But there are still at least a couple sites being included in Davis County Economic Development’s new “Sure Site” category, or “shovel ready” for building, as Bountiful City Planner Aric Jensen likes to call it.
The Renaissance Towne Centre site between 1500 South and 1800 South and 200 West and Main is a multi-acre parcel with several portions of the old Five Points Mall site included.
In addition, the Village on Main site on the southwest corner of Pages Lane and Main Street also has several pad sites that can be included, Jensen said.
As explained to the Bountiful City Council last week, “sure sites” are those being identified by all of the county’s 15 cities for professional/office development potential.
That’s being done in conjunction with the county’s months-old Economic Development Department, headed by director Kent Sulser and Marlin Eldred, county economic development coordinator.
A countywide list of “sure sights” is intended as a way for out-of-area, out-of-state developers and business people to quickly identify potential sites.
“Bountiful is a mature city, the majority of land available has been built out,” Eldred told the council. “The city is in the process of looking at redevelopment (RDA) projects, buildings that have outlived their usefulness or life, need to be torn down.
“The city is also looking at a trolley car (streetcar) system,” as outlined in Thursday’s Clipper. At a March 10 open house, Mayor Joe Johnson said the streetcar system could, among other positives, provide economic stimulus to his city’s Main Street.
Jensen spoke very positively of the interaction with county officials on economic development.
“I’m excited about their website, having a list of shovel ready (nearly ready to break ground-type sites), and sure sites (those ideal for development),” he said.
“That means anyone interested from the outside (of area) can come in who is interested in South Davis, whether it’s Woods Cross, North Salt Lake, West Bountiful, etc. The simple fact is the more businesses come in, the more it helps everybody.”
The county’s effort is not geared to drawing more retail, necessarily, but more sustainable jobs, paying above the $8 to $10 an hour typical or retail jobs, Jensen said. “It’s to attract professional office, industry, manufacturing, to attract job-producing businesses that have a relatively high wage scale.”
He told the Clipper that at the Village on Main, there are a few “pad sites that have been pre-approved (for potential construction projects). It’s a matter of them (a developer) coming in (to the city offices) and getting a building permit, design to the planning commission.
“Those are shovel-ready sites,” he said, meaning utility connections, other infrastructure improvements are in place.
Village on Main pad sites could serve for a fast food or sit-down restaurant or neighborhood business-type use.
“The corner (Pages and Main) has two options, either one building on the corner or split up, someone could put two buildings away from the corner on either side, it depends how it best works out,” Jensen said.
The northwest side would be ideal for a restaurant while a “multi-tenant inline space” pad is envisioned for the southeast side, the city planner said.
Meanwhile, all of the housing units at Village on Main are done, with the “unrestricted” any age units 100 percent full, the senior side about two-thirds full.
At Renaissance, a couple of pad sites are available on the project’s north end. “Conceptual plans” have been approved for the multi-acre south end, “but it’s not quite shovel ready” for construction, Jensen said.
“We know where Renaissance Drive will go, down the middle, where the utilities will go. It’s just getting individual (building) approval on either side. There is a restaurant pad for the northwest side, plus a multi-tenant inline space pad on the very southeast side,” Jensen said of current plans he is aware of.
But while sites have been looked at, and queries made to city officials, no “second round” meetings have taken place, Jensen said.
A problem getting financing for anything out of the ordinary is among factors he believes are behind the lack of activity on those sites.