More car-dependent development along the Mountain View Corridor

Rendering of Affinity56’s pool and lazy river. Image courtesy Alliance Residential Company.

Salt Lake City may be experiencing unprecedented growth in the multifamily development, but most of the region’s residential growth is taking place far from the city center, along the Mountain View Corridor in the southwest corner of the county.   Announcements made this week on two major projects underway along the corridor, Affinity56 and Mountain View Village, affirm the area’s sprawl-focused implementation of growth.

One of the county’s largest multifamily developments is actively underway at the outskirts of West Jordan.  On Tuesday, developers Uinta Land Company announced that Affinity56, a 531-unit residential development on the 8200 South block of 5600 West, will begin pre-leasing.  The project will occupy 34 acres with 19 residential buildings and a clubhouse.  The project will also have several residential amenities that will be new to Utah.

About half of the project’s 19 buildings are framed out.  Each building will be three stories and will have a mix of one, two and three-bedroom apartments ranging in size from 711 to 1,500 square feet.  The project will also have 17.72 acres, 51 percent of the land area, dedicated to open space.

“This community offers a resort style standard of living every day,” said Gardner Crane of Uinta Land Company, in a statement.

Affinity56’s open space will feature Utah’s first lazy river, an outdoor fitness trail with exercise stations, a bicycle pump track, resort inspired pool and spa, built-in outdoor grills, dog park and dog wash. The community also include numerous family-friendly features including several playgrounds, sand volleyball courts, and a resident community garden. 

Additional community amenities will include a yoga, Zumba, spin studio with 24/7 Fitness-on-Demand videos and a massive clubhouse with ping pong and pool table and large flat screen TVs.  Resident parking will be a mix of garages and covered surfacing stalls.

The Affinity56 apartments is one of several large multifamily developments in the southwestern corner of Salt Lake County along the Mountain View Corridor.  Across the street from Affinity56 is the Boulder Canyon development, a similarly-sized multifamily community on 5600 West.

There are elements of walkability in the area, both the Affinity and Boulder Canyon Apartments are within walking distance to an elementary school, middle school, K-8 Charter School, several small parks and a Smiths Food and Drug grocery store.  But apart from some adjacent amenities, the projects’ several thousands current and future residents will be dependent on their cars to get around.  The growing residential cluster is still relatively far from any job centers and has almost no transit access.  Just one bus line passes through the area, Route 248, but it only runs on weekdays and at a mix of 30 minute and one-hour intervals.  Even though there is a light rail station less than two miles from the development, the limited bus services ensures that most residents will need to drive to use TRAX to get downtown.

A few miles to the south in Riverton is the site of CenterCal Properties’ Mountain View Village.  On Tuesday the developers announced  a string of tenants for the project’s first phase slated to open Summer 2018.   The 85-acre mixed-used development at 13400 South and 4500 West will include restaurants, an office complex, a gym and a hotel with a full luxury theater.  Updated renderings show a scaled-down density than previous renderings, but in both designs the buildings are surrounding by acres of surface parking.

The tenants announced this week include many traditional strip-mall style brands like Michaels, Ulta, PetSmart, T.J. Maxx/HomeGoods, Sprint, AT&T, Verizon and a Harmons Grocery Store.

As with the Affinity56 project, Mountain View Village has very limited access to transit.  The corridor is only served by two flex routes, F534 and F547.  The F547 runs a circular route every hour from the Daybreak TRAX station and the F534 runs a commuter schedule with two morning and evening trips to the South Jordan FrontRunner Station.

The first phases of both the Affinity56 and Mountain View Village will be completed by summer 2018.

The first phase of Affinity56. Photo by Isaac Riddle.
Rendering of Affinity56. Image courtesy Alliance Residential Company

Posted by Isaac Riddle

Isaac Riddle grew up just outside of Salt Lake City, Utah. He has a BA in English literature from the University of Utah and a Masters of Journalism from Temple University. Isaac has written for Next City, The Philadelphia Public School Notebook and Salt Lake City Weekly. Before embarking on a career in journalism, Isaac taught High School English in the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia. Isaac is the founder of Building Salt Lake and can be reached at isaac@buildingsaltlake.com.