Kum & Go drops plans for a gas station next to Sugar House Park

The chain is now seeking to sublet the prime property for other uses where an abandoned Sizzler restaurant now stands.

(Galloway & Company) A rendering of a Kum & Go convenience store and fueling station once proposed at the busy Sugar House corner of 2100 South and 1300 East in Salt Lake City, as seen from 1300 East. Those plans have now been abandoned.

Plans for a Kum & Go gas station on the edge of Sugar House Park appear to be dead.

A broker representing the company said Wednesday it is no longer pursuing those plans and the land at the northwest corner of the popular park that had been eyed for a Kum & Go convenience store is now being marketed for other potential uses.

The site at 2111 S. 1300 East in Salt Lake City, where a vacant Sizzler restaurant now sits, is being offered for sublet by the Iowa-based Kum & Go chain, which is still on the hook for a 20-year lease it signed with the property’s Utah-based owners.

The move comes three weeks after a Salt Lake City appeals officer rejected a legal challenge by Kum & Go to a city decision in April that prevented it from building a two-story station next to the park over traffic and environmental concerns.

“They’re not going to try to go the legal route and appeal that” in 3rd District Court, said Kip Paul, vice chair of investment sales for the brokerage firm Cushman & Wakefield, who is representing Kum & Go in marketing the 0.82-acre property.

Attempts to reach Kum & Go officials Wednesday for comment were not successful.

(Salt Lake City Planning Division) A location map for a new Kum & Go convenience store and fueling station, which had been proposed at the busy Sugar House corner of 2100 South and 1300 East in Salt Lake City.

Maverik, the Salt Lake City-based convenience store chain, announced in April it would acquire Kum & Go’s network of 400 stores in 13 states, creating an 800-store chain combined over 20 states.

Paul said it was unclear if the decision to give up pursuit of a new station by Sugar House Park was made by officials at Maverik or Kum & Go.

City Planning Director Nick Norris said Wednesday via email he had not received any official word regarding the site. Noting that Kum & Go still had 10 days to appeal in court the city’s rejection of its plans, he declined further comment.

The spot just off Interstate 80 is among the more commercially desirable locations in and around Sugar House’s rapidly growing central business district.

The location had earlier been considered for a multistory apartment complex, but that idea was withdrawn. Paul said the current 20-year term on the sublease being offered probably ruled out construction of apartments, which would typically require a longer lease term to be financially viable.

A high-end restaurant also is unlikely, he said, because the site’s proximity to the park makes it impossible for an eatery there to obtain a state liquor license.

(Photo courtesy of Kum & Go) A Kum & Go convenience store in Colorado. The national chain has announced plans to expand into Utah, but its proposed outlet near Sugar House Park appears to be off the table.

Salt Lake City is currently considering a proposal that would bar new drive-thru locations in commercial portions of Sugar House in hopes of retaining a more walkable feel for the east-side neighborhood, potentially affecting the site.

The city is also analyzing the notion of placing additional zoning limits on new gas stations in proximity to bodies of water as well as parks and open spaces above a specified size.

Several plans and designs by Kum & Go for the new gas station and convenience store — part of an expansion into Utah announced by the Des Moines-based chain in 2021 — had been under review at City Hall for more than a year and drew widespread public opposition from Sugar House residents. Hundreds submitted written and oral comments against the proposal.

The city’s planning commission voted 9-1 to reject the company’s application for a conditional use permit, citing concerns over increased traffic and potential environmental impacts on the park, air quality and secondary water supplies in nearby Parleys Creek.

Attorneys for Kum & Go appealed to the city’s land use appeals officer, arguing that the commission’s April 12 vote was illegal, arbitrary and capricious and needed to be overturned.

City Appeals Officer Mary Woodhead ruled July 5 that the commission’s rejection of the permit had been supported by evidence that traffic to and from the gas station would be detrimental to surrounding residential areas and could not be mitigated.

The Sugar House Community Council’s vice chair, Judi Short, hailed the news that a gas station on the park’s northwest corner was not longer being considered.

“We are pleased this is the result,” Short said. “We have nothing against Kum & Go, but this isn’t the right place for another gas station.”