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Homestead Resort expansion plans move forward in approval process

The Homestead Resort, located in Midway, has made a recent impact on average daily rate, which the Heber Valley Chamber of Commerce says impacts other local economic trends.
Ben Lasseter
The Homestead Resort, located in Midway, is asking the city to approve its plans to expand.

Midway’s Homestead Resort is planning to expand.

Earlier this spring, Homestead applied to amend its master plan, but the Midway planning commission wasn’t ready to recommend the resort’s proposed changes – commissioners were worried about a proposal to build homes on part of the property’s designated open space.

Since then, Homestead has changed course. It withdrew its application for amendments to the master plan, instead revising its plans to match its current agreement with the city.

The Midway City Council granted preliminary approval to the plans during its meeting June 4.

Out of the property’s 72 acres, the revised proposal maintains almost 56 acres of open space.

Homestead wants to build 68 condo units, seven single-family residential units and several new resort amenity buildings, including indoor pickleball courts and a restaurant.

Midway planning director Michael Henke told the city council the condo units will not permit full-time residents.

“These units couldn’t be lived in. They need to be put in a rental pool,” he said. “If somebody does own a unit, they can only stay in that unit for, I think, two or three weeks out of the year at most – somewhere around there…. It keeps taxes lower for the rest of the community by having these resort pods around Midway.”

If the plans receive final approval, the resort will add 139 new rooms, but some of its neighbors object to the expansion.

Brian Andrews spoke up during public comment to criticize the density of the new condos.

“It’s up to you, but doesn’t feel like it’s great for the city,” he said. “To me, it affects the fabric of the city.”

Homestead also intends to invest in its leisure infrastructure, including building a long-promised trail along Homestead Drive, improving its golf course and opening new swimming pools later this summer.

The resort is expected to join Marriott’s Autograph Collection following some renovations.

Water rights are the main question yet to be resolved with the city. The resort leases some water rights from Wasatch Mountain State Park, but their agreement expires a little over 20 years from now, so Homestead will need a longer-term solution.

“It’s difficult to find water rights these days in Midway – in the whole valley, really,” Henke said. “But there are options. We’ve seen developers get pretty creative on getting water rights to Midway. So that’s something for the city council to consider is how the water rights are looked at with this.”

Next, the application will return to the planning commission for the final approval process, likely in July. The planning commission will forward its recommendation to the Midway City Council for a final vote.

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