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Arena Rising Downtown Arena Renovation Delivers World-Class Sports and Entertainment Venue



One of the nation’s best. Again. LDS Hospital


CBRE knows Salt Lake City. Through our industry-leading perspectives, scale and local connectivity, we deliver outcomes that drive business and bottom-line performance for every client we serve. How can we help transform your real estate into real advantage? For more information contact or visit: Lloyd Allen, Sales Management Director +1 801 869 8044 cbre.com/slc



54 7 12 16 18 22 26 30 34 22 38 40 44 46 50 46 61


Cover Story: Arena Rising Utah Jazz and downtown benefit from $125 million upgrade

Navigator Your personal guide to navigating downtown

New Face in Town: Regent Street Serving as an entertainment venue with many purposes

12 Holiday Traditions The holidays in downtown SLC are a magical time

Hot and Happening Downtown Salt Lake City’s coffee is hot and happening

Flying Objects Downtown is made more whimsical through arts and culture

Where the Magic Happens Creating wonder at three beloved downtown museums

Utah Opera Celebrates 40 Years From a distinguished past to a bright future

The Eccles Theater Lighting up the downtown landscape

Coding Back to School Building stronger coders with new skills

In Fashion at Library Square An artistic hotbed for city students

What’s Old is New Again Old ideas can sometimes use new buildings

Designing Downtown Architecture firms set up shop downtown

Dynamic Urban Living New residential projects add growing living opportunities

Downtown Dining Guide Annual restaurant and dining guide

175 E 400 South, Ste. 600 | Salt Lake City, UT 84111 | 801-359-5118 | downtownslc.org Lane Beattie, President and CEO | Jason Mathis, Executive Director Justin Banks, Research and Community Development Coordinator | Kristin Beck, Director of Urban Activation | Carson Chambers, Programs Manager Nick Como, Senior Director of Communication and Marketing | Jesse Dean, Director of Urban Development | Alison Einerson, Market Manager Julie Janke, Grant Writer | Nancy Le, Operations Coordinator | Ryan Mack, Community Engagement Coordinator Camille Winnie, Community Services Director | Greg Yerkes, Business Outreach Coordinator Photographers: Michael Ori, Austen Diamond, David Newkirk, Joey Jonatis

4770 S 5600 West | West Valley City, UT 84170 | 801-204-6500 | utahmediagroup.com Brent Low, President & CEO | Megan Donio, Project Manager | Tyler Pratt, Design Manager DOWNTOWN the Magazine is the official publication of the Downtown Alliance. ©2017 by the Salt Lake Downtown Alliance.



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The Times They Are a-Changin’, So Is Downtown


hange is inevitable. It is also exciting, exhausting and scary. Downtown is in the midst of dramatic changes that will set the course of our community’s development for decades. One of the biggest changes for downtown is the reimagined Vivint Smart Home Arena (pg 54), home to our beloved Utah Jazz. The remodel creates the space for a newly imagined sports and entertainment district shaping up around The Gateway, Vivint Smart Home Arena and Salt Palace Convention Center. This neighborhood is poised for a rebound, and we are excited to help lead the cheers for a dynamic and rising neighborhood on downtown’s west side. This issue of DOWNTOWN the Magazine highlights evolving cultural offerings that set our urban center apart from other Utah communities (pg 21). Research confirms that culture and art are important not just for improving our quality of life, but also for growing our economy. Tech firms, start-ups and creative entrepreneurs are choosing to locate downtown in reimagined historic buildings (pg 44) for the architecture, mass transit and culture only our urban center can provide. They also like downtown restaurants and cafes better than suburban chains.


Beth Lopez Beth Lopez is a freelance writer and editor based in Salt Lake. She plays in the realms of editorial work and commercial copywriting, focusing on her very favorite things (the outdoors, shows worth remembering, and furry animals). She frequents the trails of the Wasatch and obsesses a tad too much over Scrabble scores. Keith Maney Keith Manley is a father, former investment banker, entrepreneur and sometimes finds time to write. When he’s not spending time with his kids, you can usually find him chasing powder at one of Utah’s many resorts, climbing peaks in the Wasatch mountains or road tripping to California to catch waves.

Jason Mathis Executive Director, Downtown Alliance

Who knew? The Downtown Dine O’ Round (pg 61) provides plenty o’ justifications to sample new locations, and our Dining Guide highlights dozen of downtown restaurants that will keep you coming back to the urban center all year long. One of the biggest changes for downtown is a reimagined model for homeless services that will create a safer space for people experiencing homelessness. We have spent a lot of time at the Downtown Alliance thinking about how to help solve this complex issue. And we are grateful to public and private leaders for working together to find new solutions to old challenges. Change is coming. At the Downtown Alliance we are committed to thinking about our evolving urban center in ways that help us capitalize on our existing momentum, mitigate challenges and help build a future that ensures our success for years to come. I


Melissa Fields Longtime freelance writer and editor Melissa Fields was born and raised in the tip of America’s mitten, northern Michigan. She moved to Utah 20 years ago and now gratefully spends her winters skiing powder rather than ice fishing and riding snow machines. Melissa’s work has appeared in Salt Lake Magazine, Ski Utah magazine, and Sunset, among other publications and, since 2014, she’s served as editor in chief for Park City Magazine. Ryan Mack A native of Salt Lake City, Ryan has his eyes and ears on the streets of downtown, serving as the community engagement coordinator for the Downtown Alliance. When he’s not skiing or mountain biking in the Wasatch, you’ll find him taking advantage of all of the amazing amenities that downtown has to offer. 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.


Steiner Campus Community Garden

CALL 801.355.7485 TO LEARN MORE



Authentic Mexican food & Cantina Celebrating 20 years



165 S. West Temple • SLC (Below Benihana and across from the Salt Palace)

255 Main St • Park City Treasure Mountain Inn (Top of Main)



Film fuels DREAMS, IGNITES conscience, and sparks COMMUNITY.

TOWER THEATRE 876 East 900 South

BROADWAY CENTRE 111 East 300 South


Most magazines cover a singular topic: parenting, health, skiing, fitness, etc. You get the idea. For the most part, the content all fits into the same box. That’s not a knock on other titles—I subscribe to many of those publications myself. The focus of DOWNTOWN The Magazine is, obviously, downtown. But the range of content blows my mind each issue. In the following pages we cover two wildly different higher education opportunities: coding at V School and fashion at SLCC. There are stories on people who run museums and architecture firms, plus holiday events, Dine O’ Round, historical buildings, street art and renovations to Vivint Smart Home Arena. It’s enough to make an editor's head spin. And I wouldn't have it any other way. No matter what your interest is, downtown has it. Enjoy this issue; we hope it inspires you to discover something new in your city or rediscover an old favorite. Cheers! Nick Como, Editor, DOWNTOWN The Magazine DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017


navigator: move


Enterprise Enterprise CarCar Share Share

GREENbike greenbikeslc.org Open year-round, GREENbike makes getting around fun. Plus, it is an easy way to stay warm by pedaling up to your next meeting or lunch spot no matter the season. Daily or annual passes allow unlimited user rides for 30 or 60 minutes and remove the usual excuses for not riding a bike, such as specific clothing and security. No special attire is required. When bikes are not in use, they are securely docked at a nearby station awaiting the next user.



RIDE SHARING Utilizing smart phone apps, services such as Lyft and Uber provide on-demand rides. Users can call a car directly to their location and be on their way in mere minutes, 24 hours a day. You can, of course, go old school, and call or hail a cab.

uber.com | lyft.com

JINGLE BUS downtown.org/jingle All aboard the Downtown Jingle Bus! Beginning Friday, November 24 through December 24, downtown holiday season visitors can hop on and off the holidaythemed ride circulating between The Gateway, Temple Square, City Creek Center, Gallivan Plaza and Capitol Theatre.

TRAX rideuta.com Red, blue or green? Downtown is the hub for all three rail lines, and TRAX is free in the Central Business District. All major downtown landmarks and destinations are located within this FREE FARE ZONE, providing an accessible option to travel around downtown. Park once and hit all your favorite downtown spots via a warm train car. UTA’s network connects the University of Utah, SLC International Airport and SL Central Station, which accesses bus and FrontRunner lines, through downtown.

Shoppers will find the free service especially useful connecting the two malls downtown, and sightseers will enjoy abundant holiday lights and storefront decorations. Those looking to learn fun downtown facts will enjoy the narration provided by volunteer hosts. I



navigator: services see Harmons City Creek 135 E 100 South

Accuscan Health Imaging 18 N Rio Grande St

Lenscrafters-The Gateway Barber Shops Salons

18 N Rio Grande St

Sanctuary Day Spa

Gateway Aesthetics Institute and Laster Cen

18 N Rio Grande St

18 N Rio Grande St

Grocery Stores Automotive

Salt Lake Chiropractic Sports & Wellness 18 N Rio Grande St

Dry Cleaners Health Services Clothing Tailors

Estilo Salon

Studio H20 Salon & Nail

380 W 200 South

167 S Rio Grande

Gateway Dental Arts 440 W 200 South Jade Market

Ardeo Salon 353 W 200 South

353 W 200 South

Barbiere 341 W Pierpoint Ave

Tony Caputo’s Market & Deli 314 W 300 South

Phillips 66 300 W 400 South

New Pathways Recovery and Wellness 435 W 400 South



Crossroads Psychotherapy 275 E South Temple

Eagle Gate Dental 32 N State

Swinton Counseling 275 E South Temple

VRx Pharmacy

Big O Tires

50 E South Temple #145


178 E South Temple

Monarch Dental 370 E South Temple

Nordstrom 55 S West Temple


Deseret Barber Shop

250 S 200 East

135 E Social Hall Ave

Top Alterations

Harmons City Creek

36 S State

135 E 100 South

Beckett & Robb 150 S Main

Maverik Headquarters 185 S State

City Creek Dental 175 S West Temple

Ray’s Barber Shop 154 S Main

Image Eyes Optical

Salon NV

222 S Main

250 S 200 East

Nick James Hair Salon

Market on Main St.

250 S 200 East

Happy Nails

241 E 300 South

268 S Main

Downtown Chiropractic & Massage Therapy

235 S Broadway

D’Antii LLC

Mid City Salon

247 E Broadway


46 W 300 South

Henrie’s Dry Cleaners

204 E Broadway

223 E 300 South

The Bureau

Broadway Eye Clinic Naga Studio

281 S Weechquootee Pl

350 S 200 East

250 E 300 South

City Barbers 241 E 300 South

Perry’s Barber Shop 376 S State

Array Salon 375 S Main

Capstone Counseling Center 357 S 200 East

Know about a service we should include on our map? Send it to greg@downtownslc.org, and we'll add it to the next edition. DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017


navigator: discover see

New Face in Town: Regent Street


egent Street, on the backside of the new Eccles Theater and 111 Main, serves many purposes. This reimagined thoroughfare is the entrance to the Black Box theater, where small arts groups perform, and provides access to parking structures for theatergoers. That’s the functional part. Regent is also utilitarian in connecting City Creek Center and Gallivan Center, as well as being thoughtfully designed to host sidewalk performances and street events on its own. Add to that a wide array of restaurants, painted murals and mid-block access to Main Street, and it’s easy to see the planners and designers thought of it all! We asked our staff what their


favorite thing about Regent Street is. Here’s what they said: Greg Yerkes: The ability to

close the curbless street for festivals and street parties.

Ryan Mack: Pretty Bird! Who doesn’t love Nashville Hot Chicken? Get your fix right here on Regent, created by celeb chef Viet Pham. Kristin Beck: It’s potential as

a public space that is creatively utilized and executed well. Looking forward to a creative and social space!

Nancy Le: The new Regent

Hotel, a boutique hotel planned for the 200 South corner.


Say hello to your brand new, bigger, better Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC), arriving in 2020. The new SLC will replace the three existing terminals with one large, modern terminal that has the capacity to meet the ever-growing demands of a major air transportation hub. To learn more, visit SLCairport.com



navigator: see

The famous Christmas lights on the 35 acres of Temple Square consist of thousands of bulbs and preparations that begin in August.

