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North Ogden’s Village at Prominence Point may get new developer

By Tim Vandenack - | May 9, 2022
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Sandy Cochran, a resident of the Village at Prominence Point development in Ogden, stands in a field where an independent living facility was to have been built on Friday, May 6, 2022. New plans call for 12 townhomes and a clubhouse on the land instead.
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A new developer may acquire a portion of the Village at Prominence Point project in North Ogden, including this undeveloped parcel where apartment buildings are to be built. The land was photographed Friday, May 6 2022.
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Sandy Cochran, a resident of the Village at Prominence Point development in Ogden, stands near a field where an independent living facility was to have been built on Friday, May 6, 2022. New plans call for 12 townhomes and a clubhouse on the land instead.
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The documents show the revamped development scheme for the Village at Prominence Point project in North Ogden.
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Sandy Cochran, a resident of the Village at Prominence Point development in Ogden, stands in a field where an independent living facility was to have been built on Friday, May 6, 2022. New plans call for 12 townhomes and a clubhouse on the land instead.

 

NORTH OGDEN — Ownership of the yet-to-be developed land at the Village at Prominence Point development, focus of controversy and complaints by some living there, may be changing hands.

That has at least one resident breathing a preliminary sigh of relief. If the proposed sale goes through, plans for a proposed independent living facility, that had drawn fire from some, will be scrapped.

“I never thought this big building would go away,” said Sandy Cochran, whose townhome abuts the land where the facility for seniors, to be three-to-four stories high, was to have been built.

Beyond the tweaks to the development plans, the change of ownership means Arizona developer Jack Barrett, the main force behind Village at Prominence Point, would no longer be involved in project. That, says Cochran, would be a big deal. The area is spread over 33 acres on the west side of Washington Boulevard north of 1700 North.

“Huge, huge,” she said, “because he would not listen to us.” Barrett couldn’t immediately be reached on Friday for comment.

Dean Ito, who lives in a patio home at Village at Prominence Point is leery of getting too excited, pending an actual change of ownership. “I’m cautiously optimistic, but I’m very cautious,” she said.

The Village at Prominence Point project was the focus of intense debate when the North Ogden City Council approved plans in 2017 for the sprawling development of townhomes, patio homes, apartments and more. As approved, plans call for 600-plus housing units.

Since then, it’s been the focus of on-and-off controversy, with some residents lamenting the lack of promised amenities, things like a swimming pool and clubhouse. News of the independent living facility on a 1.35-acre island of land surrounded by patio homes and townhomes, meanwhile, came as a surprise to some, sparking concern it would block the existing residents’ mountain views and generate more car traffic than the street around it can handle.

The new would-be developers are Unified Business Alliance and Davies Design Build. A rep from the partners, Greg Cronin, addressed the North Ogden City Council on the plans at the body’s April 26 meeting. The two entities would acquire part or all of the undeveloped portions of Village at Prominence Point from Barrett, Meritage Companies and the others that now control the land.

Cronin said the developers aim to build “better communities” in developments like Village at Prominence Point, factoring the relatively high housing density. Most of the planned townhomes and patio homes in Village at Prominence Point have been built or are being built while the new developers, if they acquire the land, would handle construction of the planned apartments, yet to be started.

“How do we go from boxes for people to communities, because we know that we have a lot more people that are going to be living closer together,” Cronin said. The new developers would also take over the land meant for commercial development on the east side of the property that abuts Washington Boulevard, according to North Ogden City Attorney Jon Call.

If the sale materializes, the new plans call in part for scrapping the independent living facility and instead placing 12 townhomes and a clubhouse on the land where it would have sat.

“One thousand times better, because they are going to be two-story townhomes,” Cochran said.

The lower profile of the townhomes means views won’t be so obstructed. The reduced number of housing units, 12 townhomes versus 68 apartments in the senior complex, means fewer cars and less potential traffic congestion. Plans for the clubhouse, meanwhile, mean residents will be getting a least some of the recreational offerings they say they were promised.

Also as part of the plans, Cronin said the new developers would increase the size of two of the planned apartment buildings on the eastern part of the Village at Prominence Point property — still vacant and awaiting development — from three to four stories high. That would allow for development of more apartments — to be geared to seniors — to offset the units lost by elimination of the independent living facility.

The number of housing units would actually increase from 607 to 619 under the Unified Business Alliance/Davies Design Build proposal. The number of parking spots would also rise, from 1,204 to 1,299.

“Staff is real supportive of this project. We think the developer has the capacity to take the project over the finish line and really make it something that will be beneficial to the community,” Scott Hess, North Ogden’s planning director, told officials at the April 26 meeting.

Council members would have to approve the proposed project changes, and some of them indicated support for the proposal.

“I like what you’ve presented,” said Councilmember Phil Swanson. Councilmember Charlotte Ekstrom added that the felt the plans made sense and that she likes the redesign.

The City Council is to formally take up consideration of the changes at its May 24 meeting, Call said.

If the plans are approved and the sale goes through, “it would likely be 12 to 18 months before any apartment units were rented out,” Call said. The new developer “will be in control of the schedule and will likely push their team hard to get completed buildings very soon.”

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