Dana Williams faces busy final weeks as mayor of Park City
The countdown to retirement from the mayor’s office started in the spring for Dana Williams, when he made the decision not to seek another term.
But the three-term mayor now faces the final weeks of his administration, and he said in an interview on Monday he wants to make significant progress on at least two high-profile issues before he leaves office in early January: the Treasure development and the redo of City Hall’s General Plan, an overarching document that guides growth.
Williams said the General Plan work is his top priority. City Hall has spent extensive time on the General Plan work, and the mayor points to a visioning process several years ago as the start of the discussions.
"I would love for at least the initial draft to get finished," Williams said.
The General Plan provides an overview of Park City neighborhoods as it discusses ideas for growth. The document is a broad guide for City Hall’s growth strategies and it is the foundation for the municipal government’s more detailed development rules.
There has only been scattered public interest in the long-running talks about the General Plan, but it appears the document could attract more opinions as the Park City Council nears the adoption of the General Plan.
Williams described the General Plan as a "state of the city right now."
"It’s just taken such a long time to finish," the mayor said, acknowledging that he is unsure whether the General Plan will be completed by the end of his term. He said the General Plan could be delayed if there is substantial input from Parkites.
Williams, meanwhile, said his No. 2 priority is reaching an agreement of some sort with the Treasure partnership about the project. He said he wants a deal reached calling for half of the development rights to remain at the Treasure site itself and the other half to be shifted elsewhere.
The Treasure land is located on a hillside overlooking Old Town on the slopes of Park City Mountain Resort. Williams said he would like the deal to identify where the development rights that would not remain at the site would be shifted.
Williams said he also wants a resolution between the Treasure side and City Hall detailing what is known as the back-of-house square footage associated with the project — conference rooms, indoor parking, hallways and other ancillary space not counted as residential space.
He said the sides are "close" to an agreement. Williams hopes a vote on Treasure is cast on or before Dec. 19, the last Park City Council meeting he is scheduled to preside over. The Treasure discussions have stretched through most of Williams’ time in office.
The City Council is scheduled to meet three times, on Dec. 5, Dec. 12 and Dec. 19, before the end of the mayor’s term. A long-term tentative calendar for the meetings lists topics like the movie studio at Quinn’s Junction, water quality and the compensation of elected officials as some of the issues that will be addressed.
"I will do everything I can to keep us focused," Williams said about the priorities.
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Tourism revenue increased month over month this summer, the Park City Chamber/Bureau reported, but lodging numbers are still off 22% for December. Officials reported a recent uptick in bookings, though, pointing to a modicum of certainty after ski resorts announced their COVID-related opening policies.