Temple Square Temple Square boasts one of the largest holiday lighting displays in the country November 24 to New Year's Day


Temple Square includes two visitor centers where people can learn more about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints through art galleries and interactive exhibits.



he centerpiece is the magnificent Salt Lake Temple of Temple Square, a six-spired granite edifice, which took Mormon pioneers 40 years to complete. The unique domed Tabernacle, built in 1867, is home to the renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Organ recitals are presented daily, and the public is invited to Thursday choir rehearsals and Sunday morning broadcasts of Music and the Spoken Word, which is the longest-running continuous network radio broadcast in the world. Complimentary tours of Temple Square are offered in more than 40 languages. Temple Square includes two visitor centers where people can learn more about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints through art galleries and interactive exhibits. The North Visitors’ Center features an 11-foot replica of Thorvaldsen’s

Christus statue. Exhibits at the South Visitors’ Center include a scaled model of the Salt Lake Temple, which provides a glimpse inside the historic building. In the southwest corner of the Square, is the Assembly Hall, which hosts free concerts and recitals on weekends. Historic buildings, libraries, a museum, and the Conference Center, along with landscaped open spaces, have been added to the original 10-acre block, creating the 35 acres at Temple Square. Travelers who have layovers at the Salt Lake International Airport can take a free shuttle to Temple Square, and take a tour while they are waiting for their next flight. I Visitor Activies All venues are free and open to the public. For information, visit: visittemplesquare.com

When you come to Utah, be sure to visit

TEMPLE SQUARE in the heart of Salt Lake City Tours are available in more than 30 languages

Many venues to choose from, and all are free


© Busath.com

Your tour group can:

to the glorious music of the famed Mormon Tabernacle Choir, rehearsing and performing in the Tabernacle on Temple Square. They also perform in the 21,000-seat Conference Center. See visittemplesquare.com for details. your roots in the FamilySearch Center, where helpful volunteers can assist in retrieving family history information from the world’s largest repository of genealogical records.


through two upscale visitors’ centers that include the Christus statue by Danish sculptor Thorvaldsen. Visit the interactive map of ancient Jerusalem (kids love it!) and much more.

Step into the past,

Mark Cannon, © 1989 IRI


where the story of family life of yesteryear will unfold room by room in the Beehive House, the seat of government in early Utah.

For information on these and many other fascinating venues on Temple Square, go to templesquare.com, or call 800-453-3860. © 2015 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. PD50020206

navigator: live


12 Holiday Traditions The holidays in downtown SLC are a magical time. From the light-wrapped trees to the thousands of shoppers, the streets of downtown are vibrant and chock-full of cheer. Salt Lakers take the holiday season very seriously, and years of planning intricate and extravagant performances have led to some great traditions. Here are some of our favorites: Gateway, Temple Square, City Creek Center, Gallivan Plaza, Eccles Theater and Capitol Theatre.

Lights at Temple Square One of downtown’s most popular holiday traditions. Featuring around one million lights, Temple Square draws droves of people from the Intermountain West. If you need to warm up, head into the Assembly Hall to catch a free musical performance. (Runs through January 1) 4

The Nutcracker Tchaikovsky’s holiday classic is back at Capitol Theatre with brand new stage sets and special effects. Don’t miss the first and longestrunning production of The Nutcracker in the nation! (December 2 - 30) 1

Macy’s Candy Windows A holiday tradition as rich as the candies that create these works of art. Look for the themed hidden components in each of the windows! (Through January 1 @ City Creek Center) 2


Mormon Tabernacle Choir From presidential inaugurations to expositions across the world, the “MoTab” has been creating holiday memories for more than 100 years! The choir regularly holds practices that are open to the public and will have several ticketed holiday performances throughout December. (See the full concert listing at mormontabernaclechoir.org) 5

Jingle Bus All aboard the Downtown Jingle Bus! Beginning Friday, November 24 through 3


December 24, downtown holiday season visitors can hop on and off the holiday-themed ride circulating between The

Utah Symphony Performs Messiah Sing-In Sing Hallelujah with the Utah Symphony. Handel’s Messiah is one of the most performed pieces of music in the world, and there’s no better way to kick off the holiday season in downtown SLC. (November 25 & 26 @ Abravanel Hall) 6

Winter Market at Rio Grande The holidays aren’t complete without some extravagant meals, and Utah has some amazing local food. Head down to the Winter Market to stock up on local produce, meats, cheeses and 7

desserts for all of your family gatherings. Throughout the month of December, you can also find some unique handmade gifts made by Utah’s talented artists. (Every Saturday, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.) Utah Jazz Basketball Cheer on the home team and check out the newly remodeled Vivint Smart Home Arena! Don’t have tickets? Join the watch party on the new outdoor screen and plaza. Indoor fans will enjoy new cushioned seats and a variety of local food options. (Multiple games in December. Check for tickets at nba.com/jazz) 8

SantaCon Eat some milk and cookies, and grab your red Santa hat. You and hundreds of other Santas will sleigh from bar to bar spreading holiday cheer. (See the stops and register at santaconslc.com) 9

Black Friday Shopping Put on your running shoes and work off that Thanksgiving meal. There will be deals aplenty in downtown SLC. Get your holiday shopping done early and save some dough at the same time. And don’t miss the plethora of small businesses and boutique shops for something unique. 10

Ice Skating at The Gallivan The Gallivan Center ice skating rink is situated in the heart of downtown and features more than 300,000 lights. Bring the family or a date to the most scenic skating rink in the state. The Gallivan Center ice skating rink is open all winter. 11

Community New Year’s Countdown Ring in 2018 with a New Year’s downtown. This year’s NYE celebration will take place at the revamped Gateway Plaza and feature a midnight countdown, hot drinks, live music, dancing and more. I 12



navigator: drink


Hot and Happening

Take a stroll through downtown Salt Lake City and you will find the coffee movement is alive and well. Salt Lake City offers a wide variety of destinations to enjoy a cuppa joe. Shayli Hone made sure she pointed out the unique local art on the walls, and let me know the coffee is sourced locally from the Meridian Coffee Co. She also suggested I try the ‘Van Halen,’ a delicious vanilla hazelnut latte. Like the hit 80’s song, it made me want to “jump!”

Eva’s Bakery Boulangerie 155 S Main Just a few steps south of City Creek Center, past the shiny new Eccles Theater, you will encounter a bright blue storefront and a wonderful French bakery experience. Featuring an amazing staff, Eva’s coffee is as hot as it is fresh. Brewed and served with a smile and lots of love, plus an assortment of delectable French pastries for the choosing. Three Pines Coffee 165 S Main Keep heading south on Main and you will find


yourself in midst of Three Pines… Coffee that is. Owner’s Meg Frampton and Nick Price started their Salt Lake City coffee venture from a cart and have grown into a fine establishment. Meg’s sister Jade, who helps with day-to-day operations, says, “Three Pines’ focus is on quality and simplicity. We want our patrons to enjoy the experience and not be distracted by a complicated menu.” Coffee is sourced from Heart, a small branch coffee supplier out of Portland. Try the ‘Beehive Baller,’ a daily brew, hot or cold with chocolate, vanilla and delicious house-made almond milk.


Nostalgia 248 E 100 South Venture up 100 South and you’ll find a quaint neighborhood coffee house with a fitting name: Nostalgia. The space is a regular spot for workfrom-anywhere locals and students due to their super fast Wi-Fi. Barista

The Rose Establishment 235 S 400 West Craving amazing food and baked goods along with brewed-to-order coffee? Look no further than The Rose Establishment. Owner Erica O’Brien has created something special in this unique location off of 400 West. Try one of their rotating drinks of the week with house-made cashew milk. The coffee is sourced from Four Barrel Coffee (from San Francisco), and is one of the most spacious areas to sip your daily brew.

The People’s Coffee 221 E 300 South Along one of downtown’s most unique rows of shops and storefronts is an ‘intimate coffee’ house: The People’s Coffee. You won’t find anything blended here, but you will get your coffee the way you want it, according to barista Justin Runyan. The People’s Coffee pride themselves on their mochas, in-house cold brew and their commitment to locally-sourced coffee, pastries and bagels. Plus, portraits of— you guessed it—people adorn the walls.

Cafe d’ bolla 249 E 400 South Cafe d’ bolla literally put Salt Lake City on the national map when it comes to coffee. With their multiple

awards and Zagat’s rating, everything John Piquet and his wife Yiching do is around the excellence of the coffee, one cup at a time. This truly artisan coffee house features seasonal and small batch coffees roasted in-house. Be sure to visit and embrace the experience of one of Cafe d’ bolla’s siphoned brewed coffees. Just don’t ask for it “to go”—this coffee is intended to be sipped on site and at a prescribed pace. Coffee Garden on Main 254 S Main Located in the Eborn book store on Main St., Coffee Garden on Main sources its coffee from local Caffe Ibis out of Logan. According to barista Saorise Johnston-Dick, they serve a lot of lattes to a loyal customer base of office workers and artists alike. When asked about her constant smile, Saorise said, “This is a great local business, and they do a great job supporting other local vendors as well as their employees.” Nordstrom EBar 55 S West Temple If you find yourself strolling through City Creek Center,

shopping bags in tow, you can stop off at Nordstrom EBar located on the center’s west side. EBar manager and barista Brittany Reed said, “We try and do everything the best quality we can. We’re innovative, constantly updating recipes and always trying to improve product.” Did you know Nordstrom has their own branded coffee? Grab a cold brew, and shop ’til you drop. Maverik 185 S State Who knew you would find a barista and porcelain cups at a convenience store? Located at the corner of 200 South and State St., Maverik Coffee is the real deal. Full selection of coffee from origins around the world, nitro brew and they even do pour overs!

Beans & Brews 268 S State Located near the Gallivan Center a few steps from the corner of Broadway and State, Beans and Brews is known as the home of ‘High Altitude Roasting’. Although according to manager Terry Bryant, this store’s loyal clientele seem to like the sweeter side of coffee. “We seem to sell a lot of Mr. B’s,” a frozen latte mixed with just the right amount of Ghirardelli white chocolate cocoa and Irish Cream. Salt Lake Roasting Co. at the Library 210 E 400 South You may know the pioneer of coffee roasting in Salt Lake City,

but did you know they have a location in the City Library? Wonder at the amazing architecture of the library, check out a book and enjoy an iced London Fog or a simple black, single-origin roast served up by barista and manager Barbbenly Bergara—all in one stop! Toasters 30 E 300 South, 215 S State & 151 W 200 South Touting three convenient downtown locations, Toasters is more food-focused with a delicious selection of crafted sandwiches, but it is a popular place for downtown workers to pop in and grab their morning joe. Featuring the world famous Illy brand of Italian coffee. Dunkin Donuts 217 E 400 South Coffee aficionados may cringe to see Dunkin Donuts on this list, but their coffee just always tastes amazing with a handful of Munchkins donut holes! Millions of passionate New Englanders can’t be wrong, and lines formed down the block when Dunkin opened a few years back. A convenient location near the library TRAX stop on 400 South, Dunkin Donuts is also one of the few downtown coffee places with a drive-through. Starbucks 80 S Main Looking for something familiar? Starbucks also has a location steps away from City Creek Center located on the corner of 100 East and Main St. A unique open space, full of rich architectural details with that familiar menu we’ve all come to know so well. Order a grande Frappuccino if you like it cold and sweet. I






n 2010, Salt Lake City and Salt Lake County entered into an interlocal agreement to devote $500,000 a year to promote art, culture and placemaking in the Cultural Core—an area defined by the boundaries of North Temple, 400 South, I-15 and 300 East. In August 2017, Downtown SLC Presents was awarded the contract to execute an action plan that took several years of hard work and thoughtful consideration to create. With the aim of highlighting artists, performance

groups and events, as well as creating new opportunities for residents across the state to engage in the arts, the Cultural Core is a game-changer for Salt Lake City. With no shortage of inspiring personalities and compelling projects, this new Cultural Core section of our magazine intends to share some of these stories and individuals with our readers. Meet Dana Hernandez, who spearheaded the Flying Objects public art installation you see levitating above your

head on 300 South. We’ll also introduce you to Jared Steffensen from the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Duke Johnson from Clark Planetarium and Travis Reid of Discovery Gateway. These museum folks are some of the most dedicated in the biz. This year also marks the 40th anniversary of Utah Opera, one of the country’s premier performance groups. And after 40 years, they are still full of surprises. Enjoy! DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017



