At the Council and RDA Meeting:
- The Board elected Board Member Ana Valdemoros (pictured right) as RDA Vice-Chair for calendar year 2020. Board Member Amy Fowler (pictured left) will continue to serve as the RDA Chair. The RDA Chair serves a two-year term, while the RDA Vice-Chair serves a one-year term.
- The Board discussed various priorities and options related to project area creation in the City. “Project areas” aid in the redevelopment of neighborhoods. Currently, the RDA has several new project areas under consideration. Priorities the Board uses for evaluating a new project area includes community-building amenities like new or improved transit options, incentivizing affordable housing options, and public benefits such as green space and improved walkability.
- The Board adopted two resolutions related to proposed project areas at the University of Utah’s Research Park and along 1300 East Street near Rice-Eccles Stadium. The University is interested in working with the City to redevelop both areas to potentially include housing, retail, additional commercial spaces, and future transit opportunities. Approval of these resolutions does not commit the City to creating new project areas but allows RDA staff and stakeholders to look into their viability. The Board expects to receive updates in the coming months.
- The Council received a demonstration of the soon-to-be launched new online Business Licensing system, which provides step-by-step guidance to apply, change, or renew a business license and automatically calculates fees. In cases where fire, health or other inspections are required, applicants are automatically placed in the queue for scheduling. Approved applicants can now print their own licenses and will receive City notifications through email. In the coming months, the Council intends to review the full City processes for licensing, inspections, and permitting to identity streamlining opportunities.
- The Council heard a proposal that would increase the maximum height of buildings in certain areas of the Gateway Mixed Use zoning district (G-MU) around the UTA intermodal hub. The Council expects to have a follow-up briefing after RDA staff, Planning staff, and the petitioners meet to further refine the proposal.
- The Council received an update from staff about the Council District Five vacancy. The deadline to apply for the open position, recently left vacant by now-Mayor Erin Mendenhall, was today at 5 p.m. The 28 applicants will present to the Council at its upcoming January 21st meeting before the Council makes a final decision on the new Council Member for District Five.