Daly Avenue is next for Talisker | ParkRecord.com

Daly Avenue is next for Talisker

by Jay Hamburger OF THE RECORD STAFF

Empire Pass developer Talisker on Wednesday will unveil its idea to build a work force housing project at the southern tip of Old Town, a project that the company hopes will fulfill some of its required worker housing but one that might leave neighbors dismayed.

Talisker is scheduled to approach the Park City Planning Commission at a meeting starting 6:30 p.m. in Room 205 at the Park City Library and Education Center. The developer wants to build eight units in four duplexes at 375 Daly Ave., at the end of the narrow street just south of Main Street. Four would be one-bedrooms and the rest would be two-bedrooms.

The Daly Avenue address could complicate the project with neighbors. The street is a dead-end road that stretches from the Main Street intersection to an unpaved road at the mouth of Empire Canyon. Daly Avenue has long posed difficulties for traffic, and heavy snowstorms further narrow the road.

People who live on Daly Avenue will likely oppose the development based on the traffic they would expect it to attract.

Brooks Robinson, who runs the day-to-day operations of the Planning Department, predicts opposition from the neighbors, similar to other development ideas in Old Town.

"I expect any number of folks on Daly Avenue to come up and say the road’s too narrow and we can’t handle any more buildings," Robinson says.

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Planning Commissioners on Wednesday will consider whether the development meets City Hall’s General Plan, an overarching document that guides growth. A hearing is scheduled. Staffers argue the project does comply with the document. If the Planning Commissioners agree, the developer would return later for more detailed talks before the panel decides whether the project should be allowed. There will be additional hearings at that stage.

Talisker must also convince officials the zoning on the land should be changed from its current open-space designation to allow development.

David Smith, the Talisker attorney who handles development issues, says he is unsure what sort of reaction the Daly Avenue project will cause. He says there is already work force housing on the street, and he says neighbors worry about project "anytime, anywhere."

"I honestly don’t know what to expect," Smith says.

The Planning Commission on Wednesday also will discuss a Talisker concept to build work force housing at 100 Marsac Ave., another narrow Old Town street, with the developer wanting to put up six houses and four duplexes at the site. A hearing about 100 Marsac Ave. is not scheduled on Wednesday, however, and the discussion starts at 5:30 p.m. Neighbors along Marsac Avenue, like their counterparts on Daly Avenue, will probably dislike the idea based on worries about traffic.

The discussions between City Hall and Talisker will come in the months after a standoff between the two centered on work force housing, which the local government requires of large developers. City officials previously determined Talikser had not built the worker housing in a timely manner based on how many regularly priced units in Empire Pass were constructed, prompting City Hall to stop issuing permits in the development.

That dispute ended with City Hall slightly loosening the timeline for the work force housing, but Talisker since then has been more aggressive in its efforts, including the Daly Avenue and Marsac Avenue ideas. Talisker also is involved in a major work force housing proposal at Quinn’s Junction.

City leaders have long maintained Park City will be a better community if people of varying incomes live locally, leading to the work force housing requirements of the developers. Other benefits, supporters say, include less commuter traffic and workers living close to their jobs.

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