Flying Objects The third and final installation in this public art project adds shape, color and interest to the city streets




owntown is made more whimsical, interesting and unique through arts and culture. Our one-ofa-kind murals, installations and sculptures all add to downtown’s colorful presence. We’re privileged to have a plethora of public art downtown—art free and accessible to everyone— supported by both private and public entities. Utah’s capital city has a longstanding tradition of financially supporting artists and the arts in all forms to add to the city’s diversity and vitality. Public art, along with architecture, landscape and people, create a unique identity distinct to our place. Recognizing the social and economic benefits realized through an aesthetic experience in public spaces, Salt Lake City’s Public Art Program’s purpose is to add high-quality, site-specific artists’ work to natural and built environments. In fact, the formalized tradition of allocating one percent of eligible City project funds for commissioning artists for services and site-specific artwork to be integrated into new construction projects stretches back to 1984, when the City adopted a Percent-For-Art ordinance. “The City’s long-standing dedication to hiring and promoting local artists using a solid public art selection process has encouraged many artists to stretch their abilities and styles to the three dimensional,” says Kristin Beck, the Downtown Alliance DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017


director of urban activation. “The accessibility of these public art pieces engages and exposes the public in ways they would not have experienced otherwise.” In addition to funding through the Percentfor-Art ordinance, the program partners worked with the Redevelopment Agency of Salt Lake City (RDA) to integrate public art in city-wide project areas. In 1990, the Board of Directors of the RDA approved and 24


authorized a Percent-for-Art provision to be incorporated in development contracts executed by the RDA. In addition, many additional RDA public art projects are managed by the Salt Lake City Arts Council under the direction of the Salt Lake Art Design Board—a five-member mayoral appointed body. Since that time, the Arts Council has successfully partnered with the RDA on several projects in many districts with new opportunities arising on a regular basis. One of the most recognizable and celebrated projects, the Flying Objects series, began in 2005 when downtown Salt Lake City was under considerable construction for City Creek Center, one of the nation’s largest mixed-use downtown redevelopment projects. The project was designed to stage a series of temporary, rotating sculptures, installed in three locations to add shape, color and interest to the streetscape through a curated series of sculptures in a range of styles and materials. “The Flying Objects series has been cherished in our community and valued by our visitors,” says Beck. “It’s offered many local artists the opportunity to participate in a commissioned public art process and has garnered them an amazing amount of exposure.” Since 2005, the Flying Objects project offered more than 45 established and emerging Utah artists an opportunity to participate in a temporary public art project and create one-ofa-kind sculptures. Each of the first four series was installed for a period of two to three years. If there was ever a Flying Object you were particularly fond of—say, the UFO, the “paper” plane or the man on the trapeze— feel free to reach out to the Salt Lake City Arts Council because they could be yours! After each object’s temporary run above the street, they were returned to the artist to sell, repurpose or enjoy. Many have been given new homes in public and private spaces, but some are still available. After the fourth round of Flying Objects was completed, it was determined that the fifth iteration of the series would be a final, permanent installation. And in April this year, 18 new sculptures were erected above the 300 South medians from 400 West to 300 East. The new series has already begun to weave itself into the cultural fabric of our community and will be an amusing and beloved chapter in downtown’s evolving story for years to come. I

When you need to know why.

Listen every weekday at 9am and 7pm on KUER 90.1 or stream online at kuer.org or on KUER’s mobile app.


Meet the exhibit managers who help entertain, captivate and create wonder at three beloved downtown museums 26


Durand “Duke” Johnson is the Education and Exhibits Manager at Clark Planetarium.


don’t have any numbers to back this up, but I would bet that Salt Lake City has one of the highest numbers of museums per capita in the country,” speculated Clark Planetarium Education and Exhibits Manager Durand “Duke” Johnson as toddlers and tweens bobbed and weaved around him on a typically busy afternoon inside the planetarium’s gallery/lobby space. As anyone who’s visited one knows, a museum is only as relevant as its exhibits. Here we introduce you to the people who make relevancy happen at three of downtown Salt Lake City’s most enduring museums: the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Discovery Gateway Children’s Museum and the Clark Planetarium. Durand “Duke” Johnson Though the words fall short of capturing the blood, sweat and tears involved in the actual process, resourceful creativity is a good place to begin in describing how Clark Planetarium Education and Exhibits Manager Durand “Duke” Johnson headed up execution of the Clark Planetarium’s bevy of new exhibits, unveiled last October. There’s the weeklong journey to Trinidad, Colo., that Johnson and Thanksgiving Point’s Cliff Miles embarked on to bring back what’s now the largest on-display specimen of the 4-million-year-old Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary (a thin band of rock dating to the extinction of the dinosaurs) in the world. Or there’s the hours of trial and error that went into creating the tornado exhibit, flanked by storm photos Johnson took himself. “All the staff went way above and beyond the call of duty to enable us to pull off the [museum’s] refresh project,” Johnson said. Johnson, grew up as a “North Dakota farm kid,” taught high school math and was a planetarium director in North Carolina prior to relocating to Salt Lake City 14 years ago to manage exhibits at the Clark Planetarium. What fuels his enthusiasm to, say, hit the road for a week to dig up a piece of rock? “I get to pick one of three or four hats to put on every day,” he said. “And it’s all related to science and engineering, which, at the end of the day, is what we want to encourage others to do through these exhibits.” In addition to the K-Pg rock and the tornado simulator, some of the new exhibits DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017


Travis Reid, of Discovery Gateway, is a believer in “learning through play.”

on display now as part of the planetarium’s $3.5 million refresh include a digital lunar lander simulator and the Defend the Earth video game where users protect our planet from an asteroid field—both of which were designed, built and perfected by planetarium staff members Jesse Warner, Chris Roberts, Cody Lavery and David Meinzer. In fact, according to Johnson, the Clark Planetarium is among very few institutions of its kind to create and develop its own interactive digital exhibits, an expertise that Johnson hopes to offer to other museums to support the planetarium over the long term. “Last fall’s relaunch was more of a beginning of what’s to come rather than an end of something,” he said. “Anywhere you see an open space in the gallery is where something new will go. We plan to bring more effort to bear on this experience by offering more hands-on programming, partnerships with other local institutions and more outreach.” Travis Reid Over at Discovery Gateway Children’s Museum, Senior Manager of Creative and Exhibits Travis Reid’s easy manner and deliberate speech are indicative of his north-Texas roots. “I was born and raised in Dallas where we like to say ‘y’all’ quite a bit,” Reid said with a grin. After earning a BFA in sculpture and then an MBA in project management, Reid took a position in his home state with Billings Productions. There he designed, developed and delivered exhibits to museums throughout the country. “I got to come to Salt Lake City when I worked on a dinosaur exhibit for the Hogle Zoo and thought it was so beautiful here,”



he said. And then in April of 2017, when his current position opened at Discovery Gateway, Reid jumped at the chance to move to Utah. “I’ve always been attracted to the idea of learning through play, and so this job has felt like an ideal fit for me,” he said. Part of Reid’s vision for Discovery Gateway is a focus on interaction and the use of technology. “The smartphone was yet to come on the market when this museum opened [at the Gateway] 10 years ago. There’s been a boom in technology since then. The possibilities available now to create even better exhibits are endless,” he said. To address this goal, Reid is embarking on a thorough inventory of existing exhibits to help him formulate a long-view plan for improvements and new exhibits. “I want to find out what’s working and why, and focus our efforts on a kid’s perspective,” he said. The yardstick he’ll use to critique Discovery Gateway’s existing exhibits will, of course, include the gold standard for interactive museum exhibits: how appealing it is to multiple users, does it result in multiple outcomes, and can it be accessed from multiple sides, among other parameters. But Reid also plans to focus on the larger, thematic picture by analyzing how the museum’s different exhibits draw children through the entire space. “I believe that museums across the U.S. now incorporate and recognize the benefits of using hands-on interactive exhibits, which was always a key design feature of children’s museums.” Reid said. While Reid looks forward to working with the museum’s staff to make Discovery Gateway’s exhibits even better (“Everyone here—from the graphic designer to our on-site carpenter to the development, and marketing departments—works really hard to bring every exhibit to life. It’s very much a team-oriented atmosphere,” Reid said.), several new experiences are already in the pipeline, with rollouts planned to coincide with the museum’s 40th anniversary in the fall of 2018. Those new exhibits include a refurbished and updated Water Play exhibit and a new climbing-based activity in the museum’s Garden gallery. “I’d love to create something that allows kids to experience that gallery using gross-motor and decision-making skills, ultimately being rewarded with seeing the museum from a unique viewpoint,” Reid said.

Jared Steffensen “Like most recent MFA sculpture grads, the first job I took after earning my degree was in construction,” said Jared Steffensen, curator of exhibitions at the Utah Museum to Contemporary Art, jokingly. “In all seriousness, it actually felt really good to get back to a place where I was making functional things after being in school so long.” As it turned out, the building skills he learned while remodeling bathrooms and kitchens came in handy when, in 2012, Steffensen joined the staff at UMOCA as curator of education. “My first big task was building the artist-inresidence program, which included everything from fleshing out what the program would be, to physically constructing the spaces [in the museum] where the resident artists work,” Steffensen said. The result is a program that not only provides resident artists with a rent-free space to create their work, but gives them opportunities for higher visibility both inside and outside the state through professional

development workshops, special access to visiting artists and curators, and exhibition opportunities. “When I finished my undergrad, the opportunities for working artists who made work like I did were so few and far between, I thought I’d probably leave Utah and never come back,” Steffensen said. “This residency is about creating a community for artists here and hopefully elevating the profile of that community nationally.” Steffensen’s UMOCA job description shifted from education to curating exhibits last October, but the overarching mission of his work—making conceptual art part of the larger conversation—has remained virtually the same. An exhibit on display at UMOCA now through January 6 that embodies that mission is “Cities of Conviction,” a collection of contemporary art by Saudi Arabian artists. Steffensen curated the exhibit to highlight work that delves into issues common to both Utah and Saudi Arabia, such as the struggle over

natural resources, pilgrimage and the tension surrounding commercial development around cultural heritage sites. Steffensen began developing the concept for “Cities of Conviction” at the suggestion of Dan Mills, director of the Bates College Museum of Art, and Stephen Stapleton, founder of Culturunners, an organization seeking out ideologies common to both the United States and the Middle East. At the same time, UMOCA is also hosting its first international artist-in-residence, Balqis Al Rashed, a conceptual artist and designer born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and raised in Beirut for 16 years. While in residence, Rashed is working on “pieces that focus on the creation of meanings, practices, and dichotomies in respect to the collective, identity and the self.” Her work is featured as part of “Cities of Conviction.” “We feel this exhibit really hits the mark of making conceptual art part of a bigger conversation while creating a place for a largely misunderstood community to have a voice at the same time,” Steffensen said. I




Utah Opera Celebrates 40 Years of Operatic Traditions


ewind 40 years to 1977, where Utah’s performing arts landscape was young but full of promise. Ballet West was beginning its 15th season and Utah Shakespeare Festival had just marked 15 years of operation. Utah Symphony Music Director Maurice Abravanel was celebrating 30 years of transformative leadership, overseeing the organization’s evolution from a part-time Depression-era ensemble into a full-time orchestra. This same year, Utah-born tenor Glade Peterson launched Utah Opera with its first production of Puccini’s “La Bohème” in January 1978 (the opera scheduled to open Utah Opera’s 40th Anniversary Season in October 2017 in commemoration). His 30


dream? To provide Utahns with access to the great operatic tradition he had grown to love after more than a decade of singing at top opera houses in Europe and the U.S. During the company’s first 12 years, Glade developed the Utah Opera Company from the fledgling stage to a company known as the fastest-growing in its budget range in the country. Utah Opera outreach programs in schools also blossomed under his vision as the company introduced the art form to students throughout the Intermountain West. Glade’s passion extended onto the national stage, where he served on the board of OPERA America and for the National Endowment for the Arts’ opera panel. Glade’s legacy of support for homegrown talent—from artisans, craftspeople, local opera performers and musicians—set

the stage for a tradition of excellence that continues to this day. Utah Opera is known for staging innovative productions at the Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre from both the standard repertoire as well as the American Opera canon, featuring rising international opera singers. The Utah Opera Production Studios are a stateof-the-art resource where new sets and costumes are created, built and stored. They house an inventory of 19 full production sets and a warehouse of meticulously caredfor costumes for 45 full productions, and are home to a rental program utilized by many other regional opera houses. Most seasons, in addition to the four mainstage Utah Opera productions, the Production Studios provide costumes (with alterations provided




