Salt Lake City leaders to vote to approve funds for unknown RDA purchase
Published: April 7, 2014 07:22PM
Updated: April 8, 2014 02:42PM

The Salt Lake City Redevelopment Agency is ready to show ’em the money — $537,072.22, to be exact.

What the money will buy, however, remains to be seen.

On the RDA’s agenda for Tuesday is an action item for the allocation of funds that could purchase property on Block 70. That’s where the Utah Performing Arts Center will go up between 100 South and 200 South from Main Street east to Regent Street.

The Salt Lake City Council sits as the board of directors for the RDA.

But which parcel or parcels would be purchased has not been identified. Or as RDA spokesman Clayton Scrivner said, “It’s yet to be determined.”

The move comes as demolition is moving forward to make way for the 2,500-seat theater designed to attract Broadway shows. The RDA project includes a plaza on Regent Street that also will get a makeover to include restaurants and shops.

Among other things, the project includes a walkway from Main to Regent Street south ofthe Ezra Thompson Building, former home of The Salt Lake Tribune,which now houses Neumont University.

The $116 million project is slated to open July 2016. But the schedule and budget are tight. The $537,072 will give the agency the opportunity to buy small parcels should they become available, said City Councilman Stan Penfold, the RDA’s chairman.

“If we were looking at a specific property, we would negotiate a deal and fund the project after the fact,” he said. “But there have been situations where we have said, ‘If some property becomes available, here is some money to purchase it.’ ”

Sources close to the project say there may be some sticking points regarding properties the RDA needs to maximize the walkway and plaza.

Penfold noted that, to keep the project within its budget, the unidentified parcels could not be purchased with the $116 million project allocation.

The RDA board will vote on whether to fund the $537,072 Tuesday at 2 p.m. at its monthly meeting in City Hall, 451 S. State, Room 326.

csmart@sltrib.com