour June 6.

The council and developer convened a private subcommittee in April after negotiating publicly off-and-on for four years.

The county’s latest ask is for Dakota Pacific to help expand the Kimball Junction Transit Center, in exchange for the right to build housing nearby.

It may involve the two parties swapping land. In that scenario, Dakota would receive the Sheldon Richins building to redevelop.

“They sat with it for a while and came back and said, ‘There's a lot here to unpack. It’s interesting. We don't quite understand the land swap and what you hope to accomplish there and how that works,” Armstrong explained.

The council approved up to $30 million in bonds June 5 to purchase the nearby Skullcandy headquarters, which could become the new Richins Building in the event of a land swap.

Councilmembers Chris Robinson and Canice Harte represent the council on the subcommittee, which also includes Dakota Pacific and county employees.

The council has stressed the subcommittee will not make decisions; any ideas developed in private will be discussed and vetted at public meetings.

County Community Development Director Pat Putt said on Local News Hour June 5 he expects the council to discuss Dakota Pacific’s proposal in public soon, just not in the month of June.

The developer did not immediately respond to a request for comment June 6, but KPCW will update this story if and when it does.

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