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a wide range of theater stages, making it possible for more companies to present this important 21st-century opera. As living creators of this contemporary opera, Heggie and Scheer will be in Salt Lake City for the Utah debut, and have been heavily involved in its creative reimagining from the start. Stage Director Kristine McIntyre brings to the production her expertise in directing Renderings of costumes for Utah Opera’s upcoming adaptation of new, contemporary Gene Scheer’s “Moby-Dick,” premiering January 2018. and American works, by an in-house staff of stitchers) and sets for including Jake Heggie’s “Dead Man Walking” as many as 18 other productions across the and “The End of the Affair,” as well as a Utah country. Opera production of Carlisle Floyd’s “Of Mice As the company celebrates its 40th and Men,” among other operas. Costumes by Anniversary Season, it will utilize the talents Jessica Jahn, who last designed costumes for of its costume and scenic artisans when Utah Opera’s 2012 “Il Trovatore,” and sets by it presents the Utah debut of American Erhard Rom, who has designed settings for composer Jake Heggie and librettist over 200 productions across the globe and Gene Scheer’s “Moby-Dick” in January whose design work has been displayed in the 2018, featuring all new costumes and sets Prague Quadrennial International Design constructed at Utah Opera Production Exhibition and at the National Opera Studios. Center in Manhattan, will be constructed An adaptation of the classic novel by at the Utah Opera Production Studios by Herman Melville, “Moby-Dick” was first local Utah artisans. Ririe-Woodbury Dance co-commissioned by Dallas Opera and four Company Artistic Director Daniel Charon, other opera companies and, since its premiere who was last involved in the company’s in April 2010, has become one of the most March 2016 staging of “Aїda,” fills out the successful operas of the new millennium. design team to inject drama and dance to the Utah Opera Artistic Director Christopher production, similar to his collaboration with McBeth spoke with Heggie and Scheer about Ms. McIntyre for Utah Opera’s acclaimed the success of their opera five years ago. “The 2015 production of “The Pearl Fishers.” original production…is of such a grand scale “I’m proud to be a part of Utah Opera’s that it only fits a few stages in the world, 40th Anniversary Season celebrations. It and [I] said ‘Wouldn’t it be great to give this is an ideal opportunity to look back and opera even more life and create a production pay homage to the legacy of founder Glade capable of playing in as wide a variety of Peterson,” said Utah Symphony | Utah Opera theatres in the U.S. and beyond as possible?’” President and CEO Paul Meecham. “Of all art explained McBeth. “Knowing the reputation forms, perhaps it is opera, with its theatrical of Utah Opera’s scenic and costume artisans, blend of song and words, which has the they enthusiastically agreed and gave their most potential to express emotions in vivid, blessing for us to create a new production to affecting colors. The collaboration of the introduce this powerful, modern masterpiece artists assembled for Utah Opera’s 2017-18 to many more audiences across the country.” season promises to realize spectacular live The new Utah Opera production, coexperiences for our audiences worthy of an produced with Pittsburgh Opera, will anniversary celebration.” reimagine the opera’s storytelling arc, For more information, visit www. featuring a versatile set designed to adapt to utahopera.org. I 32


Utah Opera Facts

Utah Opera was founded in 1977 and began with performances in Utah’s schools. Its first mainstage production was Puccini’s “La bohème” at Kingsbury Hall in January 1978. In February 1979, Utah Opera began performing in the Capitol Theatre, newly refurbished by the Bicentennial Commission to be a performance home for Utah Opera and Ballet West. In 1985, Utah Opera was the youngest regional company to run supertitles at every performance. Anne Ewers was hired as Utah Opera General Director in 1991, and continued as President & CEO until 2007 after the company’s 2002 administrative merger with Utah Symphony. Christopher McBeth was appointed Utah Opera Artistic Director in 2003. Utah Opera presents five performances of four productions each year at the Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre. Most regional companies present one to three performances of 3-4 productions. Utah Opera plans and rehearses for performances at their Production Studios where costumes, props, and set pieces are made, rented to other companies, and stored. Utah Opera’s education department brings performances to approximately 70,000 students each year free of charge, which accounts for approximately 10 percent of school opera audiences nationwide. Utah Opera has costumes for 45 full productions in its inventory, all available for rental to other opera companies. The most popular are “La bohème,” “Madama Butterfly,” and “The Barber of Seville.”

Season 2017 - 2018 Parallax Sep 28 - 30 | 7:30pm Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center Choreography by: Kate Weare Raja Feather Kelly Daniel Charon

Strata Feb 2 - 3 | 7:30pm

Return Apr 26 - 28 | 7:30pm

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Regent Street Black Box at the Eccles Theater

Featuring excerpts from six diverse pieces representing a cross-section of our contemporary repertory.

Together Alone Trilogy: Part 3 by Daniel Charon with a live performance of an original score by the Salt Lake Electric Ensemble

Introducing our new Moving Parts Family Series, Saturday, September 30, February 3, and April 28 at 1:00pm! Buy season tickets now and save 25%, and get VIP access to Opening and Closing Night Parties; discounts for UtahPresents: Doug Varone and Dancers | Feb 23 - 24, 2018; discounts at Discovery Gateway, Peery Hotel, and more!

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The Eccles Thea Lighting up the downtown landscape


omething new has taken center stage downtown. In its first months of existence, the state-of-the-art Eccles Theater has already sold 320,000 tickets for shows ranging from The Lion King, Jay Leno and The Book of Mormon to David Sedaris, Bill Maher and Kenny Rogers, drawing people and business into the entire downtown district, attracting its audiences to explore the area, get to know it and stick around a while.




A hardworking catalyst “In our initial discussions, we expected a certain number of shows at the theater,” explains Steve Boulay, COO of MagicSpace Entertainment, the company that has partnered with the Eccles to present and produce the theater’s shows. “But in the first nine months of operations, the Eccles Theater has exceeded our hopes for programming, attendance and economic impact.” Performing arts often require an ongoing stream of donations and funding to get by—even in Utah, the state with the highest percentage of its population attending performing arts shows. “But the Eccles Theater funds itself, full boat,” confirms Boulay. Beyond funding itself, the theater is a “shot of caffeine that woke up our downtown,” says Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams. “When people saw the investment that was being made in that theater, others were willing to follow suit and make a similar investment with housing, restaurants and other businesses. It’s more than a cultural offering. It’s a catalyst, an economic driver.” Ticket sales themselves have brought an off-the-charts $21.5 million in revenue, plus $1.3 million in sales tax revenue, plus millions more in local advertising dollars, and pay for stagehands, wardrobe staff and theater employees. The exact infusion of extra revenue into surrounding downtown businesses is tough to track, but local business owners confirm the difference is night and day. “You can just draw a straight line in our case, connecting show nights with the kind of business we do. It’s a direct DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017


The theater’s colorful mix of show types draw those who already self-identified as Broadway fans—as well as the fans of the musicians who perform there, the science enthusiasts who flock to see Neil deGrasse Tyson, the kids who come for Cinderella, the comedy lovers who come for an evening of standup. To come to the Eccles, people don’t need to selfidentify as “arts patrons.” They’re families, people from the suburbs and people who drove half a day to come for a show. Mayor McAdams calls the Eccles a “gateway to the other arts offerings here in Utah. People who may not attend performances frequently might go to the Eccles and then try other venues. They might try the symphony, or go to Pioneer Theatre or Capitol Theatre.” When theatergoers come to a show, it sparks new ideas and an interest in coming back to downtown. They figure out parking, learn which TRAX line to take, try out a new restaurant, and notice businesses they may not have seen if they haven’t strolled the area in a while. “It’s fun,” says Parrent. “A lot of new people are coming in to Martine, and with the theater, we’re getting people who may not have tried a downtown dining experience before. It’s a great thing to get new customers, and it’s even better to show newcomers what it’s like to enjoy an independent downtown restaurant.”

correlation—we’re abnormally busy until curtain time, and then we resume regular business after that. We definitely feel the effects, in a positive way,” says Rich Parrent, owner and manager of Martine Café. “I actually put a calendar in the kitchen with every Eccles show on it, so we can staff accordingly.”

A fresh crowd comes for the shows— and strolls the streets There aren’t just more people in dining booths and barstools downtown—there are new people. Fresh faces queuing up at the ticket office and strolling around with friends and family before and after each show. “An average of 50 percent of the audience in any given Eccles show is attending their first show there. That’s an incredible number of new patrons,” says Boulay. 36


The Eccles takes a seat among its new community School-aged kids line up for matinee shows. Friends pose for photos in the theater lobby. Bartenders ask guests about the evening’s performance. Restaurant servers keep showtimes in mind when they bring a check to a table. Couples stroll to the City Creek Center fountain after a performance. The Eccles has found its place as a day-to-day figure amid downtown comings and goings. “Martine’s doing what we’ve always done before, but now that the Eccles is here, it’s become part of who we are,” says Parrent. “Being next door during the theater construction was really hard. But this is the payoff. This is what we waited for.” The theater has just announced its Broadway shows for the upcoming year—with hotly anticipated heavyweights like Hamilton and Phantom of the Opera on the calendar. There’s already a waiting list for season tickets, which is something both theatergoers and businesses should smile about. It means Salt Lake has fully embraced its new performing-arts player. And the rising tide will lift every (show) boat with it. I

EXPERIENCE What’s Playing at Abravanel Hall Capitol Theatre Eccles Theater The Rose Musicals Ballet

Comedy Theatre

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CODING BACK TO SCHOOL Bootcamp: How to jump start a new career in 12 weeks


f you aren’t familiar with coding bootcamps, they started cropping up five or six years ago in response to a shortage of software developers relative to the fast-growing tech industry. Since then, coding schools have taken off as a lower cost and shorter duration alternative to a four-year degree. And the amazing thing is—they work. I’m currently attending the Web Development Bootcamp at V School in downtown Salt Lake City. It’s a 12-week, skill-based program where students learn how to build websites and applications. They come out full stack developers, which means that they can code the frontend and backend of a website. The frontend is the look, feel and interactivity of the site; whereas the backend is how data is handled, including servers and databases. It’s wild how much ground can be covered in a 12-week bootcamp when spending every day doing hands-on, applied learning. The wildest thing of all, is that students at V School have a very high



job placement rate within six months of graduation. On top of that, many are making the same level of pay as Computer Science graduates from four-year institutions. Odds are, that last part got your attention. When it comes to getting a job in the tech industry, the people who are hiring are more interested in your skillset than a degree. Above all else, they want to know that you can problem solve and code projects. So, when someone applies to a tech company, it’s common for the company to give the applicant a ‘code challenge’ that asks you to solve a problem or build an application. Here’s an example from interviewcake.com: “Write an efficient function that takes stock prices yesterday and returns the best profit I could have made from one purchase and one sale of one Apple stock yesterday.” Bottomline, it really is possible to get a software engineering job right out of a bootcamp like this. It’s possible to get one right out of learning in your basement, too—

but that’s a lot harder to do. Several V School students spun their wheels trying to learn on their own for years before committing to a bootcamp. The structure of a good bootcamp gets you further faster with a curriculum that ensures that you have the solid fundamentals needed to write meaningful code. At V School, class runs Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Students can start earlier if they want, working together on problem-solving skills, or even stay late for optional lectures. It’s an immersive environment where you are your only limiting factor. Becoming a software developer in 12 weeks is not a marathon—it’s a sprint. There is no downtime, no filler, no fat. Students should expect to be busy. There is so much to learn every day, and each day builds on the one before. The main difference between learning at a university and learning at a bootcamp comes from learning in an immersive, skill-based environment. There are no long lectures. We don’t write papers. We code. All. Day. Long.


At the end of the day, there is no doubt that we are better than we were when the day began. The early morning instruction and late lectures are available in part because the V School team doesn’t have an off switch. The entire staff truly cares about making a difference in students lives. They thrive on seeing students ‘get it.’ It’s been really impressive to find teachers available to answer questions any hour of the day or night, weekday or weekend. In my class, we have Jacob ‘The’ Evans and Ben Turner teaching. Jacob is eloquent and self-effacing. He has the kind of natural talent for teaching that makes you respect his competence while also being completely entertained. He is at home in front of a class. Ben is the yin to Jacob’s yang. He is softspoken and methodical in breaking concepts down. He shines when helping students one-on-one and has a talent for letting the person he is helping figure out the answer of their question. They both have a true passion and dedication for teaching. Cohorts at V School are small— there are 12 students in my class. Having a small class size lends itself to quick bonding between students. In my class, we’re constantly joking and razzing each other. It makes it a pleasure to be in class all day, and time passes fast. Some students at V School are current college students trying to get ahead; some are recent college graduates who don’t want to work in their majors. Others are looking for new careers and come from a wide variety of backgrounds. Between cohorts we have a physical therapist, an electrician, a graphic designer, an Uber driver, a social media expert, a musician, a shop owner and a truck driver—just to name a few. The youngest student is 18. The second week of class, he missed a day and we were all wondering where he was. It turned out he was graduating high school. The oldest student in my class is an entrepreneur around 50 years old who wants to manage his developers better. I could go on, but suffice to say V School is a cross-section of what downtown is: dynamic and diverse. As in anything, the people around you have a huge impact on your experience and having such diverse backgrounds creates an amazingly rich environment. We all have our individual strengths, through which everyone helps each other learn.

