October 1, 2008

U. Project Gets High Marks From Council

The University of Utah's Universe Project received high marks from the Salt Lake City Council, as did university officials for their willingness to involve the city and the public in the planning process.

During a work session Tuesday, the City Council got its first official chance to weigh in on the university's plans to replace nearly 8 acres of surface parking on the corner of 500 South and University Street with a residential and retail development.

"I see an amazing effort to reach out to the community, to get input and develop something that will be acceptable in meeting your goals, the developer's goals and the community's goals," Councilman Soren Simonsen said.

Mike Perez, the University of Utah's vice president of facilities management, said the university is a "destination point," and the proposed Universe Project would help the school present itself as one.

"We want a lively campus," Perez said.

The project is expected to move out of the conceptual phase in about two to three weeks, when university officials and consultants settle on a development proposal.

(c) 2008 Deseret News (Salt Lake City). Provided by ProQuest LLC. All rights Reserved.