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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

South Station Lofts at Daybreak

The South Jordan Planning Commission approved the South Station Lofts that will be located on the corner of Daybreak Parkway and Lake Run Rd. Apparently there was a 3 to 1 vote with one member of the commission citing safety concerns of residents backing out of their driveways into the alley. I also heard that there were concerns about the architecture of the 4 story, 38 unit structure. While it is prudent to postpone final judgment until the end product is constructed, the renderings of the building are not aesthetically appealing to me at all. Sure the project is environmentally friendly, but this modern architecture approach in a residential application does not fit in with the surrounding residential environment. However, I do think that there is merit in architectural diversity. Not every building should look the same.

Gold Medallion Homes will be the builder and will be marketing the units here in Daybreak. There will be a total of 4 studio units, 6 one-bedroom units, 25 two-bedroom units and 3 three-bedroom units. The design will most likely be replicated across the street to the West as well.

While I do not live on Topcrest (the road on which single-family homes are poised to have South Station Lofts right in their backyard) I have found that most residents on the street do not want this development. There were meetings with Kennecott Land, but minimal interest was demonstrated at these meetings with only 8 residents showing up. Apparently, there were no citizen comments or citizens for that matter at the planning commission meeting as well. While one outspoken home owner continues to communicate with Kennecott, the lack of interest by most of the affected homeowners has given Kennecott the belief that the plan status quo will do.

Density is of course the goal with this project and it is needed to justify the TRAX station located nearby, but this density could definitely be achieved in a more aesthetically pleasing manner. More concessions could have also been made to address traffic and safety concerns for residents of Topcrest. Backing out into an alley that will at peak periods have nearly 50 cars per hour without being able to see the traffic until you are actually in it is an accident waiting to happen.

For Kennecott's defense: a thorough traffic study was conducted, a lengthening of resident driveways, widening of the alley itself, and measures are being taken to obstruct line of sight between the homes and the condos. The 4 story section of the building is also the furthest it can possibly be from the Topcrest homes given the lot dimensions. Additionally, no residential windows will directly overlook Topcrest backyards. These measures are definitely welcome, but more extensive measures and design input would have been enacted if resident participation were higher.


Rachel said...

I actually welcome some modern architecture to Daybreak. I don't think it will detract at all. Some of the charm and character of older neighborhoods that Daybreak is trying to mimic includes a mix of old and new. On of the things I love most about European architecture is the co-existence of old and new, side by side. It's beautiful. Not being afraid of variety will be one of the things that continues to keep Daybreak interesting and full of character; instead of looking like a cookie cutter development.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the update. I am the vocal homeowner that has been working with Kennecott. I'm saddened but not surprised that there hasn't been more homeowner involvement. More than half of the houses adjacent to the condos are rentals with absentee landlords. I wasn't able to make the planning meeting due to another obligation, but I knew from my conversations with the city that it wouldn't make any difference anyway. The city already gave away the farm when it gave Kennecott carte blache to do whatever it pleases in Daybreak. Kennecott is the monarch and we are but its lowly subjects.

The master "plan" documents are a joke. There are zero height restrictions, density is calculated at the convenience of Kennecott and can be redefined at any time, and there are no protections whatsoever from adverse impacts when Kennecott changes its mind. The fact that none of the individuals I have worked with at Kennecott actually live in Daybreak speaks volumes. I believe South Jordan completely abdicated its legal responsibilities back when Daybreak was first created. I suspect that their negligence will find its way into a courtroom before the Daybreak disaster runs its course.

While I appreciate the modest changes Kennecott has made to their plans, I think that we will look back at this decision as the point at which Daybreak lost its way and destroyed its appeal for anyone wanting something other than a high-density condo or apartment. For what I paid for my house, I could have bought something larger and nicer in many other neighborhoods and not had to worry that I would find myself being dwarfed by a four-story condo building. I fully subscribe to the mixed use and neo-urban concepts; but these must be well-managed in order to be successful. What I've seen thus far does not give me confidence in the future of Daybreak. Why would any sane person buy a single family home (or anything else) in Daybreak knowing that whatever Kennecott and city promised could be overturned at any moment? I look forward to the day that I can put the for sale sign in front of my house and see Daybreak in my rear view mirror for the last time. I regret ever allowing myself to be suckered by their phony promises and believing that at least the city had the best interest of its residents at heart.

Anonymous said...

I am apparently an very uninformed resident on Lake Run Road. Had I known that buildings of this magnitude was going to be constructed where I live, I would have been at every and any meeting held about it. How is one supposed to know what is going on?

Jenn said...

Were the homeowners told something else would be built there? If so, what was it? If not, they only have themselves to blame for not finding out what will be built in the huge empty lot behind their home.

I also don't mind the new style- I think it will add variety to Daybreak, just like the new townhouses in North Shore. Not everyone wants to live in a single family home with a porch.

I must say how much I truly appreciate this website. It is informative and honest, while being factual at the same time. I have visited another daybreak website and it consists mostly of complaints of the HOA, Kennecott, the neighbors, the activities . . . the list goes on. I think if you want to find fault in something, you will, and Daybreak is no exception. However, you can't deny Daybreak had a variety of fantastic amenities and gorgeous landscaping that other neighborhoods don't offer in the SL valley. I say let the complainers move out of daybreak and into their desert brown cookie cutter McMansions that the Utah natives seem to love so much if they dislike it so much. Seems to me this is a lot of "not in my backyard" syndrome going on.

I think Daybreak has a lot of great things going for it, and I look forward to the progress the future holds.

Anonymous said...

I live on Topcrest. This is not what I was told would be behind my home by our builder's sales associate and the information Pavilion. Yes I asked over and over. I was told there would be more homes or a green space then a street with more home. Never thought I needed this in writing. I was also told what a great location this was, close to tracks and future shopping. When our home was purchased the scale of the future design of Daybreak was off and after looking at a vast opening of land with no streets one at the time would have thought it very possible that more homes could be built (at least one more row) Poor planning to have alley driveways on the north side of topcrest as I am concerned with the traffic, in fact that is proof to me that the land was thought of for different use.I was never given information regarding the future loft structure or meetings. The majority of homes on Topcrest are being rented out. According to my neighbors who are renters the landlords seem to not care to much with what's going on in Daybreak nor the homes they live in. I have no problem with mix of modern architecture, I actually like it however this is not what I was told my view would be for a home that I paid top dollar for. One has to remember that because Topcrest was one of the last streets built in founders park the cost of homes were at it's highest before East lake opened. I would still like to voice an opinion to Kennecott even if it doesn't change the outcome. Is there a way I can do that?

mehulpkg said...


I am a prospective buyer of one the rented properties on Topcrest.

I am really concerned about the 4 storey structure coming up in backyard of Topcrest homes. This is outrageous. South Jordan City would never approve such development outside of Daybreak. It means today's deflated prices would also have a bumpy ride to appreciate in a good market for these Topcrest homes.

Should I buy the home and at what price, now knowing that there is going to be a 4 storey structure in the backyard?

I think in Daybreak if there is empty land, anything can come up and you cannot assume anything.