We’re all here for the same end goal of career building. This isn’t lost on V School. For an hour once a week, there is a class on career skills. Every week it’s a different topic, covering things like resume writing, creating a LinkedIn profile and interviewing skills. Classes also take trips to Q & A sessions with developers at successful, fast-growing companies. It’s an opportunity to learn more about what development jobs are actually like and what skills are valued. I was impressed that the developers we’ve met let us know that the skills we are learning are in high demand and that there are a ton of jobs available in Salt Lake. From downtown to Silicon Slopes, Utah is booming for tech companies, and a skilled workforce is in demand. The Impact Hub on State Street, where V School is located, is also filled with Salt Lake tech. It’s a worksharing space that houses a number of start-ups and emerging tech companies. It’s packed with interesting people, and runs many events and mixers. The networking opportunities by having the school there are invaluable. Another perk is the central downtown location, with the vibrancy and high energy a suburban campus lacks. At lunch, we usually wander over to the Gallivan Center to sit under the trees in the grass and eat lunch with live music playing nearby. On Thursdays, food trucks line the streets and there’s a band. When I’m leaving school there are often concerts at the Gallivan, and the shows are free many nights. There are also a lot of great restaurants, theaters, bars, and art galleries, with City Creek Center nearby. For me, V School has been a great experience, and I would do it again in a heartbeat. The instructors are excellent, my classmates and I are now friends, and I am learning a phenomenal amount. I love being challenged daily. Whether I feel I do well with the day’s challenge or I don’t, I always come out of the day a stronger coder with new skills. Ok, now back to the coding... I DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017











Downtown’s Salt Lake Community College: An artistic hotbed for city students


any downtown regulars might scratch their heads if they saddled up next to a student at Bar X who said they were enrolled in fashion school a couple blocks away. But it’s true: amid the buzz of 400 South and the City Library, the Salt Lake Community College Library Square campus sits, serving as home to the school’s fashion institute, interior design program and paralegal program. While TRAX trains hum along, library patrons come and go, and diners line up for their favorite Stoneground pizzas, a few hundred students take their courses inside the college’s unassuming yellow building. Fashion institute adjunct professor Matt 40


Monson says he was invited to teach at the school’s downtown campus because he’d long been embedded in Salt Lake’s art and fashion scene. An artist and Broadway clothing boutique owner, he featured all locally-made clothing, jewelry and accessories at his shop. He founded the first Salt Lake Fashion Strolls, a sort of foil to traditional fashion shows, where the city street served as runway, boutiques threw open their doors, and students and designers showcased their craft. By joining the fashion college’s faculty, Monson was able to represent Salt Lake’s deepest and most authentically local design community. And he had the chance to cultivate it and share his knowledge and network with up-and-coming students.



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“If you’re looking for traditional runwaystyle fashion, go to New York or Paris. But if you want something rooted in Salt Lake’s unique blend of urban and outdoor fashion, this is an incredible place to study,” Monson explains. “In fact, outdoor fashion and fashion that bridges the outdoor and urban world is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the fashion industry. And we’re in the perfect place to create it.” Living and designing in downtown Salt Lake has given teachers and creators like Monson and his students access to the city’s unique advantages. “It’s been a much more affordable place to live than larger fashion hubs, which allows a lot more experimentation and creativity,” Monson adds. “And the scene is well established enough that we have costume designers, artists and boutique owners within a few blocks.” Recent fashion institute graduate Julia Sullivan agrees the school’s location was a big help. “I lived downtown the entire time I was in Salt Lake Community College’s fashion program. I could commute to campus on bicycle, and I could jump on TRAX to get to a fabric store or buy other supplies. I could step outside the building to get a coffee or lunch, or go out in the evenings with other students. I never had to worry about bringing lunch. There was always something good 42


to eat close by,” she smiles, noting that the Gourmandise Bakery was a particular favorite haunt. By being downtown, the campus never felt strictly scholastic. It offered all the necessary resources, but was well integrated with the rest of the community. “The thing with a fashion program is that you need to be on campus for quite a few hours in the day, so you have access to the sewing machines and other equipment. You’re not just on campus for class—you’re there the entire time you’re working on anything. It’s a lot of hours in one place, so it’s lucky that we were able to get there so easily on public transit and have so many options for eating and nightlife right outside the building,” Sullivan explains. Sullivan started attending the program five years ago, without determining at the outset that she wanted to get a fashion degree. She simply had an interest in sewing and was teaching herself to do it with a borrowed sewing machine. A friend mentioned the community college’s downtown campus had sewing instruction classes. Sullivan applied, just to improve her sewing machine skills. But she caught the bug and stuck around. “Pretty soon, I’d taken every class they offered and earned my degree,” she laughs. “It really started out as ‘Oh, maybe I’ll take this

class—oh, and maybe that one too.” Monson explains that many graduates of the program forge successful careers while staying local. “It’s wonderful to see people committed to following their passion while staying rooted in Salt Lake,” he says. “And it does make some sense logistically as well—we’re within 10 hours of any major western city, and six [driving] hours from the biggest fashion trade show in the world, MAGIC Las Vegas.” Having a campus downtown helps give students a leg up as they start their own careers post-graduation. “By the time they graduate, they’re well networked with our local boutique owners, who all care about nurturing this community and supporting fellow fashion entrepreneurs.” He mentions pro skier and clothing entrepreneur Julian Carr as one example of a local designer finding strong support for his brand, Discrete. “Julian came into my Model Citizen boutique years ago, looking for boutiques willing to carry his line of beanies. There were only a few carrying his product then, but now, with a groundswell of enthusiasm and support, his brand has blossomed into a full lifestyle clothing line that’s distributed internationally,” says Monson. The downtown campus’ program boasts a number of local students and artists who have found success and branched out nationally as well after learning, growing and incubating in the Salt Lake scene. “Andrea Black, a graduate, started Elizabeth Jane clothing, which is doing well in local boutiques and gaining traction nationally too. And the founders of the local shop Zuriick produced some incredible clothing and shoes before going on to their next projects,”says Monson. “And Jordan Halverson just keeps producing cool and unexpected clothing, like in a recent show where it was sequined everything, including luchador masks.” Monson says he hopes Salt Lake continues to be a lively hotbed of creative and cultural activity that nourishes just these kinds of students and artists. “It’s really up to us as a community to keep prioritizing culture,” he says. “As long as the downtown community stays affordable and livable, we’ll have plenty of passionate people fueling a thriving creative environment for years to come.” I

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By giving to panhandlers, your good intentions may actually support violent drug cartels. Be part of the solution by donating time, money or other resources to these organizations.



What’s Old is BEFORE





long with downtown Salt Lake City’s rich cultural and religious history, our urban center is also home to countless historic buildings and storefronts. From the First National Bank Building that housed Salt Lake City’s first public reading room to the Boston and Newhouse Buildings, designed by Samuel Newhouse (who designed the Flatiron Building in New York), downtown is full of architecture that gives the city a memorable and emblematic skyline, complimented by a backdrop of the Wasatch Mountains. Two of downtown’s iconic structures, the 44


Felt and Clift Buildings, have recently undergone renovations that are breathing new life into the historic structure. At both nearly 100 years old, they are among the earliest skyscrapers in downtown and stand as excellent examples of the possibilities of adaptive reuse. The Felt Building Named after Charles B. Felt, the Felt Building (341 S Main) was one of Salt Lake City’s first buildings to be built of steel and concrete in 1909. Charles Felt was the secretary of Salisbury Investment Company led by O.J. Salisbury, a major developer of Salt Lake City at the time.

Even the doors at the Felt Building blend old and new.


New First conceived as a way to shift the business district to the south side of downtown, this five-story building features an ornate terracotta facade. Throughout its life, the Felt Building has featured a diverse portfolio of businesses, from brothels and cigar shops, to law offices. It contains nearly 58,000 square feet of historic office and retail space. The Felt Building is currently home to several creative technology and professional service firms, including DevMountain, one of several software programming schools located downtown. As the technology industry continues to blossom in downtown, a diverse and creative building stock is increasingly valuable to the urban center. Newer firms moving downtown are typically smaller and are looking for a space to incubate, work and explore the ideas. Historic buildings attract

visitors and residents alike, reinvigorating a typically lesser-trafficked area. Renovating old buildings can be a costly undertaking, so Salt Lake City has provided tools for developers and property owners. The renovation of the Felt Building was made possible by a Building Renovation Loan provided by the Redevelopment Agency of Salt Lake. Located on Main Street, right next the Boston Building in the heart of downtown, the fully leased Felt Building serves as a prime example of giving old buildings new life. The Clift Building Francis Clift was a pioneer who traveled to Utah by ox team alongside the Walker Brothers in 1851. After arriving in Utah, he took to mining as a stable source of income, and later became a major financier. Francis Clift died in 1913 and left behind a large estate for his wife, Virture Butcher. She later commissioned the Clift Building (10 W Broadway), which stood on the old site of a popular boarding house in the late 19th century. Today, the eight-story building on the corner of Main Street and 300 South sits as a beautiful example of Second Renaissance Revival Style architecture and was submitted to the National Register of Historic Places in 1982. Anchored on Main Street in downtown, the Clift Building sits across from the Judge Building (8 E Broadway) built in 1909. When first erected, the Clift housed businesses like Shubach Optical Company, Western Union Telegraph and the Kinema Theater. At one time, the theater was the go-to place, and a film in the 1920s titled Shipwrecked Among Cannibals, played at the theater for a “record-breaking� seven days. The Kinema Theater remained in operation until 1968. Although tenants have come and


gone, the Clift Building has remained a stoic icon among downtown buildings. It is one of the largest terracotta-faced buildings in Salt Lake City and has exquisite detail. The upper floors of the building are the most ornate, which feature bay windows and intricate Greek pediments. Although the facade of the building has remained mostly unchanged, the inside of the building has undergone renovations in recent years. To the surprise of the architects and engineers of the project, the Clift Building was not what it appeared to be. After tearing out a false ceiling, workers discovered towering 15 foot ceilings, and even ash and soot residue on the walls and ceiling from a building fire some believe happened when the building was first constructed. Construction in the early 20th century was challenging. Building materials were expensive and often scarce, so when beams were too short, workers and engineers used make-shift materials like railroad ties to complete them. Early in 2017, MGIS signed a 10-year lease on almost 13,000 square feet within the historic Clift. MGIS is an insurance firm based out of the Bay Area. As downtown continues to attract businesses old and new, historic buildings will be an integral part of that success. Renovations of historic buildings have become commonplace in Salt Lake City as old buildings provide new opportunity for unique office space for tech firms, law offices and numerous other businesses. This makes the rich historical context of these buildings a coveted asset to many. Although new buildings like 111 and 222 Main offer exceptional office space with a new urban flare, the historic significance and rustic charm of these old buildings is not to be overlooked. I DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017



DESIGNING DOWNTOWN Architecture firms set up shop downtown 46



hen architect Ross Wentworth joined Naylor Wentworth Lund Architects (NWL) in 1991, he had one stipulation—that the firm relocate to downtown Salt Lake City. A year later, Wentworth, who is now the vice president of NWL, got what he wanted. Since 1992, his firm has called downtown home. NWL is one of the many architecture firms with a longestablished presence downtown. For Wentworth and other downtown architects, being downtown increases a firm’s credibility and local understanding of the area. Many of downtown’s architecture firms have also been pioneers in emerging neighborhoods and districts. “Moving downtown felt like we were becoming a more serious firm,” said Wentworth. “It puts your stake in the ground saying, ‘We’re here for good.’” In 1998, the firm moved into a two-story office building across the street from Pioneer Park. At that time, downtown’s westside was still transitioning with rail yards that cut off much of the area from the rest of the urban center. “When we moved to the Pioneer Park area, it felt like we were on the outskirts of downtown,” said NWL President Christopher Lund. Like the neighborhood they worked in, the firm continued to expand. This April, NWL relocated its 45 employees to a new office, an adaptive-reuse of a historic warehouse on the western boundary of downtown just south of 400 South on 700 West. “Being downtown enhanced the quality of life for our employees, it was hard moving across the viaduct,” said Lund. “But finding a building with these bones was a primary reason for moving. This space allows for more growth.” There are several physical barriers to the block that NWL’s new office occupies. The area can only be accessed one direction each way from the 400 South viaduct. A large rail yard separates the offices from the rest of downtown. Despite being a block from the Intermodal Hub, employees utilizing transit must use the viaduct to reach the offices on the other side. Despite feeling cut off from downtown, Lund sees potential in his firm’s new location. Across the street from their new headquarters is the headquarters of FFKR Architects. FFKR is partnering with a local developer to convert an adjacent warehouse into an artist workspace and additional office space. “We’ve always been on the outskirts of the core,” said Roger Jackson, president of FFKR Architects. FFKR has been downtown since the firm opened in 1976. They have been in their current offices near 700 West since 2002. Like NWL, the firm occupies a former warehouse that was converted into office space. “I like being in old buildings,” said Jackson. Both Jackson and Lund cite the open floor plans, and the flexibility of warehouse space as why former warehouses convert easily into office space. Both NWL and FFKR’s offices DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017


