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Ogden leaders foresee up to $936M in airport development with reinvestment zone

By Tim Vandenack - | Apr 8, 2023

Tim Vandenack, Standard-Examiner

Ogden-Hinckley Airport, photographed March 25, 2023.

OGDEN — Some $350 million worth of projects have already been put forward as possibilities for the future of the Ogden-Hinckley Airport.

As city leaders edge toward creation of a community reinvestment area encompassing the airport, to enable use of tax funds to cover the cost of some improvements, they’re envisioning up to $936 million in investments over the long haul at the facility.

The city envisions improvements to hangars, better infrastructure to support aeronautical, aerospace and defense businesses and more. Officials are also hoping for a return — someday — of commercial flights to and from Ogden, which were eliminated last year when Allegiant and Avelo airlines halted their offerings.

Of course it’s all just a vision, for now.

The Ogden Redevelopment Agency, made up of Ogden City Council members, plans to hold a public hearing next month on a plan to create what’s called the Airport Community Reinvestment Area, meant to jumpstart the efforts. Agency members received an overview of the plans last month from Brandon Cooper, director of Ogden’s Community and Economic Development Department, and they’ve been a focus of discussion for perhaps four years.

Image supplied, City of Ogden

The yellow lines pictured encompass Ogden-Hinckley Airport and represent the boundaries of a proposed community reinvestment area. The CRA, if ultimately created, would allow for use of property tax revenue to help with a series of massive airport upgrades envisioned by city leaders.

The hearing is tentatively set for May 16 and officials may act on its creation that same day. If they do form the Airport CRA, the new body would be able to tap into as much as $119.32 million in tax-increment finance, or TIF, funding over 25 years to help with the proposed list of changes and improvements.

“The hope with TIF is that it catalyzes and boosts private investment to higher levels than what typical market conditions would justify,” Cooper said.

That is, the $119.32 million in TIF money for certain infrastructure improvements at the airport would leverage yet more investment by the private sector, officials say, as much as $936 million in all including the infrastructure funding. In the case of the proposed Airport CRA, the TIF money essentially represents deferred property tax revenue generated by new development that would otherwise go mainly to Weber County, the city of Ogden or the Ogden School District.

Among the possible airport projects that have emerged at this point are:

  • A pair of Hill Air Force Base initiatives to develop off-base facilities that would require an investment of some $100 million.
  • A $200 million proposal from a non-military aerospace company that needs up to one million square feet of industrial space.
  • $50 million for construction of multiple commercial hangars for use by non-military aeronautical companies.

Ogden officials have already secured the needed support from the Ogden school board, the Weber County Commission and the Central Weber Sewer Improvement District to use TIF funding. Of the $119.32 million, $68.55 million would come from property taxes otherwise earmarked for the Ogden School District, $28.37 million would be funneled from the City of Ogden, $17 million would come from Weber County and $5.4 million would come from the sewer district.

Tim Vandenack, Standard-Examiner

Ogden-Hinckley Airport photographed March 25, 2023.

Those funding levels represent the property tax potential from future development.

Ogden leaders are also looking into creation of a redevelompent zone in the Ogden neighborhood west of Wall Avenue between 12th and 21st streets, dubbed the Gibson Community Reinvestment Project Area. The airport proposal is further along.

Ogden-Hinckley Airport photographed March 25, 2023.


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