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Soil district expands

The Park City Council has expanded the local government’s so-called ‘soils ordinance’ to Park City High School and McPolin Elementary School.

A recent environmental assessment found elevated lead levels at the location, according to a report submitted to the City Council before the elected officials voted on Thursday.

"As a result, the purpose of revising the ordinance is to reinforce the City’s and Park City School (District’s) commitment of protecting human health and the environment . . . ," Jeff Schoenbacher, City Hall’s environmental specialist, said in a report to the City Council.

The soils ordinance requires that property owners cover contaminated land with six inches of topsoil in a process known as ‘capping.’ The soil is required if the lead content is found to exceed 1,000 parts per million.

The city created the ordinance in 1988 in response to an Environmental Protection Agency probe into whether Park City’s mining heritage endangered the health of Parkites.

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Prospector was especially targeted and early in 2006 the EPA announced that it was finishing its work in the neighborhood. The EPA said the soils ordinance was successful and an official with the agency called it "one of the most highly regarded institutional-control programs in the country."

Schoenbacher’s report indicates that the lead levels found at the school property is "consistent with concentrations found in mine tailings."

The ordinance primarily regulates properties in Prospector.

Silver Star housing

The Park City Council, acting as the city’s Housing Authority, on Thursday agreed to a developer’s affordable-housing plan, consisting of 11 condominiums and 10 rental units.

The Silver Star developers are currently building their condominium project on the edge of Thaynes Canyon, slopeside at Park City Mountain Resort.

The affordable-housing units will be located nearby historic mining-era buildings on the site, in what is described as the "center of the project," according to a report submitted to the elected officials before their vote.

Eleven one-bedroom condominiums, each about 600 square feet, are planned, the report said.

Meanwhile, the developer plans that four of the rental units will be one-bedrooms of about 400 square feet each and six of the units will be two-bedrooms of about 775 square feet each.

The rental units will be made available to Sundance Film Festival employees from early October until late February each year and from early May until late September, artists will occupy the rentals, the report said.

The units at Silver Star will remain restricted to affordable housing for at least 40 years.

The developer plans to start construction on the affordable housing in the summer, the report said.

Rory Murphy, who leads Silver Star, estimates that the condominiums will be priced at between $140,000 and $150,000. Interested buyers must qualify through their income.

Silver Star encompasses about 100 condominiums. The Sundance Institute plans to relocate its Utah headquarters to two renovated mining buildings at Silver Star.

Compiled by Jay Hamburger

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