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Coldwell Banker Commercial Principals Acquire, Re-Brand Salt Lake City Office

31 Oct 2013, 2:29 am

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

 The Salt Lake City office of Coldwell Banker Commercial was recently acquired by a group of private investors from NRT L.L.C. The acquiring partnership, which includes agents Brandon Fugal, Tim Simonsen and Stuart Thain, has also recruited Lew Cramer, the founder and chief executive officer of the World Trade Center Utah, as its CEO.The company will bear the name Coldwell Banker Commercial Intermountain and will add a strong international business development initiative as a centerpiece of its strategy.

Cramer was brought in mainly due to his leadership of the World Trade Center Utah, which is credited with helping to boost export growth in the state. During the past decade, Utah was the only state to record year-over-growth. Last year Utah tallied $19 billion worth of exports.

Cramer will be joining an office with a strong track record. Coldwell Banker’s Salt Lake City office has enjoyed an 11-year run as the company’s number one office globally. The office represents such high-profile properties as Cinemark Theaters, RiverPark, Thanksgiving Park, Traverse Mountain and Cabela’s. Fugall is the top-rated agent for Coldwell Banker; last year his leasing volume totaled more than 1 million square feet for 2012.

Wasatch Front Job Growth Outpaces 2012; Retail Vacancy Declines as New Product Slows

19 Oct 2013, 6:58 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

As Salt Lake City’s economy slowly rises, improvement is extending to the retail market, a recent report shows.

The Wasatch Front has added approximately 36,900 new jobs over the past year, an annual growth rate of 3.6 percent. According to Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc., professional and business services sector have led the charge, growing by 10,900 new jobs. By the end of the year, job growth should reach 41,000, reflecting an annualized 3.9 percent increase and outpacing 2012’s performance by about 4,300.

On the retail front, the flow of new product has fallen off dramatically since the openings of City Creek Center and Station Park. Of the 1.3 million square feet completed during the past twelve months, 1.1 million came on line before the end of 2012. Only 300,000 square feet are scheduled for completion by the end of the year, less than 10 percent of 2012’s 3.4 million-square-foot total.

One positive result of this year’s dearth of new retail product is declining vacancy. During the past 12 months, vacancy has dipped 80 basis points to 4.7 percent, well below the national average. Four years ago, average vacancy for all retail property types stood at 7.2 percent.

Chart courtesy of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services @ marcusmillichap.com

Anderson Development Details Plans for Mixed-Use Project at Geneva Steel Site

16 Sep 2013, 3:10 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

After several years of setbacks, Anderson Development’s plans for the former Geneva Steel plant in Vineyard are beginning to gel. Retailers and developers are making new commitments to the 1,750-acre master-planned development, newly branded @Geneva.

Anderson Development’s vision encompasses 11 million square feet at full build-out, including up to 3.5 million square feet of office space, 2 million square feet of retail, and 5 million square feet of industrial facilities, ksl.com reports. The residential component allows up to 7,500 residential units accommodating as many as 26,000 residents. A new intermodal hub will offer regional access.

Recently announced components include Larry H. Miller Group’s plans for a multiplex that would comprise an IMAX theater and 13 additional digital screens. Completion is scheduled for late 2014. Day’s Market has signed on to locate a store at @Geneva, and Utah Valley University has added a 125-acre option to the 100 acres it had previously slated for classrooms and athletic fields.

Anderson Development revamped its approach for the Geneva Steel site after a proposal to build the Real Salt Lake stadium fell through. Gerald Anderson of Anderson Development describes the parcel as the nation’s biggest privately held brownfield site, according to the Daily Herald.

Utah State University Expands With New Athletics Facility, Extension to Its Business School

28 Aug 2013, 8:57 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

Launching the latest capital project at Utah State University in Logan, officials broke ground Aug. 26 on a $42 million expansion of the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business. Named for its lead donor, Huntsman Hall will wrap around the south and west sides of the George S. Eccles Business Building. The 117,000-square-foot project will provide 21 classrooms and 21 meeting rooms, as well as excellence centers focused on entrepreneurship, leadership and international business. The start of the business school expansion follows the groundbreaking earlier this summer of Estes Center (at right), a $9.5 million basketball practice and volleyball competition venue. The Standard-Examinerreported that the 32,000-square-foot facility will include a training room, an in-season strength and conditioning area, offices, a locker and film room. It will accommodate 1,400 fans. Completion is scheduled for April 2014.

