SANDY — Utah’s tallest building outside of Salt Lake City could be coming to Sandy soon.
The Sandy City Council unanimously passed a plan on Tuesday for a $500 million multi-use project for its Cairns District, which includes an 18-story corporate tower split between offices for businesses and a hotel. A sky bridge/restaurant space, as well as six other spaces for restaurants or retail, an apartment complex, a four-story enclosed parking, and pedestrian walkways are also a part of the plans for the area.
The project approved is considered the epicenter of Sandy’s Cairns District, said Nick Duerksen, the city’s economic development director. The project, which is located at 10300 S. Centennial Parkway, was awarded to a team from Raddon Development and Beecher Walker Architects in 2018.
It’s located a few blocks north of the Southtown shopping area in the city. Ron Raddon, chairman of Raddon Development, said he hoped to start work on the apartment complex as soon as possible and that the project is currently expected to take five to six years from start to finish.
The project is slated to add 400,000 square feet of office space and another 50,000 square feet of restaurant/retail space to the city. The planned hotel will have at least 225 rooms and more than 200 apartment units will be added to the city.
If all goes as planned, Sandy officials say the 18-story tower is believed to be the tallest building in Utah outside Salt Lake City.
The design for the project draws inspiration from hip urban areas in the county. Jory Walker, president and principal architect at Beecher Walker Architecture, told the council the problem the southern part of the county — often referred to as the Point of the Mountain — is that jobs are coming there but many people are choosing to live in Salt Lake City and commute down to places like Sandy.
That’s where the apartments, retail and restaurants, as well as an open courtyard for people to walk around between the apartments and restaurants come into play.
“We need cool, urban places for people to live,” Walker said. “That’s one of the things I really think is really cool about this. We can create more of an urban, modern concept that people want to be. If you look at 9th and 9th (900 East and 900 South in Salt Lake City) and you think about what they’re doing in Sugar House, there’s this energy that I think we need to have here.”
Ruth’s Chris Steak House, as well as other bar/restaurants, have expressed interest in the project, he added.
Walker and Raddon mentioned Sheraton as the primary chain interested in the hotel, but that has yet to be finalized. They also said the high-rise office spaces have garnered interest from tech companies looking to move into the area.
If you look at 9th and 9th (900 East and 900 South in Salt Lake City) and you think about what they’re doing in Sugar House, there’s this energy that I think we need to have here.
–Jory Walker, president and principal architect at Beecher Walker Architecture
When questioned by the council, Walker said there would be “enough parking for the project.” The exact parking stalls for the various buildings are to be determined later, he said.
Walker, who conducted the presentation Tuesday, told the council there have been about 10 designs over the past 2 1/2 years as architectures have tried to find a solution for the site. The plan was to come up with a concept where “mountain meets urban.”
“To be forced to relook at things, study and re-evaluate it the last 2 1/2 years, I’ve learned so much about this site,” he said. “I really feel like we’ve come up with the right answer. To me, that’s what architecture is all about.”
Construction for the Cairns District began in late 2014 with the planned 25-story Prestige high-rise building. The design was later adjusted to 12 stories (153 feet), according to Emporis. The entire district is 1,000 acres city with office, retail, entertainment and residential that the city hopes blends in the city’s outdoor elements with “urban vibrancy.”
“Our vision for the Cairns District has always been to create an exciting, energetic urban hub where our residents and others can come dine, go to the theater, shop, work and live in one place and I believe this new development is the critical piece we needed to make this vision a reality,” Sandy Mayor Kurt Bradburn said in a statement.