Park City says Old Town housing projects will ‘seed’ neighborhood
Jason Glidden appeared to be one of the busiest municipal staffers on Tuesday evening at a City Hall-hosted open house meant to describe numerous Park City projects and programs.
Glidden, who is the housing development manager for City Hall, manned a table dedicated to the municipal government’s workforce or otherwise affordable housing projects. People streamed toward Glidden’s post at the open house, held at the Park City Library, to learn about City Hall’s aggressive housing program.
Glidden attended the open house to promote two phases of the Woodside Park development plans, centered on the 1300 blocks of Park Avenue and Woodside Avenue. Park City leaders see the projects as critical to the municipal housing goals.
The first phase involves four houses and four townhouses. Construction is planned this year. The second phase, more ambitious, is expected to include 48 units mixed between condominiums and townhouses. The 48 units are anticipated to be built in 2019.
Glidden spent much of the open house fielding questions from people as they perused the information and visuals on display. Glidden in some cases spent extensive time addressing questions from individuals and at other points spoke to groups of people.
Glidden said in an interview some of the people wanted information about the development plans since they live in the neighborhood. Others sought details about the timeline and the qualifications someone will need to be selected as a buyer. The qualification details have not been set and will eventually be based on income levels and, possibly, other factors such as whether someone is considered an essential employee like a first responder.
“Affordable housing helps to keep the idea of a complete community,” Glidden said, describing that developments like the ones planned by City Hall “seed the neighborhood” with families who otherwise would not be able to afford the location.
Park City leaders have long pursued housing programs, but officials have been especially aggressive in recent years with projects like those in Woodside Park. The housing program is seen as a method to increase socioeconomic diversity and reduce commuter traffic. The rank-and-file work force would otherwise struggle in Park City’s resort-driven real estate market, the most expensive in the state, leaders say.
The open house is an annual event meant to provide information about City Hall’s broad work plan in a single event. Approximately 80 people attended on Tuesday. It appeared all of the city’s neighborhoods were represented in the crowd. Some people were interested in roadwork plans while others chatted with City Hall staffers about bus routes or the municipal environmental programs. There was also a station with information about City Hall’s planned acquisition of the Treasure acreage in a $64 million conservation deal. There was information about a planned arts and culture district in Bonanza Park.
One of the stations centered on the future of Deer Valley Drive, a state highway that is a primary corridor in Park City. Officials wanted to learn whether the attendees want bicycle lanes on the road and, in a related question, sought opinions about the nearby Poison Creek pathway as a bicycling and pedestrian route.
Mayor Andy Beerman and at least three members of the Park City Council were in attendance. Two of the City Councilors, Tim Henney and Lynn Ware Peek, were stationed at a booth dedicated to the business of the elected officials.
The municipal government schedules the open house each year as the spring construction season approaches. Not all of the projects or programs involve outdoors work, but the event is set at the beginning of the construction season nonetheless.
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Sales-tax collections in Park City in July beat City Hall projections by a wide margin, providing a key data point that illustrates a nascent economic comeback of sorts from the spring business shutdowns.