Image courtesy of usu.edu

County Rejects Bid for Tavaci Rezoning; McKay-Dee Hospital Kicks Off Expansion

16 Aug 2013, 11:01 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

The Salt Lake County Council has dealt another blow to developer Terry Diehl’s controversial plan for the Tavaci property near Big Cottonwood Canyon, voting down his request to change the property’s zoning.

At issue is Diehl’s proposal to scrap his original plan to build single-family homes, and to instead develop a mixed-use project that would include buildings up to 100 feet tall. During three hours of testimony at a recent council hearing, local residents offered near-unanimous opposition to Diehl’s request to rezone the property, according to examiner.com,

County council members then rejected Diehl’s proposal by a vote of 4 to 3. It is unclear whether Diehl will appeal the  decision.

In healthcare development news, McKay-Dee Hospital has broken ground on a $12.6 million expansion. According to the Standard-Examiner, the expansion will add a 200-seat auditorium, a multi-function reception facility and an outdoor patio, six patient rooms, six intermediate-care patient rooms, and space on the fourth floor for technical equipment. Donations from the Lawrence T. and Janet T. Dee Foundation and the Dee Family are providing financial support for the expansion.

Hines/Oaktree Joint Venture Acquires 4 Office Buildings From Boyer

7 Aug 2013, 10:55 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

A joint venture of Hines and an affiliate of Oaktree Capital Management has given Salt Lake City’s office market a spark with a sizable acquisition from the Boyer Co. in The Gateway district. Terms were not disclosed.

Comprising 440,708 square feet of space, the buildings have an aggregate occupancy rate of about 91 percent. The portfolio offers good visibility from neighboring I-15 and easy access from the neighboring Intermodal Transportation Hub.

Noteworthy tenants include Barrick Gold, Bureau of Land Management Utah, Energy Solutions, Kearns Tribune, Salt Lake Tribune, Sungard Financial and Ernst & Young. A variety of nearby dining and entertainment options are available.

Hines and Oaktree Capital’s acquisition includes:

·         One Gateway – Built in 2002, the seven-story building offers 161,704 square feet. Located at 90 South 400 West

·         Three Gateway – Built in 2001, the six-story building offers 114,197 square feet. Located at 440 West 200 South

·         Five Gateway – Built in 2007, the four-story building offers 64,279 square feet. Located at 178 S. Rio Grande

·         Six Gateway – Built in 2012, the five-story building offers 100,528 square feet. Located at 460 West 50 North

The portfolio is the second Utah acquisition made by the Hines/Oaktree joint venture following last year’s purchase of the 248,352-square-foot South Towne Corporate Center in Sandy. Hines will handle property management on behalf of the joint venture.

Image courtesy of boyercompany.com

Second Hyatt Opens at Cottonwood Corporate Center; Cornerstone Puts Hotel Monaco on the Block

18 Jul 2013, 8:08 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

A second Hyatt flag is flying at Cottonwood Corporate Center
in Salt Lake City with the debut of Hyatt Place Salt Lake City/Cottonwood, a 124-key hotel developed by Sequoia Development.

The new property joins Hyatt Place Salt Lake City / Sandy at the corporate center and is the fifth Hyatt-branded hotel in Utah. The hotel offers an amenity package that includes 42-inch HDTV sets in each room, the Hyatt Grand Bed, hotel-wide Wi-Fi access, complimentary a.m. Kitchen Skillet service, 3,200 square feet of high-tech meeting space, while 24/7 Gallery Menu and Intimate Coffee to Cocktails Bar provide dining options to all guests.

The Salt Lake City market’s growing technology and banking sectors, and the location’s proximity to ski resorts and other outdoor attractions, gave Sequoia and Hyatt the confidence to move forward on the project.

In hospitality investment news, Real Estate Alert recently reported that the Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City has been brought to market by Cornerstone Real Estate Advisers L.L.C.

Located at 15 West 200 South, the 225-key boutique hotel is one of three Monaco properties that Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. is marketing on behalf of Hartford, Conn.-based Cornerstone. Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants operates the Salt Lake City property as well as Monaco hotels in Chicago and Denver. Cornerstone acquired the three hotels for $185.9 million in 2008, Real Estate Alert reported.

Image courtesy of hyatt.com

Investing in Utah’s Historic Sites Pays Big Dividends, Study Contends

3 Jul 2013, 3:02 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

Utah’s job market has shown major improvement during the few years, but the contribution of one real estate-related niche to this recovery may still be under-appreciated. A study of the state’s use of resources for the preservation of historic buildings and sites appears to reveal the value of this “backward”-thinking strategy.

