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352 acres will buffer Salt Lake airport

The Salt Lake City Department of Airports has completed a contract to purchase more than 300 acres of land west of the Salt Lake City International Airport for an estimated $30 million.

So why the purchase?

Officials say the land would act as a buffer zone to keep development at a distance.

The 352.47 acres will cost the Department of Airports "in the neighborhood of $30 million," according to Barbara Gann, airport spokeswoman.

Gann said that the sale price isn't final and could be changed pending future evaluations of the land.

The addition of the extended property would help prevent other property developments from getting too close to the airport, leaving it room to grow in the future.

"It's a proactive measure to protect the airport from encroachment and leave room for some expansion," Gunn said.

Gunn said there are no current plans to expand the airport.

The property sellers — Skypark International LC and Mountain Enterprises LLC — are owned by three brothers from Sanpete County: Wendell, Gene and Evan Jacobson.

The Jacobsons manage and own more than 8,000 apartment units in 12 states across the U.S. United States.

The property was purchased by the Jacobsons more than 10 years ago from Frank and Nadine Gillmore. They had been in discussions with several other potential buyers, including The Rockefeller Group, a Baltimore-based real estate firm, and a California developer, before they began negotiating for the past several months with the Department of Airports.

Representatives of the property sellers could not be reached for comment Friday night.