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Redevelopment plans underway for Draper land once state prison moves

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Major efforts kicked off Monday to redevelop the 700-acres of state-owned property at the Utah State Prison in Draper. (Photo: KUTV)

Major efforts kicked off Monday to redevelop the 700-acres of state-owned property at the Utah State Prison in Draper.

In just two short years, the state prison will be vacated and the plot of land will be repurposed.

”Located near the Point of the Mountain and Silicon Slopes, experts say "The Point" land is prime real estate for something spectacular.

“The Point is unlike anything we have seen in the history of Utah and an opportunity that we rarely see anywhere else in the world,” Lt. Governor Spencer Cox, co-chair of The Point of the Mountain State Land Authority, stated in a news release. “Development at the site, coupled with the opening of the newly rebuilt Salt Lake International Airport, signals a critical milestone as Utah competes in an increasingly globalized economy and becomes a renowned destination for research, innovation and sustainability.”

Officials are aiming to create tens of thousands of high-paying jobs on the site. They are also planning infrastructure investments that enhance mobility in the area and reduce the impacts of future development on the transportation system.

The Point of the Mountain State Land Authority is an 11-member board tasked with overseeing the planning, management and development at The Point. The Board hired Steve Kellenberg, a nationally renowned planning expert who has literally written the book on sustainable communities, to manage the creation of a master plan for the site. Kellenberg has worked on large-scale developments around the world, including the Middle East, China, Singapore and South America, according to a news release.

The process to plan the site will take several years.

“We did not get to this point overnight,” Rep. V. Lowry Snow, Co-Chair of The Point of the Mountain State Land Authority, stated in a news releaes. “We have worked diligently for many years to establish a regional vision, laying the groundwork literally and figuratively for these planning efforts.”

Snow led the regional visioning efforts for The Point of the Mountain area from 2016 to 2018. The process involved thousands of Utahns and developed a framework for the current planning phase of the project.

The visioning process determined that, if done right, development at The Point and the surrounding 20,000 undeveloped acres would generate 150,000 new high-paying jobs, an additional $10,000 in average annual household income for Utah families and $7.7 billion and $1.4 billion respectively in state and municipal revenues by 2050, according to a news release. It could also reduce the amount of time drivers spent stuck in traffic by 20 minutes during peak travel periods.

Snow says by 2050, the land could bring in up to $9.1 billion in sales and income tax revenues.

Leaders say Utah weathered this pandemic in the best way possible. From the low unemployment rate to opening a brand new airport opening Tuesday, the project's become yet another beacon of hope to rebuild the economy.

“We are committed to making The Point a sustainable development and an accessible destination for everyone,” Alan Matheson, The Point executive director, stated in a news release.

We have a duty to make prudent decisions that will directly benefit current and future generations of Utahns. We intend to plan and develop The Point in a way that facilitates mobility, improves air quality, and ultimately enhances our quality of life.

“Utah is quickly becoming one of the top innovation markets in the country,” Theresa Foxley, president and CEO of the Economic Development Corporation of Utah, stated in a news release. “With Salt Lake and Utah Counties projected to have nearly 1.5 million people each by 2060, The Point is perfectly situated between two major labor sheds and will serve to catalyze and accelerate important economic and educational opportunities.”

The new prison will be built on a site in Salt Lake City.

A survey for public input has been opened and residents are encouraged by The Point officials to submit a response by Oct. 16. Find it here.

For more information about the project, visit