Deseret News recently reported on the study, which was  conducted for the Utah Heritage Foundation by PlaceEconomics. The consulting firm concluded that about 7,300 jobs are created directly or indirectly by the heritage sector of the state’s tourism industry each year. Nearly 5,000 jobs were created between 1990 and 2012 by federal and state historic tax credits.

The effect of the heritage sites on tourism is also evident. Each year, rehabilitated buildings and sites draw 7.2 million   visitors, who spend about $400 million.

PlaceEconomics estimates that every $1 million invested in the rehab of historic buildings creates 17.7 new jobs. That $1 million investment generates around $100,000 in economic activity, as well as $34,217 in state sales tax, indirect business tax and indirect salary and wages.

Kennedy Wilson Buys East Valley M-F Complex for $61.8 Million

5 Jun 2013, 8:47 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

In a $61.8 million deal, Kennedy Wilson has acquired the Foothill Place Apartments, a 450-unit complex in East Valley. The Beverly Hills, Calif.-based investment firm is investing $15 million of private equity in the transaction and secured a $49.7 million Freddie Mac loan through Berkeley Point Capital L.L.C.

Foothill Place comprises ten two-story and three-story buildings on an 18-acre site near the University of Utah and Park City. Resident amenities at the class B+, garden-style community include two pools, a volleyball court, dog park, rock-climbing boulder and fitness center. Kennedy Wilson’s plans include an extensive renovation, new washers and dryers, and common-area upgrades.

Berkeley Point provided the ten-year, fixed-rate loan under Freddie Mac’s Capital Markets Execution program. Terms include a 3.58 percent interest rate and two years of interest-only payments.

Foothill Place Apartments is Kennedy Wilson’s second recent purchase in the Salt Lake City market, following its acquisition of Sandpiper Apartments last November. Bob Hart, president of the firm’s multi-family management group, described the acquisitions as “excellent examples of Kennedy Wilson’s value-add repositioning strategy in markets that have stable job growth with high rental demand.”

Plans for Convention Center-Area Hotels, Airport Renovation Advance

24 May 2013, 4:28 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

After a lengthy gestation period, two hospitality projects tied to Salt Lake City’s planned convention center are ready to get off the ground . A joint venture of Alex Brown Realty Inc., PEG Development and Blue Diamond Capital are proposing a complex that would include two hotels, a parking structure and a mixed-use retail component.

Set to be developed on a three-acre site at the southwest corner of West 100 South and South 300 West, the project would be  located near Energy Solutions Arena, Salt Lake Palace Convention Center and Temple Square. City Creek and Gateway offer 1.5 million square feet of nearby retail space between them.

Also advancing is a $2 billion renovation plan for Salt Lake City International Airport. The project would focus on securing faster takeoffs, the introduction of new equipment and taking advantage of the nearby mountain views. The Deseret News reports that airline fees, ticket surcharges and federal grants would provide funding for the project, which is scheduled to get under way next year and conclude in 2024. Around 11 percent of the project’s budget will come from federal grants.   

Microsoft, Nordstrom Raise Local Profiles With New Stores

18 Apr 2013, 4:41 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

Two big names in retail—one fashion, one high-tech—are targeting Greater Salt Lake City for growth. On April 11, Microsoft opened a 3,500-square-foot space at City Creek Center. Nordstrom Inc. has announced plans to open a 29,000-square-foot Nordstrom Rack this fall at Station Park in Farmington.

The Nordstrom Rack will be the third in metro Salt Lake City for the brand, which offers merchandise at 50 to 60 percent discounts. Nordstrom also operates two regular full-line stores in the Salt Lake City region.

Microsoft’s 3,500-square-foot store at City Creek Center, the 700,000-square-foot regional mall that opened in March 2012, is its the software giant’s 33rd. It is also part of a strategy of challenging the experience in the retail stores operated by rival Apple Inc.

Microsoft’s store is showcasing its products’ new direction by means of high-tech accents like a digital wall that projects Xbox games and other activities. All devices feature touchscreens and operate with Microsoft products. The store also offers a community theater for public screenings, an amenity that Microsoft hopes will help boost its profile in the community.

Summer Kickoff Eyed for Geneva Steel Site Redevelopment

28 Mar 2013, 4:05 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

 After years of planning, one of the state’s biggest master-planned developments may be only months away from construction on the former site of Geneva Steel in Vineyard.

Anderson Geneva Development recently revealed plans to develop up to 2 million square feet of office space, 7,500 residential units and a rail hub on a 100-acre parcel. In all, the community could accommodate up to 20,000 residents. The Vineyard Redevelopment Agency approved plans for the project in 2011 and construction could start this summer.

