City looking to extend tax break period for West Ogden development

Wednesday , May 10, 2017 - 5:15 AM

MITCH SHAW, Standard-Examiner Staff

OGDEN — The city hopes extending a tax break period will help cover unforeseen costs associated with a major development project in West Ogden.

The Ogden administration is looking to modify its plan and budget for the Trackline Economic Development project, extending the time tax increment can be collected there by 12 years.

The extension would allow Ogden’s Redevelopment Agency to collect tax increment for the project until 2045, with a maximum collectable amount of $18.2 million — an $8 million increase from the project’s initial budget.

Made up 121 acres between 24th Street and Middleton Road from the railroad tracks to G Avenue — a mostly dormant section of West Ogden — the project will include a mix of commercial, manufacturing and light industrial space.

The development includes a 51-acre business park geared toward outdoor recreation called the Ogden Business Exchange. The park is centered around the historic Ogden Exchange building, once the administrative center of the Ogden Stock Exchange.

RELATED: Project bringing new life to Ogden Exchange Building beginning to take shape

According to the city, the stockyard was once the largest livestock market west of Denver. During it’s most productive year in 1949, more than 2.4 million sheep, pigs, cattle and horses came through the stockyard, a haul of over $87 million. 

The city plans for a full renovation of the old Exchange building, which would serve as administrative offices.

The park is being developed by OBE Vision, LLC, part of the Centerville-based Ascent Construction company. Ogden-based bicycle components manufacturer ENVE Composites has already set up shop, operating as the park’s anchor tenant.

RELATED: Beer maker moving into West Ogden Trackline development

Work already done on the project includes clearing land, removing debris, crushing some 50,000 tons of concrete, building a new road and reconstructing another one, and installing all new utilities. Environmental remediation work was also completed to remove petroleum and heavy metals from the soil.

In a Tuesday Ogden City Council work session, Community and Economic Development Deputy Director Brandon Cooper said unforeseen costs associated with preparing the site have left both OBE and the city short of the money needed to complete the project.

So far, the city and the developer have spent nearly $19 million on the project.

Cooper said the additional revenue created by the extension would allow the city to pay off debt associated with the project, but more importantly, allow OBE Vision to seek additional financing using the tax increment as security. Cooper said the latter is essential in creating funding to finish the project.

Tax Increment Financing diverts future increases in property tax revenue so the money can be reinvested in other improvement projects inside of a defined area, like Trackline.

Cooper said a state Taxing Entity Committee, made up of representatives from local taxing agencies, unanimously approved the amended plan earlier this week.

The plan will be up for final approval at the June 20 council meeting, according to council Executive Director Janene Eller-Smith.

You can reach reporter Mitch Shaw at mishaw@standard.net. Follow him on Twitter at @mitchshaw23 or like him on Facebook at Facebook.com/MitchShaw.StandardExaminer.

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