Master-planned 294-acre development breaking ground in Bluffdale
Grand plans are envisioned for what has historically been a sod farm in Bluffdale.
Independence at the Point is a new master-planned community being developed by DAI, one of Utah’s largest land developers.
The development spans 294 acres of land in Bluffdale and is located south of 14600 South at approximately 500 West. The plan for the community includes approximately 1,900 housing units, 27 acres of commercial space and a park and trails system.
“We have spent considerable time master-planning the property and have worked diligently to ensure that the amenities and features of the project meet the needs of the surrounding area,” Nate Shipp, DAI partner, said.
Although developers are now anxious to start building, the road to construction for this project has been a long and bumpy one.
The original developer started assembling the ground and putting the plan together over a decade ago, Joe Salisbury, DAI partner, said.
The Independence project was first introduced to Bluffdale City officials under Mayor Wayne Mortimer, and the master plan was approved as a 500-acre project in 2005, City Manager Mark Reid said.
“Because of the recession, it never got started, and bits and pieces of it went into bankruptcy, and it splintered off into several groups,” Reid said.
As the economy began to recover, DAI began working with the original landowner, Lyn Kimball, managing partner of Mt. Jordan Limited Partnership and the banks to obtain a portion of the property for development, Salisbury said.
Although DAI initially utilized the original Independence development agreement approved by the city, some changes and revisions have been necessary in scaling back the scope of the original project to make it work most effectively for the current development.
“We have worked closely with city leaders and planners to ensure the best use of land,” Bryan Flamm, DAI partner, said. “We have worked hard to build more than just a subdivision -- Independence will truly be a community that residents will be proud of.”
The homes being offered in this project will bring a whole new dimension to Bluffdale City, due to the variety and density of the housing options. These will include smaller single-family homes, townhomes and apartments.
Traditionally, Bluffdale has prided itself on large, single-family lots, and the zoning options in the city reflected that. The original concept presented by the Independence developers required the creation of a new zoning ordinance, which was passed by the city council in December 2004.
Although this is a different development than anything created in Bluffdale before, Mayor Derk Timothy believes that Independence will help establish a wider socioeconomic diversity for the city.
“Right now, there aren’t many places in Bluffdale that my kids could afford to live,” Timothy said. “This will be a positive as families grow up in Bluffdale and are able to stay in Bluffdale.”
Although some residents may fear that a development this large and different from historical Bluffdale will change the city, officials say they have planned so that the city can grow and progress, yet maintain its history and identity.
“The location is strategically placed, because it is close to the freeway, so the traffic patterns won’t affect the city. It doesn’t interfere with the core of Bluffdale,” Timothy said.
Crews are currently working onsite to construct the infrastructure for the development.
DAI plans to sell building lots to a variety of builders, including Alpine Homes, Cadence Homes, Candlelight Homes, DR Horton and LaPorte Group. Builders plan to begin selling homes in November, and pricing is anticipated to start under $200,000.