SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah outdoor business community will soon be adding a new member to its ranks.
Seattle-based outdoor and action sports retailer evo announced Tuesday the company will develop Campus SLC — a project designed to create strong community ties around a shared passion for outdoor culture, according to a news release.
"The goal is for it to be comprised of 'like-passioned' businesses with a similar ethos," said Tommy Trause, evo's head of hospitality, community marketing and ecosystem development.
The project will be located in the Granary district of Salt Lake City, just south of downtown, and will include renovation of a 100,000-square-foot brick, timber and concrete block building that will house an evo retail store, local retailer L9 Sports, a hotel, dining options, an art gallery and creative workspace. The campus will also include an “All Together Skatepark” as well as other recreation options, Trause said.
"What we're trying to design is a place where the customer can come in and get a little bit of work done, bring the kids to the skatepark, grab a cup of coffee or a bite to eat and have a chance to interact with other like-passioned individuals in the recreation community," he said.
The planning opening date is targeted for fall of 2020.
“Our vision is to create a place for the community, bringing ethos-driven businesses together along with customers that share our passion for the outdoors and all of the cultural elements that surround the lifestyle,” said evo founder and CEO Bryce Phillips.
The oldest building in the planned development area was built in 1926, the release states, and will be designed by Salt Lake City-based Lloyd Architects, the firm known for their designing of other community spaces including Campos and Publik coffee houses.
“We believe in retaining the integrity of these historic buildings, which have such soul and history," Trause said. "They just don’t make them like that anymore.”
The new evo retail location and the skatepark will have indoor/outdoor features as well as offer the same kinds of programs as other evo locations, including demo and service for skiing, snowboarding, skateboarding and wakeboarding, along with mountain bike retail, an art gallery, and an entertainment venue for movies and music, the release says.
"Kind of organically, our stores have become these meeting places or crossroads," he explained. "We're going to be a little more proactive with our new campus in Salt Lake City to really design it not just as a destination, but we want it to be a place where you can congregate maybe before going to play outside or you can go and have a really good (time) after playing outside."
Trause said the project will serve as a community within a community where people can connect with other like-minded people of all ages.
"Whether you want to go backpacking for the first time or you want to go skiing, those activities are more enriching if you have a vibrant community to share them with," he said. "We've got this amazing privilege and opportunity to help connect those people to their tribe."
As part of the company's focus on investing in the communities where it does business, evo is also sponsoring the Salt Lake City SheJumps chapter’s Wild Skills program that provides outdoor adventure programs and curriculum to underserved kids.
Headquartered in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle, evo recently acquired five retail stores in Whistler, British Columbia in Canada as part of its expansion plan, the release states. Trause said the Utah project will be the company's first foray into a large-scale campus-type development.
“We’ve been able to grow and thrive as a result of our focus on community in a way that’s authentic to our customers,” Phillips said. “We’re thrilled and humbled to be a part of this project in Salt Lake City and can’t wait to see it come to life.”