utilize an open floor plan design with employees working within ear and eye shot of each other. Additionally, the large floor plans allow for studio workshop space and room for future expansion. With two architecture firms and the future addition of the artist workspace, Wentworth sees the area as an emerging design district. However, both Wentworth and Jackson agree that the area needs infrastructure improvements to improve its connectivity to the rest of downtown. Both firms encourage employees to bike to and from work or the Intermodal Hub. Lund is even considering providing bikes for employees to get downtown. FFKR provides its 125 employees two morning and afternoon shuttle trips between the hub and their office. The headquarters of FFKR and NWL is one of several creative clusters downtown. Several firms are also headquartered on 200 South between 300 and 400 West. Since 1997, GSBS Architects have worked out of the historic Henderson Block building at the corner of 200 South and 400 West. The firm was established in 1978 and has been located downtown since its inception. “From the beginning, this firm wanted to be downtown,” said Jesse Allen. “We wanted to do good work in Utah and that meant being in the capital city downtown.” GSBS started in the basement of the Walker Center before relocating to the Henderson Block building. As with the headquarters of FFKR and NWL, GSBS’ building is 48


an adaptive reuse. The Henderson Block building was built in 1898 and was originally used as a grocery distribution center. The building is part of the historic Walter Wares Warehouses, which also includes the the 110-year-old Crane Building, on the other side of the block at the corner of 200 South and 300 West. Like the Henderson Building, the Crane Building is also home to architecture firms. Blalock and Partners as well as VODA Landscape + Planning operate out of the Crane. Like NWL, GSBS moved to downtown’s western edge before major development began to pick up in the neighborhood. Allen suggested that architects are drawn to historic buildings and transitioning neighborhoods because of the opportunity to create something new while preserving history. “Part of the downtown allure is the juxtaposition of the old and new,” said Allen. For many architects, being downtown provides opportunities to connect with other professionals. “Being downtown you see what is happening,” said Kevin Blalock, a principal with Blalock and Partners. “Getting out and walking to a cafe reinforces what you are doing. We’ll always be downtown; it’s part of our culture. This is where we work and play.” Blalock and his firm have been downtown since the firm started in 2004. After 10 years next to Nostalgia Cafe on 100 South, the firm relocated to the Crane Building. Being downtown allows for the architects to be aware of the city’s streetscape. The architects interviewed mentioned walking during their lunch breaks to take in and observe the downtown experience. They argue that daily interaction with the city allows them to design local projects with a local perspective. All four firms have been involved in prominent downtown or downtown adjacent projects. GSBS helped redesign Regent Street next to the George and Dolores Eccles Theater. FFKR designed Abravanel Hall. NWL designed the new downtown Federal Courthouse. And Blalock and Partners designed the Marmalade Library Branch in the Marmalade District just north of downtown. “The work we’ve done on Regent Street has helped create a new identity for downtown streetscapes. It is a precedent for what other mid-block streets could be,” said Allen. With the rapid rate of growth underway downtown, Allen expects that competition with national architecture firms will increase, land will become more expensive and developers will opt for taller buildings to offset rising land and construction costs. Allen also noted that in the same way that downtown firms are given more credibility for being centrally located, developers are prone to see out-of-state firms as more prestigious. “If you allow a local firm the same privileges, you’ll get a better result as they are familiar with the area,” said Allen. Going with local architects also means that more money stays local. “We live here and we know this place. We know the people here,” said Jackson. “We are a locally-owned business. Doing the work here means more money stays here.” I























New Residential Options

DYNAMIC URBAN LIVING A dozen new residential projects add to a growing sumber of residential opportunities


owntown Salt Lake’s residential population is growing at an unprecedented rate. In a 2016 downtown housing report, James Wood, an Ivory-Boyer senior fellow at the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute, asserted that more residential units will be in development downtown in the next 10 years than were developed in the previous 100. A strong economy combined with a growing demand for urban living is creating a residential boom throughout the city, with an estimated 3,700 multifamily units under construction and another 2,800 units expected to start construction in the next two years. Additionally, the city added almost 2,000 multifamily units last year. 50


Wood estimates that in 2010 there were 5,200 housing units in the greater downtown area (I-15 to 700 East and North Temple to 400 South), and that by 2020 the number of housing units will double to 10,000 units and 20,000 new residents. The Downtown Alliance considers the official downtown district to be the area bound by 400 South to North Temple and 700 West to 300 East. As the economic and cultural center, downtown Salt Lake is driving most of the city’s residential growth. Of the 2,000 units completed in the past year, 1,442, or 72 percent, were downtown. Despite only accounting for around 5 percent of Salt Lake City’s total population, downtown accounts for 1,736, or 47 percent of the units under construction; but 1,500 of

the 2,800 units, or 54 percent, that have been announced have yet to break ground. In all, there 12 downtown residential developments under construction or completed in the past year. The 12 developments average about 237 units per development. 4th West Apartments At 497 units, the 4th West Apartments is the largest residential building by unit count ever built in Salt Lake City. The five-story, mixed-use project by Salt Development officially opened August 2017, replacing a large vacant surface parking lot. The developers view 4th West as an urban resort. The luxury units include a mix of studio, one

and two- bedroom apartments. Amenities include ground-floor commercial space and a roof deck pool, lounge areas and fitness center that overlook downtown Salt Lake and the Wasatch Mountains. The project, on the 200 North block of 400 West is directly adjacent to the North Temple TRAX and FrontRunner stations. Hardware District Also by Salt Development, the Hardware District consists of two residential buildings with a combined 409 units. Like 4th West, the buildings, referred to as Hardware East and Hardware West, replace a surface parking lot. Both buildings will be seven stories with 144 and 265 units respectively. The units will

be a mix of studio, one and two-bedroom apartments, and 42 brownstone townhomes, the majority of which will have three bedrooms. The under-construction project is directly south of 400 West and is expected to be completed next year. Alta Gateway Station The four-story Alta Gateway Station, by Wood Partners, takes up a city block. The project is right behind The Gateway on the 100 South block of 500 West, and includes nearly 280 residential units. The project is in the first of two phases. The second phase is planned for the northwest corner of the block at the intersection of 100 South and 600 West. DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017


PEG Development, that includes the apartments and a hotel on the 200 West block of 200 South. The Milagro will be seven stories with 183 market-rate units. The Milagro will have ground-floor retail along 200 South and will share a pedestrian plaza with an adjacent hotel that will be under the AC Marriott brand. Both buildings are under construction and will be completed next year. Liberty Crest Most of the residential activity downtown has been clustered on the district’s westside, but on the eastern edge of downtown is the Liberty Crest Apartments, a sevenstory residential development by Cowboy Partners. The project, on the 100 South block of 200 East, was completed this summer and includes 177 residential units. Liberty Crest is the sole residential building on a block that is a mix of office buildings and one of Salt Lake’s busiest nightlife corridors, home to Beer Bar, Bar-X and Johnny’s on Second.

600 Lofts While the majority of downtown residential development underway has been focused on market-rate and luxury apartments, the 600 Lofts on the 600 south block of State Street provide needed workforce housing downtown. The six-story project, by the Wasatch Group, includes 274 units with a mix of studio, one and twobedroom apartments. The units are income-restricted for residents earning around 60 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI). Skyhouse An active urban node is emerging north of The Gateway on North Temple. In addition to the Hardware District and the 4th West Apartments, is the Skyhouse Apartments. The six-story project, on the 300 West block of North Temple, is less than a block from the aforementioned developments and will add 240 marketrate units to the neighborhood. The under-construction development replaces a motel and fast-food restaurant. Block 44 On the outer edge of downtown, Block 44 will bring density to one of the downtown’s most important corridors—400 South. The under-construction project on the 300 East block of 400 South will add 214 residential units and takes up almost an entire city block. The sevenstory project, by Wright Development Group, includes a mix of studio, one and two-bedroom apartments. The Milagro The Milagro Apartments is part of a larger project by 52


Downtown 360 On the 300 South block of 400 West is the Downtown 360 Apartments by Garbett Homes. The five-story building includes 151 residential units and is across the street from Pioneer Park, the home of the Downtown Alliance’s weekly Farmers Market and the Twilight Summer Concert Series. The 360 Apartments opened to residents earlier this year and is within two blocks of two TRAX stations. The Morton Liberty Crest will soon have a neighbor with the Morton Apartments, an eight-story mixed-use residential building under construction on the 200 South block of 200 East. The project will include ground-floor retail on 200 East and 137 residential units. The Morton is by Seattle-based developer Timberlane Partners. Pierpont Apartments Just west of the Milagro Apartments is the Pierpont Apartments, an eight-story residential development by Gardiner Properties. The Pierpont Apartments, on the 300 West block of Pierpont Avenue, includes 87 units and is less than a block from Pioneer Park. Construction started this summer on the project that will bring more residents to one of Salt Lake’s most eclectic corridors, Pierpont Avenue. Paragon Station Developer Clearwater Homes recently converted a vacant office building on the 300 West block of 200 South into Paragon Station, a luxury residential development. The four-story building includes 38 residential units. Paragon Station is part of an emerging residential and retail corner of downtown, being less than one block from the Milagro and Pierpont Apartments. I






Arena Risin Utah Jazz and downtown benefit from $125 million upgrade 54



here’s a brand new arena in downtown Salt Lake City. Actually, it’s not “new” new, but the sixmonth, $125 million renovation of Vivint Smart Home Arena feels like new, revitalizing the building from top to bottom for the benefit of all its guests. “A tremendous transformation of the arena has resulted in a fan-focused sports and entertainment venue that will delight our guests,” said Steve Starks, president of Larry H. Miller Sports & Entertainment. “The reimagined arena features upgrades on all six levels, from energy-generating solar panels on the roof to revamped locker rooms on the ground floor. In between, fans will experience enhanced amenities from food offerings to rebooted technology.”



The makeover comes more than 25 years after the original opening of the Delta Center as the home of the Utah Jazz. With the NBA seeking a larger venue than the Salt Palace for the team, it was built faster than any other arena at the time of its construction— in 15 months and 24 days. The decision to give new life to the building, instead of relocating to the suburbs or elsewhere, only reaffirmed the Miller family’s commitment to downtown and to Utah. “We have an opportunity to do something very special that will last for another 25 to 30 years,” said LHM Group of Companies Chairman Gail Miller at the announcement of the renovation, whose costs were privately financed by the Legacy Trust. “This should make no question in people’s minds that we’re committed to being here. We’re committed to getting a championship. We’re here for the long haul, and I hope fans will support us in that, because without them we really can’t.” “Vivint Smart Home arena is so much more than just a building,” said Jason Mathis, executive director of the Downtown Alliance. “It is an anchor for an entire neighborhood’s identity and revitalization efforts.” At the beginning of 2017, the Miller family announced that ownership of both the Jazz and Vivint Smart Home Arena were being transferred to a Legacy Trust that would keep them in Utah in perpetuity. Profits generated by the franchise and facility are reinvested to keep the arena as a vibrant community 56


gathering place for sports, concerts and shows, and the team as a competitive, model small-market organization. “A significant milestone was reached when the arena turned 25 years old, and the Miller family responded with a plan that secures the future of the Jazz in Utah,” Starks said. “Their generosity, love of Utah and commitment to “WE HAVE AN enriching the lives of others inspired OPPORTUNITY TO this gift and set a DO SOMETHING course for the next VERY SPECIAL THAT generation.” WILL LAST FOR While no events were held at Vivint ANOTHER 25 TO 30 Smart Home Arena YEARS. THIS SHOULD last summer, the MAKE NO QUESTION facility was still IN PEOPLE’S MINDS abuzz each day with 400-500 construction THAT WE’RE workers on double COMMITTED TO shifts, demolishing BEING HERE. concrete walls, WE’RE COMMITTED removing all the green plastic chairs TO GETTING A and building new CHAMPIONSHIP. dining, club and social WE’RE HERE FOR spaces. Salt Lake THE LONG HAUL, City-based Okland Construction AND I HOPE FANS served as the WILL SUPPORT US general contractor IN THAT, BECAUSE for the project with WITHOUT THEM WE valuable work from subcontractors. SCI REALLY CAN’T.” Architects was the —GAIL MILLER lead architectural firm with more than 100 sports-related projects on their roster. ICON Venue Group provided project management support. “The investment made by the Miller family means that the Jazz will stay downtown for decades, but it goes beyond that,” said Lane Beattie, president of the Salt Lake Chamber. “We’ve already seen others step up to invest tens of millions of dollars in surrounding blocks. Larry’s grand vision is being fulfilled in ways he could probably not have imagined decades ago.” The construction timeline presented a challenge as the Jazz advanced to the second round of the NBA Playoffs and (gladly) extended their season an extra month. The first scheduled event in the renovated Vivint Smart Home Arena is the Tim McGraw and Faith Hill concert, followed by a full array of Jazz games, upcoming shows from Katy Perry, Billy Joel, Lady Gaga and Foo Fighters, as well as other special events from the Harlem Globetrotters to Disney on Ice.

