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Draper Journal

Natural gas pipeline going in at The Point with water and roads soon to follow

May 09, 2024 01:30PM ● By Mimi Darley Dutton

Large pipes like these for infrastructure necessities such as natural gas are being installed at The Point. “Our goal is to have The Point ready (for vertical construction) for when interest rates come down,” said Draper Mayor Troy Walker, a member of The Point’s State Land Authority Board. (Courtesy The Point)

As The Point continues its progression, stakeholders are focusing on an essential aspect: infrastructure. 

“After a few years of listening to the public and creating a vision, developing plans and getting development partners in place, we’re now in a position to start building. Those driving by the site can see that infrastructure work has already begun. When you’re building out a community like this, it’s easy to forget what happens under the ground, but you don’t have a community without well-functioning infrastructure to allow construction and occupancy to move ahead,” said Alan Matheson, executive director of The Point. 

Natural gas pipeline is going in now and a request for bids went out in April for the site’s water tank. According to Matheson, that water tank for future residents will contain four million gallons to start and will grow as demand increases. Following natural gas will be piping for wastewater, stormwater and culinary water, roads, and utility infrastructure including telecom fiber. Electrical lines will also be going in and a new substation will be erected at the site. 

“Projects needed for future parts of the development are more efficient to put in now when they can be done at the best cost and functionality,” Matheson said. 

Matheson indicated speed of work is a consideration when analyzing bids for projects at The Point. “We hope that some bids come in with an aggressive schedule.” 

Meanwhile, finishing touches are being put on road alignment plans to improve traffic and to make the site more compatible with transit, and requests for those bids will go out to the construction community in the coming months. “One of the first infrastructure projects will be the extension of Porter Rockwell Boulevard from 14600 South to the 600 West interchange on Bangerter Highway, which will provide construction access and improve regional traffic flow,” Matheson said. 

Matheson admitted it’s hard to project, but he hopes roads will be going in, pipes will be laid under rights of way, and grading for the River to Range Trail will be happening as soon as this coming September
or October. 

He explained that infrastructure will likely take 18 months to two years to complete, but vertical construction will begin before all the infrastructure is finished. “The development partners plan the first vertical buildings within one year. So much depends on the market, but that’s our goal at this point,” Matheson said. 

Vertical construction will begin with The Promenade, a mixed-use shopping district. “That’s going to be the heart of the whole project. As part of that, we’ll put in Convergence Hall, the beginning of the Innovation District. We want some of the first pieces of this development to be focused on innovation for higher learning to be working with industry on developing new technologies and solving Utah problems,”
Matheson said. 

The Governor’s Office of Economic Opportunity has identified five industry clusters they hope to attract to The Point. They include advanced manufacturing, aerospace and defense, financial services, life sciences and healthcare, and software and IT. The Point’s Innovation District will focus on those areas as well as Utah challenges such as water and energy. 

In September 2023, a Community Advisory committee was established to help shape development of The Point with input from members of the surrounding communities including Draper, Bluffdale, Riverton, area businesses, Silicon Slopes, and the Jordan River Commission. Councilmember Tasha Lowery is Draper’s formal representative on that committee. Matheson said he has weekly calls with Mayor Troy Walker and City Manager David Dobbins. 

“We’re committed to making sure this is a real benefit to the people of Draper,” he said. Walker serves on The Point’s 12-member State Land Authority Board which
meets monthly. 

“People will see steady construction into the foreseeable future. It’s exciting to see that after laying the groundwork, we’re going to have this innovation community that we’ve all been waiting for,” Matheson said. λ