According to Deseret News, the mixed-use development’s intermodal hub would offer commuter and freight rail access. Utah Valley University is considering adding 120 acres to the 100 acres it already owns at the site for athletic fields.

Megahotel Plans Pick Up Steam From State Funding Sources

13 Mar 2013, 11:04 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

In recent years, Salt Lake City’s entrepreneurs and elected officials have recognized the value of developing a convention center and large new hospitality property. Often referred to as the “megahotel project”, the initiative has been picking up steam of late. Legislators have proposed new funding mechanisms to provide approximately $100 million worth of public financing toward the estimated $335 million cost, the Salt Lake Tribune noted.

The state Senate recently passed a measure to provide up to $32.8 million toward the project in annual $3.5 million increments. The funds would be used for land acquisition as well as the development of 85,000 square feet of meeting space.

The proposed 1000-key convention center hotel would produce as much as $600 million in state and local taxes over the next 30 years, theTribunereported.

Salt Lake City and Salt Lake County would supply the rest of the $100 million in public financing. Local authorities could redirect sales tax revenue to generate $67 million.

The city’s requirements stipulate that the project must be developed no more than 1,000 yards from the Salt Palace convention center in order to promote the city’s meetings and conventions business.

Image of the Salt Palace courtesy of user Mangoman88 via Wikimedia Commons



Marriott’s Courtyard Salt Lake City Airport Wraps Makeover Aimed at Business Travelers

28 Feb 2013, 3:16 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

As rising demand for hotel rooms in Greater Salt Lake City spurs talk of new development, properties are taking steps now to shore up market share and boost occupancy. A case in point: Marriott’s Courtyard Salt Lake City Airport, which recently underwent an extensive renovation.

Located at 4843 Douglas Corrigan Way,the 154-key hotel now incorporates Marriott’s Refreshing Business concept in its lobby and brand-new suite design. In the lobby, RLJ Lodging Trust has introduced media pods, Wi-Fi access, and a revamped layout designed to accommodate social gatherings and pop-up meetings.

Also new is GoBoard 4.0, a lobby feature offering information, maps, weather, and headline news by means of a 55-inch LCD touch screen.

Through a smartphone integration feature, guests can access local information plus flight updates from nearby airports. The facility’s focus on business travelers extends to building-wide Internet access and a business center offering computers and a printer as well as dedicated terminals for flight inquiries and printing boarding passes.

Highlights of guestroom improvements include more functional work spaces, upgraded bathrooms, separate seating areas, high-speed internet connections and new plush bedding.

Photo courtesy of marriott.com 

Embassy Suites Opening Marks Latest Milestone for $500M Fairbourne Station Makeover

14 Feb 2013, 6:07 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

In the latest milestone for West Valley City’s $500 million Fairbourne Station urban renewal program, a 162-key Embassy Suites officially opened its doors on Feb. 12, the Salt Lake Tribune reported.

Located at 3524 S. Market Street, Embassy Suites features a Shula’s 347 Grill, part of football coach Don Shula’s Miami-based dining chain. The West Valley City Redevelopment Agency kickstarted development by securing $33 million in private financing and leasing the property to the project’s developer, West Valley Lodging Initiatives L.L.C., the Tribune reported.

The hotel’s guest amenity package features a fitness center, an indoor pool, laundry facilities and 7,500 square feet of meeting space. Renascent Hospitality is the on-site  manager.

Plans for the 40-acre Fairbourne Station redevelopment site call for residential, retail, hotel and office components.

Rendering courtesy of embassysuites3.hilton.com/

The hotel’s guest amenity package features a fitness center, an indoor pool, laundry facilities and 7,500 square feet of meeting space. Renascent Hospitality is the on-site  manager.

City Creek Adds to Accolades With IPA Award for Top U.S. Retail Project

25 Jan 2013, 10:25 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

As one of the nation’s largest new retail projects to come on line in the country during the past several years, City Creek Center has already earned wide recognition. Now the property has added to its laurels, winning the prize for the year’s best retail development in the United States at the International Property Awards in London this month. Sponsored by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors and Yamaha, the program has been a mainstay of the awards circuit for the past 18 years.

Developed by Taubman and City Creek Reserve, Inc., an entity controlled by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, City Creek beat out thousands of entries to land in the top three worldwide. Candidates from the Americas included projects from Canada, Mexico, South America and the Caribbean as well as the U.S.

The retail component of the development opened last March as the centerpiece of one of the largest mixed-use downtown redevelopment projects in the country. Stores include anchors Macy’s and Nordstrom, a new Apple store and more than 100 in-line retailers. The building incorporates a manmade creek, a re-creation of the original stream that gave its name to the area and the center.  

