Workforce housing project touted for its central location, amenities |

Workforce housing project touted for its central location, amenities

Park City Planning Commission’s concerns include parking and traffic

Pamela Manson, The Park Record
The Marsac Building. | Park Record file photo

Developers who want to build workforce housing on Homestake Road in the Bonanza Park district envision a community with access to all sorts of amenities and services in Park City.

“This project is walkable to everything – the schools, the resorts, grocery stores, the restaurants, the bars, the entertainment area, hopefully the new future arts and culture district,” said Rory Murphy, who represents J. Fisher Company, the firm proposing the development. “This project is perfectly centered in the middle of the city. That would include Old Town and Prospector and Park Ave. and pretty much everything else. You can go in any direction and access public transportation.”

Murphy made his remarks Wednesday in a presentation to the Park City Planning Commission about the proposed public-private project. 

Commission members are scheduled to visit the site and discuss the project further on Aug. 24. Public hearings and more discussions are scheduled on Sept. 28 and Oct. 26. A vote on the project could be held at the October meeting.

J. Fisher Company, a Centerville real estate services firm, proposes building 123 rental units on a City Hall-owned 1.86-acre lot at 1875 Homestake Road. Nearly 33% of the triangular-shaped parcel would be open space,

Landscaping in the open space would include maple, Colorado spruce, and spring snow crabapple trees with shrubs and a play area, according to a Park City Planning Department report. A hardscaped plaza area with raised planters also is proposed.

Under the firm’s plan, 80% of the housing would be set aside for the workforce and 20% would be market-rate units. The breakdown would be 46 one-bedroom units, 37 of them for the workforce; 74 two-bedroom units, 60 of them for the workforce; and three three-bedroom units, two of them for the workforce. 

A four-story, 45-foot-high building would house the units, which would total 103,060 square feet. The development site is an old railroad yard.

Murphy clarified on Wednesday that a concept drawing of a building that was included a few months ago in project materials came from an engineering firm and was not J. Fisher Company’s image. That drawing, which has been criticized as ugly, does not represent what the developers plan to build, he said.

“Please understand, this will be an attractive project,” Murphy said.

He also said the development will remain an affordable housing project “for the duration.” In addition, the developers will not allow short-term rentals or nightly rentals, Murphy said.

“What they want to do as well is maintain that neighborhood vibe,” he said. “Right now, it is one of the last working-class neighborhoods in town and we need to keep it that way.”

The project includes about 6,400 square feet of amenity space and proposed uses include child playrooms, storage, bike storage, bike maintenance, and music rooms. 

Homestake Road surrounds the property to the west; the future westward Munchkin Road expansion to the north, where Recycle Utah is now located; the Rocky Mountain Power Substation to the east; and the Ironhorse commercial area to the south. The developers are proposing to put up a wall, possibly with a mural, to screen the substation from the housing units. 

The major issue with the project is parking, Murphy said. He also said traffic is a concern. 

The development would have 131 parking stalls, with 125 underground and six of them surface spots. Surrounding businesses, which include the Blind Dog Restaurant & Raw Bar and the Boneyard Saloon & Wine Dive, are concerned residents will have extra cars that they’ll park in their lots, Murphy said.

Homestake condominiums and Claimjumper condominiums also are adjacent to the project site, which is currently used for storage and parking.

The commissioners said they wanted to hear more about how parking would be regulated and how the housing development would impact traffic. They liked the suggested amenities and several proposed having commercial uses in the project.

“The proposed uses are really good,” Planning Commissioner John Kenworthy said. “I think the uses hopefully will enhance the quality of life for the people.”

Planning Commissioner Cristin Van Dine, noting one proposed amenity is a children’s play area, suggested going one step further and having a daycare at the project.

“This is going to be hopefully a spot where there are younger families living there,” she said. “I think that will be an amazing addition if at all possible but I also understand the constraints financially.”

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