Candidate touts business sense |

Candidate touts business sense

by Jay Hamburger OF THE RECORD STAFF

Michael Kaplan, best known as the former owner of a Main Street nightclub, is challenging for a spot on the Park City Council, six years after he unsuccessfully bid for the panel.

Kaplan says a spot on the City Council would continue his involvement in civic issues, noting he’s worked with Main Street merchants, the city’s restaurant group and an organization that supports the Park City Ice Arena, among others.

"I get a great deal of enjoyment and gratification from participating," Kaplan says. "I think it’s a logical progression, if you’re involved with all these different groups."

Kaplan, who is 47 years old and lives in Old Town, is a business professor and a real-estate agent. He has lived in Park City for almost 10 years. He touts his credentials in academia and his experience running Mother Urban’s, a shuttered Main Street nightclub.

He deems it important that the City Council have someone with a Main Street background.

"It’s the economic core of our community," Kaplan says, describing what he sees as the increasing competition from Kimball Junction and Salt Lake City.

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Kaplan supports efforts to keep real-estate showrooms and timeshare salesmen from occupying street-level space on Main Street. He says they are not interesting to enough people.

"They’re not a draw to Main Street, and they’re not adding to the tax revenue, either," Kaplan says.

Meanwhile, he plans to discuss traffic during the campaign. He says he wants City Hall to expand bus service to Main Street, where the Old Town transit center anchors the system.

Elsewhere in Park City, Kaplan says he wants stoplights better coordinated, and he says state transportation officials should install signs along S.R. 224 instructing slower drivers to stay in the right-hand lane, making the left-hand lane one for passing vehicles.

He talks about City Hall asking for improvements at Kimball Junction and Quinn’s Junction, but he does not provide details. Kaplan wants roundabouts considered at chokepoints, and he says bicycle lanes should be marked better.