Image courtesy of shopcitycreekcenter.com

Perry & Associates Plans Spring Start for 70 KSF Lehi Office Project

31 Dec 2012, 7:11 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

Perry & Associates, Inc. is planning a May construction start for Traverse Ridge Center I, a 70,000-square-foot office complex in Lehi, according to the Salt Lake Tribune. Completion is scheduled by March 2014.

Traverse Ridge Center I will take shape east of the State Road 92 exit of Interstate 15, the Tribune reports. Perry & Associates is banking on the property’s location next to the TRAX rail line and its proximity to the new Adobe campus and the Outlets at Traverse Mountain retail center to attract tenants. Eric Smith, James Mecham and Jessmine Kim of CBRE Inc.’s Salt Lake City office are handling leasing.

In hospitality investment news, Brian Head Resort, located near Cedar City in southern Utah, is under new ownership following its sale to Brian Head Acquisition Partner L.LC., the The Standard-Examiner reports.

The resort was placed on the market following the death in 2008 of Jim Trees, its former owner. Brian Head Resort includes two mountains, nine lifts, 640 skiable acres, 53 runs and a snow tubing area.

Terms were not disclosed, but the property’s 2010 price of $34.7 million price was later cut to $29 million. In March 2012, the resort was placed into receivership with Wells Fargo.

Image courtesy of snow-forecast.com

Stalled Pioneer Park Condo Project Gets $4.5M in City Financing

20 Dec 2012, 4:45 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

Broadway Park Lofts, a stalled Pioneer Park condominium project, has received a lifeline from the Salt Lake City Redevelopment Agency. The Salt Lake Tribune reports that the agency is providing $4.5 million in completion financing to BPL South Tower L.L.C., the new developer of the 51-unit project. BPL South Tower is required to repay the loan over the next two years. Company principals Micah Peters and James Chellis had acquired the unfinished project for a reported $3.5 million.

Located at 300 South, Broadway Park Lofts lost its original developer, Ken Milo, after the market turned sour in 2009. Earlier this year, the Redevelopment Agency attempted to loan $4.5 million to Milo, but that effort to restart the project fell through.

Broadway Park Lofts will comprise 17 live/work units, two 580-square-foot units, ten 700-square-foot units, ten 900-square-foot units and 12 units with 1,200 square-foot floor plans. Prices will range from just under $100,000 to about $500,000. Peters and Chelis are counting on the property’s location near Pioneer Park to boost sales. Completion is expected by the end of 2013.

Image courtesy of silverleaf-financial.com

Tech Tenants Eyed for Rebranded 500 KSF Provo Office Park

7 Dec 2012, 6:30 pm

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

Utah-based developer Warren King has acquired a 500,000-square-foot office park in Provo and is rebranding the campus as East Bay Technology Park in a bid to reel in high-tech tenants.

Laurie Adair, Tab Cornelison and Scott Wilmarth of CBRE Inc. will handle leasing, and the firm’s asset services division is tasked with property management. The new owner and leasing team have some work ahead; the complex is about 60 percent vacant. That rate is several times higher than it is for the Greater Salt Lake City office market as a whole. Vacancy for the area is hovering around 18 percent, according to Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc.

But King and the leasing team are betting that the property’s proximity to Interstate 15, and to the new FrontRunner South rail line linking Provo to Salt Lake City, will help expand its roster of technology tenants.

Built from 1986 to 1993, and renovated in 2009-2010, the six buildings are linked by a series of enclosed corridors and sky bridges. The complex had previously served as a campus for Novell, the software company.

Chart courtesy of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services 



Sun Products Inks Record 1 MSF Lease at Freeport West Industrial Park

26 Nov 2012, 4:10 am

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

In Salt Lake City’s largest-ever industrial lease, Sun Products Corp. is taking 1 million square feet at Freeport West Landmark Industrial Park.  The consumer products manufacturer will move from six different buildings into two, enabling it to centralize and streamline operations. respond to customers more efficiently and reduce its carbon footprint.

Wilton, Conn.-based Sun Products, which produces familiar brands like Wisk, All, and Snuggle, will begin using one building at the new logistics and distribution center this month. Delivery of the adjacent second building is scheduled for the third quarter of 2013.

Developed by Big-D Construction, Freeport West Landmark Industrial Park is being marketed by NAI West, which arranged the Sun Products lease. NAI West’s Zach Anderson, Bryce Blanchard, Kyle Roberts and Mike Falk worked on the transaction.

Image courtesy of daviscountyutah.gov


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