Central Ninth buildout continues with two proposed micro-unit buildings

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The Central Ninth neighborhood has transformed in Salt Lake as new units and businesses have replaced older abandoned buildings and vacant lots. One new proposed project looks to build a single-loaded corridor micro-unit building to replace an old single-family home. Another plans to add more variety of apartments to replace two single-family homes to the north.

Both sit immediately adjacent to the 900 South Trax station.

Located at 855 S. 200 W., the first new project, called the MRK 2.0, would feature 35 micro-units with around 272 square feet of living space per unit. Compare this 272 square feet to a different project, Bamboo Housing,  in the Central City that received approval last month at 400 square feet per unit. These units would be some of the smallest proposed or planned in the Salt Lake City Downtown area.

The units would include full kitchens and bathrooms, and there would be seven on each of the five floors, all north-facing, entering from a corridor on the southern wall. Each floor would have a shared laundry space. 

The plan calls for no parking stalls on site but does include secured bike storage in a small basement area that doubles as the mail room. There are plans for stairs on both ends of the building, and one elevator on the street facing side. 

MRK 2.0 will replace an already torn down single-family home that once sat on the lot. The building will also be built in tandem with a separate, yet to be submitted project that will replace the two other homes to the north of this one. This would leave only one single family home left along 200 W. on this block.

Another project, which include the two properties to the north, is currently waiting its building permit. This structure would remove the two existing homes at 847 and 851 S. to make way for a 69-unit apartment building.

This building calls for more micro-units, larger studios, and one-bedrooms. It is currently awaiting city approval from numerous different departments.

This second project is being built by the same team, and they are planning to develop both properties together.

While the larger apartment building is by-right, and requires adminstrative approval only, the MRK 2.0 project will require a planned devleopment despite being located in a transit area and in the FB-UN2 zone. This is due to recent changes to the FB-UN2 zones. 

The FB-UN2, or Form-based Urban Neighborhood District zone, was designed for the Central Ninth neighborhood to help spur the growth and development of more creative types within restrictive lot sizes.

The updates were made in 2016, and the intention was to require more significant setbacks when the zoned property borders a residential zone property. The MRK 2.0 borders multiple properties, requiring the planned development process for the side and rear yard setbacks. 

Goggle Earth view of the single-family home and the empty lot, center-right.

These projects would add new housing types to an already flourishing area that features large apartment buildings, like the Slate project, and smaller, more boutique units, like the recently completed Block 8. 

The build-out of the Central Ninth neighborhood is far from over, and this may encourage more development of existing homes that front the 900 S TRAX station.

Development Details

Owner: MRK3 Group, LLC

Architect: DOT Architecture

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Posted by Zeke Peters

Zeke Peters is a dual-masters student at the University of Utah studying Urban Planning and Public Administration. He works as a planner and designer in Salt Lake City. He currently resides in downtown Salt Lake and is from Austin, Minnesota, the birthplace of SPAM.