The arena hosts more than 100 events annually with 1.8 million guests. With the renovation, those visitors are finding a tremendous amount of open, connected spaces with unique things to see, experience and enjoy on every level and even outside. The plaza greets people with a supersized J-note as the centerpiece. A new 12,000-square foot atrium has also been added with large video screens atop the foyer for outdoor watch parties for rabid Jazz fans who couldn’t make it into what the team expects to be many sell-out games in coming years. Once inside, the lobby is a natural gathering spot with the box office, Utah Jazz Team 58


Store full of unique arena-only merchandise and memorabilia, and easy access to the super club on level two and the suites on level four. Concourse walls have been removed for the creation of a new porch that gives fans a full view of the lower bowl—like standing behind home plate at a baseball game, but better— because this is Utah Jazz basketball! The first look inside the arena reveals an ocean of blue, as the iconic green plastic chairs were replaced by fully-cushioned seats in both the lower and upper bowls. Designed for style and comfort, the new seats are Jazz navy blue with a blue/black nylon-weaved fabric. The fixed seating areas feature chairs

with armrests and cup holders. Fans are able to taste another change. A multitude of food selections—more than 30 restaurants and vendors—have created destination dining with a lineup of new culinary choices. Newcomers to the menu of arena restaurants are R&R Barbecue, JDawgs, Hire’s Big H, Cubby’s, El Chubasco Mexican Grill, Maxwell’s and Canyon Sausage. Popular returnees are CupBop Korean Barbecue, Papa John’s Pizza, Zao Asian Café, Chick-fil-A, Dippin’ Dots, Bon Bon Gelato, Iceberg and Farr Better Ice Cream. “We are so excited. It’s incredible to be one of the select restaurants at the arena,” said

Profits generated by the franchise and facility are reinvested to keep the arena as a vibrant community gathering place for sports, concerts and shows, and the team as a competitive, model small-market organization

Rod Livingston, owner and pit master of R&R BBQ. “It doesn’t get any better than this for our brand to be affiliated with the Jazz and our downtown arena.” Working kitchens in the dining areas showcase the preparation of fresh food. The four corners of the main concourse at Vivint Smart Home Arena feature specialty menus with barbecue from R&R, handtossed pizzas from Maxwell’s, Mexican food from El Chubasco, and gourmet hamburgers and signature beef sandwiches from Cubby’s. Levy, one of America’s premier sports and entertainment hospitality partners, has formed a joint venture with the arena to manage food and beverage experiences, and introduced Salted Honey Hospitality as its signature brand of service.

“Larry H. Miller Sports & Entertainment at its core culture is a hospitality company with care and concern for arena guests and the community as a whole,” said John Sergi, food and beverage hospitality design consultant for the arena. “And as food is one of the most tangible, sensory and personal expressions of hospitality, it made complete sense that food was a central element of the renovation. “Driving the hospitality design is the fact that the Salt Lake City area has a vibrant, emerging and entrepreneurial food scene. We captured this local food energy in the design of the arena by engaging the region’s best-in-class chefs and restaurateurs. We look forward to arena guests arriving early and planning to eat something new and wonderful at every event.” Another substantial upgrade for the arena is the formation of a super club with gathering space for 1,700 guests. Located on level two behind the lower bowl seats, the club wraps around nearly two-thirds of the arena. The club experience at a Jazz game is unlike any other entertainment option in Utah. The open floor layout has comfortable social spaces for a quick bite to eat or a full-service meal from an array of live cooking stations and new restaurant offerings. The club is open throughout Jazz games with eight portal entrances along with a members-only main entry from the arena lobby. With its top-to-bottom approach for improvements and desire to implement sustainable practices, the renovation started on the roof with the installation of 2,700 Vivint Solar panels, covering 80,000 square feet and producing the energy equivalency worth two seasons of Jazz home games. The Jazz players also have a new home away from home with the remodeling of the locker room complex and the addition of weight rooms, training rooms and family areas on level one. Technology has also been deployed to enhance the guest experience through a new mobile app, high-speed public Wi-Fi, cloud-based technology and predictive analytics. More than 400 televisions are located throughout the arena, providing information, directions and a constant eye on what’s happening on the stage or court. “Vivint Smart Home Arena is the story of an arena rising to meet the expectations of its guests as a top destination for sports and entertainment events,” said Vivint Smart Home Arena President Jim Olson. “The arena renovation is packed with amenities to create a world-class experience for our fans. There is a new energy around the building, and the improvements will be an eye-opener for people who have attended events in the past.” Just like it was a new arena. I DOWNTOWN THE MAGAZINE: FALL/WINTER 2017



45 17 Delicious Days.

$5 or $10 Two-Item Lunches $15, $25 & $35 Three-Course Dinners


Downtown. 45+ restaurants. Two weeks. Sept 15 - Oct 1.


f you like to eat out, Dine O’ Round is a Christmas in September for foodies. Over 50 downtown restaurants offer diners two-item lunches for either $5 or $10, or three-course dinners for $15, $25 or $35. There are no coupons to clip or internet specials; all you have to do is ask any participating restaurant for the Dine O’ Round menu. In fact, most restaurants bring it along with the regular menu. Running from September 15 through October 1, Dine O’ Round encompasses three weekends, as well as the two full weeks in-between. Options range from gourmet— think Current, Finca, Copper Onion, Pallet,

or even the new White Horse Kitchen— to casual options. Veterans use Dine O’ Round as a way to try out new restaurants, as well as the opportunity to revisit an old favorite. Newcomers this year include the aforementioned White Horse, plus Fat Jack's Burger Emporium, Rib and Chop House, Lake Effect, Carnegie’s and HSL. For many, a close favorite behind actually eating at restaurants is memorializing the restaurant's experience by taking photos of said meals. We’re on board with this! In fact, photos tagged #dineoround on instagram are entered to win our “Dinner For A Year” contest.

Several restaurants offer the same Dine O’ Round meal each day, while others, such as Squatters, offers up a new dish each day. The gameplan is simple: follow all the restaurants on social media to see daily Dine O’ Round specials, and visit dineoround.com several times a week and download the sample menus. Want to hit them all? We’ve done the math: it would require eating out more than twice a day during the 17 day run. Good luck! Grab a fork and dig in! See all participating restruants online at dineoround.com





What’s on the Menu?

owntown’s dining scene is in the midst of a culinary renaissance. Imaginative chefs have redefined modern cuisine, while entrepreneur owners have pushed downtown Salt Lake City into the national spotlight as one of America’s great foodie cities with chic and fresh spaces—as unique as the food they serve. Fresh sushi to classic Italian and vegan fare to unique gastropub options

round out a landscape, which features tastes from all points on the globe. Downtown is rising, and the food has clearly reached new heights.

Blue Iguana Featuring authentic flavors from deep in the heart of Old Mexico, Chef Manuel Castillo takes great pride in the constant refinement of generations of Aztec family recipes. Whether you indulge yourself in the tender Chile Verde, mouth-watering Enchilada Suizas, or one of the dozen signature “Holy Molés”, close your eyes and you’ll surely feel transported to the Zona Romantica of Puerto Vallarta! Enjoy an award-winning “Iguanarita”, an ice cold beer, or a glass of proprietary Blue Iguana wine with your meal. Please visit Blue Iguana, a Best of State winner and Utah Institution since 1997, Downtown SLC located directly across from the Salt Palace Convention Center, or in Park City at the top of old Main Street, inside the Treasure Mountain Inn. 165 S West Temple | (801) 533-8900 | blueiguanarestaurant.net

Bourbon House Bourbon House, Craft Kitchen and Cocktails, is a modern speakeasy celebrating the classic Manhattan, showcasing nine different varieties, along with a menu of cocktails featuring a multitude of spirits. Have you ever had an adult-fried bologna sandwich? The Craft Kitchen side of Bourbon House will leave you wishing you were a kid again. Sports fan? Bourbon House offers game day food specials and every sports channel to showcase your game. Apart from games, they host local DJs every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, including live Jazz every Tuesday evening. 19 E 200 South | (801) 746-1005 | bourbonhouseslc.com

Cannella’s Cannella’s Restaurant & Lounge is entering its 40th year, which makes it one of downtown SLC’s oldest family-owned restaurants and with good reason. Deliciously simple southern Italian cuisine with solid Americana roots planted in the community , there is truly something for everyone. With the addition of the bar in 2007, the Lounge is offering a well-rounded wine list, delicious craft cocktails and one of the most unique and welcoming atmospheres in the city.

204 E 500 South | (801) 355-8518 | cannellas.com

Carnegie’s Enjoy yourself at Carnegie’s Public House, where we provide customers with inspired cocktails and worldwide cooking influences. The classic Americana menu comes together in an authentic Italian wood-fired oven, with a spark of creativity and passion provided by innovative chefs. Carnegie’s Public House is located inside the historic Peery Hotel in the heart of downtown Salt Lake City. Top-notch service staff will transform your dining experience into one of the best dining excursions the city has to offer. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week, and also offers full-service catering with customized menus to fit your needs. 110 W Broadway | (801) 521-4300 | peeryhotel.com/carnegies-public-house



Catering should always be this good. Contact us today to find out how to bring your next event to Eccles Theater cuisineunlimited.com/ecclestheater


Cedars of Lebanon As the first family-owned Mediterranean restaurant in Salt Lake City, celebrating the 35th year, Cedars of Lebanon has always had an unwavering desire to introduce their best recipes. From a melting pot of Lebanese, Moroccan, Armenian and Greek cuisine, dietician and head chef of more than 30 years promises the healthiest ingredients and most exotic flavors made from scratch. With a belly-dancing show entertaining on weekends and the Moroccaninspired Casbah Room, adorned with plush couches, it’s sure to make for an exceptional evening out. Huka service also offered.

152 E 200 South | (801) 364-4096 | cedarsoflebanonrestaurant.com

Cucina Toscana Cucina Toscana has been Salt Lake’s favorite Italian restaurant for more than 10 years. Toscana’s authentic Northern Italian menu includes housemade pastas, decadent sauces and a wide selection of entrees that are paired perfectly with wines from the region. Toscana features three beautiful, private rooms that can be reserved for parties, meetings or special events. Whether you are planning for two or one hundred people, Toscana’s ambience, delicious food and impeccable service ensures a successful evening. Located at the corner of 300 South and 300 West in Salt Lake City with the main entrance on 300 West. Parking available on the north side of the building. 282 S 300 West | (801) 328-3463 | toscanaslc.com

Current Fish and Oyster Diners will enjoy the best seafood dishes from regional American cuisine, with choices of East and West Coast oysters and some flavors new to Utah for a memorable and contemporary dining experience in an historic atmosphere. The emphasis on vibrant beverage offerings is equal to the focus on the cuisine. The professional and classic service style brings some innovative surprises to the table. Located on the newly redeveloped 300 South corridor, Current adds excitement to the expansion of the downtown Salt Lake City core.

279 E 300 South | (801) 326-FISH (3474) | currentfishandoyster.com

CYTYBYRD CYTYBYRD Café prides itself on made-from-scratch classics and innovative specials that highlight fresh local ingredients. Whether it’s breakfast served all day, the Byrd’s specially formulated veggie burger, or a farmers market Asian salad or fried quail special, the experience will keep you coming back. Check out CYTYBYRD for fantastic Dine O’Round specials, and come back for the amazing food and atmosphere where no one is a stranger. Located in the historic City and County Building in downtown Salt Lake. Open throughout construction.

450 S 200 East | (801) 535-6102 | cytybyrd.com



First Floor of Historic City and County Building | 450 South 200 East | 801.535.6102

During Dine O’Round try any two of our entrées, an entrée with salad or soup, an entrée and dessert OR Soup, Salad and Dessert for 10 Bucks Breakfast All Day Gluten Free, Vegan & Vegetarian Options Real Fruit Smoothies & Full Speciality Coffee Menu Come try our ‘Made From Scratch’ menu classics and Innovative Daily Specials that highlight fresh local ingredients. Whether its Our House Made Lentil-Quinoa Veggie Patty, Farmers Market Asian Salad or Fried Quail Special we believe Delicious and Healthy is for everybody.


