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Taylorsville bucks gloom, enjoys a building boom

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TAYLORSVILLE — Despite a national recession, Taylorsville is having its biggest quarter for new construction dollars ever.

"Despite the gloom and doom that's out there, we think we've got it pretty good," said Taylorsville economic director Keith Snarr.

From October through the end of December, officials project the city will issue building permits for $39 million in projects. Snarr credits the boom — the largest since the city incorporated in 1996 — to the growth of local business.

"We've got a good core of businesses that are doing well, and we're having a hard time finding places to put everybody," he said.

Plans and a grading permit have been approved for the 78,000 square-foot expansion of the Sorenson Research Park at 900 West and 4500 South. And construction on a multimillion-dollar Alzheimer center is slated to begin as early as next month, Snarr said.

The state has also broken ground on new Unified State Lab, a $31 million building scheduled to open in October. The project did not require a building permit from the city, but the lab is expected to bring a number of high-paying jobs to the city.

To make room for all the construction, city officials are looking at two spots along Redwood Road as potential redevelopment agencies. A group has been hired to study spots near 4100 South and 5000 South that could be the future home for retailers.

Still, Snarr knows there are obstacles the city will have to overcome.

"Some of these projects are kind of at the starting blocks," he said. "They're still facing challenges with financing. But, knock on wood, we hope they will become a reality."

With no major malls in the city, Snarr said Taylorsville has not been hit as hard as some communities by the fiscal meltdown. And the city's largest employer, Salt Lake Community College, is expected to grow as workers look to learn new skills.

"We've been fortunate, but this isn't a time to rest on your laurels," Snarr said. "We've got more in the pipeline that will help us so we don't go flat."

E-mail: afalk@desnews.com