LAYTON -- The shortest distance between visitors and the dollars they spend in Layton is a straight path from the area hotels there, to the Davis Conference Center.
On Tuesday, the Davis County Tourism Tax Advisory Board agreed to recommend to the Davis County Commission that Layton city receive $100,000 from the tourism revenue fund to help with the construction of a 1,350-linear-foot pedestrian walkway within its inner-city commercial district.
The board made the motion at a luncheon meeting held at the conference center in Layton.
The concrete walkway will be designed to create a shorter, more pedestrian-friendly, path between the center and hotels surrounding it, Layton officials said.
The total cost of the lighted 8-foot-wide walkway, to run in an east and west direction from the north end of the conference center parking lot, is $241,000, Layton Economic Specialist Ben Hart said.
"We want to set this up so people feel comfortable walking from one area to the other," Hart said.
Layton has agreed to fund $100,000 of the total project, with the intent of getting the remainder of the funds needed for the project -- $41,000 -- from area businesses that would benefit from the walkway.
Hart said although the city does not have a check in hand from the business community, he is confident that area businesses will come to the table based on the positive response they have received for the project.
Having 83 percent of the dollars needed for the project in-hand should make it more enticing for area businesses to participate, said Bill Wright, Layton Community and Economic Development Director.
One way the city can make the project more enticing for area businesses to participate is by placing their business logo on the directional signs that will be part of the walkway, Wright said.
TTAB member Spence Kinard said he loves the project and is willing to support it on the condition that, if Layton is unsuccessful in moving the project forward, it return the $100,000 contribution back to the TTAB.
The TTAB receives its funding from the county's tourism tax, which consists of a hotel room tax, a restaurant tax and a vehicle rental tax.
The county's tourism tax generates about $4.4 million in revenue on an annual basis. Those revenues collected must be used for projects that promote tourism for the county.
Davis Area Convention and Visitor's Bureau President and CEO Barbara Riddle said the walkway project is an amenity that will benefit the entire county.
It is the goal of Layton to begin construction on the walkway by spring of 2012, Layton Parks Superintendent Brock Hill said.
"We would like too see it happen relatively quickly," he said.
"This is the first phase of many that would help develop this area," Hill said.
TTAB Chairman Gary Peterson told Layton officials at Tuesday's meeting that he would like to have them keep the board informed of any future phases they may do in further developing a walkway path around the center.
Layton officials publicly thanked the TTAB for its support.