Gourmandise Gourmandise has served European pastries and desserts in the Salt Lake Valley for more than two decades. Morning begins with fresh breads, croissants and made-to-order breakfast plates. Gourmandise offers bistro-style lunch and dinner with evening small plates, entrees with beer and wine pairings. Complementing the cafe is an expanse of 30 feet of display cases, filled with scratch-made Old World favorites, delighting guests throughout the day. Walking into Gourmandise feels like a visit to a bustling, lively European Cafe, surprisingly located downtown.

250 S 300 East | (801) 328-3330 | gourmandisethebakery.com

Green Pig The Green Pig Pub is a local downtown pub with fresh, housemade food in a casual and relaxing environment. Owner Bridget Gordon brings her longtime experience in the bar industry to the neighborhood look and feel of The Green Pig Pub. Her recent stint of 11+ years at Salt Lake’s famous Port O’Call ensures that The Green Pig Pub will be a lively, thriving place to eat, drink, and meet up with friends old and new. Green Pig hosts different entertainment nightly.

31 E 400 South | (801) 532-7441 | thegreenpigpub.com

Martine Recently renovated, Martine offers a welcoming atmosphere to enjoy locally sourced, handcrafted cuisine. A standout lunch spot by day and classic date-night choice by night with flavorful tapas and wine options. Located adjacent to the new Eccles Theatre in downtown Salt Lake.

22 E 100 South #200 | (801) 363-9328 | www.martinecafe.com

Rib & Chop House The Rib & Chop House was founded in 2001. From humble beginnings, numerous Rib & Chop House restaurants have opened across the U.S., and this is the second in Utah. Their ability to grow has come through a commitment to “Rocky Mountain Hospitality,” a concept which incorporates a casual attitude with a high-level commitment to loyalty, safety, service and quality food. Come enjoy Certified Angus Beef, the freshest seafood, and award winning baby back ribs! There is something for everyone. A full bar, draft beer, wines by the glass and bottle are available!

140 S 300 West | (406) 551-4982 | ribandchophouse.com




Squatters Salt Lake’s original brew pub has been brewing legendary beers for more than 25 years. Squatters’ mouth-watering menu features daily specials and traditional pub favorites, such as fish and chips, buffalo wings and an array of delicious burgers—paired with award-winning beer, a welcoming atmosphere and hospitable service. Squatters purchasing philosophy is to procure organic, locally-produced and environmentally-friendly products, supporting local companies whenever possible. Serving lunch, dinner and weekend brunch, Squatters also features an urban garden patio and spectacular city views, as well private event space on three different floors that can accommodate groups from 20 - 300. Squatters. Good For What Ales You. 147 W Broadway | (801) 363-2739 | squatters.com

Stanza Italian Bistro and Wine Bar Stanza Italian Bistro & Wine Bar’s design is dramatic and visually stunning. The professional culinary, service and beverage teams create an amazing dining experience with chef-driven Italian cuisine by Jonathan LeBlanc. He offers great, simple, Italian food with an innovative twist. The entire restaurant is also a wine bar and boasts an exciting beverage program that pairs perfectly. All elements blend seamlessly to create a modern, cutting-edge dining experience.

454 E 300 South | (801) 746-4441 | stanzaslc.com

Taco Taco From the moment it opened, Taco Taco has been converting taco lovers—one taco at a time! Chef Beto brings his authentic & delicious tacos, fresh salsa bar and some of the biggest burritos and quesadillas this side of East LA! Bringing mas flavor to the SLC, TT is small, fierce and packs a luchador punch that will take you to your knees with gratitude. Favorites are Al pastor, zuchhini blossom and asada tacos, chicken chile verde burritos, carne asada quesadillas, and the quacamole and fresh salsa bar give you everything you need to make the perfect taco.

208 E 500 South | (801) 428-2704 | tacotacoslc.com

Texas De Brazil Texas de Brazil is a Brazilian steakhouse that embraces a time-honored tradition of churrasco-style cooking, which was adopted from the gauchos, or Brazilian cowboys of Southern Brazil. Renowned for its genuine rodizio-style dining, guests are able to sample from endless servings of various cuts of meat, including lamb chops, leg of lamb, picanha, filet mignon, chicken breasts wrapped in bacon, Brazilian sausages and more. Additionally, Texas de Brazil boasts an extravagant gourmet salad area containing more than 50 fresh items, such as grilled vegetables, imported cheeses, charcuterie, smoked salmon, creamy lobster bisque and many more mouthwatering variations of salads and traditional Brazilian sides. Decadent desserts, refreshing Brazilian cocktails and an award-winning wine list are also available to further enhance the dining experience. 50 S Main #168 | (385) 232-8070 | texasdebrazil.com




Tin Angel Tin Angel is a locally-owned, locally-driven art and dining experience in the heart of downtown Salt Lake’s Historic Pioneer Park District. The rituals of dining are lovingly balanced with a practiced, irreverent and creative culinary palate directed by Chef/ Owner Jerry Liedtke. Nestled into a pioneer era home with large patio facing Pioneer Park, Tin Angel has become a unique and much loved addition to the downtown Salt Lake dining scene. Reservations are always welcome and sometimes necessary.

365 W 400 South | (801) 328-4155 | thetinangel.com

Whiskey Street During the late 1800’s, Salt Lake City was so inundated with people of ill-repute (prospectors, soldiers and ladies of the night), the blocks between 200 South and 400 South were known as Whiskey Street; the moniker was given by none other than Brigham Young himself. Whiskey Street, Cocktails and Dining, features over 300 whiskeys, 200 beers and the largest collection of spirits in Salt Lake City. As opposed to your typical “bar food,” you will dine on entrees showcasing fresh, local products, house-made marinades, and hand-carved meats.

323 S Main | (801) 433-1371 | whiskeystreet.com

White Horse In 1843, Joseph Smith, Jr., founder of the Latter-day Saints, was alleged to have made a prediction. One day, the Saints would become a “great and mighty people” and “the White Horse of peace and safety,” in an allusion to the White Horse described in the Book of Revelation. Further, the U.S. Constitution would “hang by a thread,” but would be “saved by the efforts of the White Horse.” White Horse, a modern American Brasserie, serves everything from bar snacks to fresh oysters, and sandwiches to steaks. Featuring Utah’s largest apertif and digestif selection, 30 ciders from around the world, and a wall of spirits towering to the sky, will leave visitors with something to come back for. 325 S Main | (801) 363-0137 | facebook.com/whitehorseslc

Zest Dining out can be difficult when trying to eat healthy. Through delicious food and beverage, zest promotes a fresh lifestyle. The kitchen focuses on using organic and local ingredients while offering a diverse vegan and paleo-oriented menu. At the bar, refreshing cocktails are complimented by fantastic juices and funky modern styles. Lunch is a refreshing experience, and at night, dinner’s ambience keeps a relaxing pace. Zest has created a compassionate environment for five years and will continue to influence the dining scene in Salt Lake City with positivity and energy. All persons dining in the restaurant must be 21+. 275 S 200 West | (801) 433-0589 | zestslc.com




INTRODUCTION SHORT TERM OBJECTIVES (1-3 YEARS) Downtown Salt Lake City is the capital city of Utah, headquarters of a global religion and the historic center of our state. Thanks to significant public and private investments over the past decade, downtown is now Utah’s center for innovation and prosperity. two dynamic entertainment centers and countless independent restaurants and retailers, a burgeoning residential community, a professional sports franchise and one of the nation’s best transportation networks. Downtown Rising has been a catalyst for the past decade’s growth. The guiding vision was launched by the Salt Lake Chamber in partnership with the Downtown Alliance in 2006, and later unveiled to the community in 2007. Based on the Second Century Plan from the 1960’s, the vision continues to capture the hopes and aspirations for the urban center of Utah’s capital city with public and private sector participation in a consensus-based approach. Moving forward, Downtown Rising will continue to advocate for interest and investment in Salt Lake City’s urban center.

Public Market

Convention Center Hotel

Building on the success of the summer Downtown Farmers Market, a public market in the Rio Grande neighborhood will provide year-round vending opportunities and continue to bolster rapid transit oriented development of downtown’s depot district. The public market will act as an important public space within the community, bringing residents and businesses together while promoting small and local business in a celebration of Utah’s agricultural roots and food production heritage.

Significant strides have been made towards building a convention center hotel adjacent to the Calvin Rampton Salt Palace Convention Center. The size and complexity of this project will require State, County and City participation with a private developer to build a facility that meets market requirements. In 2013, the Utah State Legislature approved a post-performance tax incentive to entice development and currently Salt Lake County and private developer DDRM are in negotiations to construct the project.

Tech Anchor Campus Building on the growing technology ecosystem in downtown, Downtown Rising will advocate for the development of a “tech campus” that fosters innovation with local universities, colleges and technology companies. This campus will provide the burgeoning technology sector with more reasons to locate and grow their business in downtown.

Sports & Entertainment District Downtown has an unprecedented opportunity to capitalize on renewed investments at the Vivint Smart Home Arena and The Gateway. Downtown Rising will advocate to enhance the district to expand regional audiences, increased spending on retail, food and beverages, greater use of parking and transportation systems, increases in sales tax revenue and more.

Cultural Core Downtown’s arts and cultural organizations represent a unique resource for economic growth. Downtown Rising will advocate for innovative placemaking and public art projects and other programs that expand public exposure to art, particularly those that showcase local artists.

Transportation Investment Downtown’s regional transportation infrastructure ensures a variety of options including auto, free public transit on TRAX, buses and enhanced bicycle infrastructure like the GREENbike bike share program. Several additional planned transportation projects will enhance downtown as a regional multi-modal hub. These include: Downtown Circulator: A downtown bus circulator will break down arbitrary boundaries and create a more cohesive downtown district. TRAX extension to the new SLC airport: The existing Airport TRAX line needs additional investment to reach the new hub and ensure 21st century connectivity into downtown. Downtown Streetcar: In 2013, Envision Utah, Salt Lake City and the Utah Transit Authority began an alternatives analysis to catalogue potential routes stretching from downtown to the University of Utah. Downtown Rising supports a streetcar system that links the urban center with University neighborhoods, to enhance transit-oriented development.


Grand Boulevards: The Grand Boulevards act as main arteries in and out of Utah’s capital city, serving thousands of drivers every day. 400 South, 500 South and 600 South need continued attention along with public and private investment to create a more dignified, green and monumental front door for our urban center.


Opportunity for the Journey


ince I can remember, I’ve always been highly impacted by the American way. Being born and raised in Delicias, Chihuahua, Mexico, the desire to come to America grew as I got older. I was brought up in a healthy environment by business-savvy parents who gave me the building blocks to entrepreneurship. In 1985, I finally had the courage to leave my life behind to start a new journey in America. As destiny has it, for the first part of my trip, I ended up deep in the sheep herding and livestock country of Rawlins, Wyo. I wound up with a job as a sheep herder, which gave me the opportunity to be alone with my thoughts and helped fuel the passion for my future. Since learning English was one of my main goals in this journey, I went to the valley to look for ESL classes, but was disappointed to find that they weren’t common in that area at that time. Later that summer, an opening presented itself to make my next move and I took it, landing in downtown Salt Lake City. At this point, I still had very little money, I didn’t speak English, I didn’t have a job and I had no place to stay. With a sleeping bag and couple of changes of clothes, I found myself at the Rescue Mission and soon after the men’s shelter. Every morning I would wake up at 4:30 a.m. to go to a temporary job placement agency and in doing so, I soon discovered the countless opportunities right here in Salt Lake. Shortly after, I enrolled in an ESL program that is now known as the Horizonte Instruction and Training Center. There, I learned English with other immigrants and refugees. One day after a long days’ work and being homesick, I wanted to make myself a bean and cheese burrito, so off to the store I went for a can of beans. After tasting the beans, I was turned off by the quality of them. The idea of building a business from beans came to me. It wasn’t until 1997 that I found the opportunity to launch my idea to sell beans at the Downtown Farmers Market. Today, the Downtown Farmers Market is one of the most diverse and successful markets in the country. It brought the opportunity to set in motion Rico Brand and many other local businesses. 72


The opportunities that I’ve had as an immigrant and an entrepreneur in Salt Lake City are because of the institutions, nonprofit organizations, friendly business environments, different business programs,

and a thriving economy all set in motion due to this great community at large. Salt Lake City is an excellent example of America’s philanthropic mindset and the reason why I’ve decided to pay it forward. I


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Profile for Downtown Alliance

Downtown Magazine - 2017 Fall / Winter  

Downtown Magazine - 2017 Fall / Winter