BY TOM BUSSELBERG
FARMINGTON — Davis County signed an interlocal agreement with North Salt Lake City on Tuesday that trades future property tax revenues for long-term community development efforts on that city’s west side.
The county joins Davis School District among key taxpayer collecting entities in the project, which includes nearly 600 acres along Redwood Road and Center Street.
Plans call for improving the infrastructure, said Ken Leetham, North Salt Lake Assistant City Manager.
“Almost half of that area is vacant or distressed,” he said. “We think it will generate about $7 million over the next 15 years. It will allow for cleanup but also unify the area to attract businesses.”
Financial consultant Jason Burningham spoke before the vote and said that “250 acres is either vacant or greenbelt or completely under-utilized and undeveloped,” he said.
Burningham cited proximity to the airport and a demand for business research, technology, and high-tech-oriented businesses as reasons for moving ahead with the plan.
“The real intent is to enhance that area, have significant business there,” Burningham said.
He noted that several businesses are talking about expanding and have said they are pleased with the redevelopment plans.
The agreement means that taxing entities such as the school district and county will receive 45 percent of the increase in property taxes they would have received over the next 15 years, with the hope that the property will increase in value.
The remaining 55 percent of the increase will be passed to the city’s redevelopment fund to be used on the project.
“There are a lot of opportunities for development and for higher and better use” of the land, said Marlin Eldred, of Davis County Community & Economic Development.
He is interested in either tearing down dilapidated buildings, constructing new ones or improving infrastructure in the area.
“That’s what the hope of the new development area is, he said.
The project could also create a business park or campus setting for several existing business, which have expressed interest in such a development.
“This is a book end into North Salt Lake and Davis County,” Eldred said.