Saturday, February 05, 2011

Standard-Examiner: Feasibly, Ogden's Field House Feasibility Study Is Right, Maybe

Implied rest of the headline: Or maybe not

By Curmudgeon

Charlie Trentelman's Sunday "Wasatch Rambler" column deals with the Godfrey Wonder Dome Feasibility study, and Dan Schroeder's critique of it:
Often, people are described as being "cautiously optimistic" about something. I think Charlie can be fairly described as "cautiously skeptical." Headline for the column: "Feasibly, Ogden's field house feasibility study is right, maybe."

Implied rest of the headline: "Or maybe not."

The column is well worth a read.


ND said...

Good read indeed. Nice to see that Dan's analysis is out even more now and the study at least is getting some questioning....meanwhile the city steamroller is still moving with responses due this week for architects....that should be interesting to see how many are going to submit to work for free....

Dorrene Jeske said...

I guess like Charlie the feasbility study is OK as far as it goes, but you will note at the end that the company who did it exempted themselves from liability saying that their estimates are based on the information they received. There are many aspects of the fieldhouse that are not even touched on i.e., a heating/cooling system for it. Something that big is going to require a large heating/cooling plant -- where is that going to be built downtown? How are they going to be able to hold more than one event at a time with the limited parking that's available downtown? There are others that needed to be addressed. Have these issues been overlooked or ignored by Godfrey?

BTW, David Smith wrote a great letter to the editor that was in today's SE, "12 Years of Godfrey is enough." He's right on in his assessment! Good write, David!

Dan S. said...

Good to hear from you, Dorrene!

You're right that the feasibility study focused narrowly on operations, expenses, and revenues, and made no attempt to address construction costs, land acquisition, or parking. But those things are discussed (briefly) in the city's RAMP application which can give you an idea of how much (or how little) the administration has thought about them.

ND said...

Hmmm...that great if there are some real businesses coming to town...but is the space for them from the original plan for the hotel or is this new space we need to fund....why are we building new retail space down there when there are empty spaces available...of course we can't say who the new businesses are can we....50 parking spaces....thats a many hoteliers are going to just use the surface parking near existing retail...I envision a log jam....

Inn may bring businesses
The Junction project developer negotiates for retail tenants
Standard-Examiner staff  
OGDEN — A proposed $13 million Hilton Garden Inn Hotel project slated for The Junction development downtown may include up to four additional businesses, says the inn’s owner.
Layton developer Kevin Garn said he is currently negotiating with several restaurants and retail establishments to occupy 15,000 square feet of building space north of the hotel at 2275 Washington Blvd. He did not identify potential tenants.
The Ogden Redevelopment Agency Board, made up of the city council, would have to grant approval for businesses to operate on the property, said Terrence Bride, the city’s assistant director of business development.
Garn hopes construction on buildings for the businesses can coincide with work on the 125-room hotel, expected to start in June or July.
Construction of the hotel could be completed in a year, Bride said.
The addition of retail shops and restaurants on the hotel property would be beneficial, said Richard Mc-Conkie, the city’s community and economic development director.
“Any restaurants or retail businesses would complement the hotel as well as the rest of The Junction,” he said.
A surface parking lot with spaces for about 50 vehicles will be built on property owned by the RDA just north of the hotel and near the area where the retail shops and restaurants may be located. The hotel will offer valet parking.
The hotel project will be funded using several different financing mechanisms, including:
• $7.8 million in facilities bonds that would be repaid by Garn.
• $1.5 million in tax increment bonds that would be issued by the RDA. Tax increment financing is a tool that captures projected property tax revenue created by a development and then allows those funds to be invested for improvements associated with the project.
• $2.2 million in federal New Markets Tax Credits that will be sought by Garn. The tax credit program permits taxpayers to receive a credit against federal income taxes for making qualified equity investments.
Garn is responsible for paying the remaining $1.5 million for the project, which includes the purchase of property for the hotel from the RDA for $750,000.
In addition, Garn has pledged an additional $2.2 million for the project if he is unable to obtain New Markets Tax Credits.

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