Basin Recreation purchasing land for future indoor facility
July 24, 2015
As early as Tuesday, the Snyderville Basin Special Recreation District (SBSRD) is expected to close on a year-long negotiation for a nearly half-million dollar land purchase. District Director Rena Jordan says the 17.3-acre property, located along Pace Frontage Road and north of the Silver Summit Business Park, is ideal for another community indoor recreation facility.
The Recreation District is using impact fees to pay for the approximately $425,000 property, which Jordan referred to as a "strategic opportunity." Jordan said the district paid nearly $1.9 million for the 2.8 acres that the Fieldhouse occupies.
"There aren’t many places in town where you can buy 17 acres of land and hope to do much with it," she said.
The SBSRD initiated contact with the property owner, a San Francisco-based company, more than a year ago about acquiring the property because of its proximity to a future community park.
The already mentioned property is surrounded by 80-acres designated for a park that will be part of the Silver Creek Village Center, a residential development slated to include more than 1,500 residential and affordable housing units. As part of the development agreement, the developer is required to donate the 80-acres to the Recreation District for the park and connected trails.
Jordan said it’s not hard to imagine what the space could be used for, but said the district board hasn’t yet sat down to discuss it, adding that won’t happen until the property is legally deeded to the Recreation District.
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One possible use could be another indoor space similar to the Fieldhouse, but also with a multi-purpose indoor gymnasium. Jordan said it could even be used for an indoor aquatic center or more indoor tennis courts.
"Our intention was one of a strategic acquisition of contiguous land for the whole recreation park that will be out there," Jordan said. "It is a very good space to create indoor facilities, but our strategy and master planning on that is really undefined, except that it will contain some sort of indoor facility. We have made no commitments to what we are going to build there, though."
The site’s future uses could depend on the Recreation District’s collaboration with Park City Municipal, the Park City school district and, possibly, the South Summit school district, Jordan said. The three entities have an interlocal agreement to utilize the other’s services in attempt to reduce the duplication of facilities.
In addition to the community park, the Silver Creek Village Center developer is also donating five acres to the South Summit School District.
"The other side of that equation is there are 1,200 homes going right behind this space so the need for additional recreation is obvious," Jordan said. "This parcel does not fit into the Park City School District, it fits into the South Summit School District. So I’m thinking the collaboration that has been so successful with Park City, we now have an opportunity to expand it to include South Summit."
SBSRD officials know what they’d like the space to be used for, but they don’t have the money to fund it.
"All of our major facilities have been built through bonding," Jordan said. "We have not even had the bonding discussion. We’re trying to keep our heads down and focus on the bond money that we have right now."
Once the purchase is finalized, the Recreation District will have approximately $1.8 million left in impact fees paid by other developers.
"We’ll have the money to kickstart something, but not enough to build a gym or a fieldhouse," Jordan said.
In order to use the property for a recreation facility, it will need to be rezoned from its current rural residential status.
"We’ll have to go through a very public process to go through the rezoning, which will be the lower of the hurdles we’ll have to cross," Jordan said. "But we know what the landscape of available real estate is like here and we are just very grateful we were able to purchase this for the community. There were moments in this transaction that we felt it wasn’t going to happen."
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