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SLC losing population?

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As I'm doing research on SLC one thing i've noticed is the census bureau is estimating a slight downturn in SLC's population. The loss is shown at about 3,700 people. Do you guys think this is accurate? Utah is gaining population at one of the faster rates in the country. But the construction in the central business district, is by far one of the healthiest for a midsize city. I can't find any concrete data on the MSA. But I would imagine that the suburbs would be absorbing any of the core cities losses. One thing I can add about that is, census estimates are based in large part on income tax returns. They can be off by sometimes tens of thousands by the time the actual census is published. Especially if a city has a large base of immigrants who have entered the country illegally. As they generally don't file tax returns.

SLC, also has quite a good size land area, 110sq mi according to wikipedia. For a city of about 180k that's alot of land. Is the population very spread out in the MSA? I find it interesting. I look at two cities of like size. Des Moines Iowa, pop est. 196k land area 77sq mi. Grand Rapids Michigan, pop est 195k 45sq mi. These cities are much more dense. Is it just that they are older and were planned during a time when automobiles were scarce? What is SLC's master plan? Do they cater to that more dense urban style of planning. Or is it like Phoenix, wide open suburbs.

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As I'm doing research on SLC one thing i've noticed is the census bureau is estimating a slight downturn in SLC's population. The loss is shown at about 3,700 people. Do you guys think this is accurate? Utah is gaining population at one of the faster rates in the country. But the construction in the central business district, is by far one of the healthiest for a midsize city. I can't find any concrete data on the MSA. But I would imagine that the suburbs would be absorbing any of the core cities losses. One thing I can add about that is, census estimates are based in large part on income tax returns. They can be off by sometimes tens of thousands by the time the actual census is published. Especially if a city has a large base of immigrants who have entered the country illegally. As they generally don't file tax returns.

SLC, also has quite a good size land area, 110sq mi according to wikipedia. For a city of about 180k that's alot of land. Is the population very spread out in the MSA? I find it interesting. I look at two cities of like size. Des Moines Iowa, pop est. 196k land area 77sq mi. Grand Rapids Michigan, pop est 195k 45sq mi. These cities are much more dense. Is it just that they are older and were planned during a time when automobiles were scarce? What is SLC's master plan? Do they cater to that more dense urban style of planning. Or is it like Phoenix, wide open suburbs.

The latest data I was privy to suggested that Salt Lake COUNTY's numbers were around 950K - up from around 900K at the time of the 2000 Census. The growth in the southwestern part of the county is just phenominal. From an east bench vantage point at night, the Herriman area's increase is particularly apparent.

What is nowhere nearly as clear is whether, apart from native increases, there is any really appreciable influx of population from elsewhere. Midrise commercial buildings are being constructed in noteworthy numbers, especially in Cottonwood Heights, but vacancy signs are ubiquitous. One wonders if all of the construction is as speculative as it would appear.

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Utah's biggest problem is its sprawl, particularly "Metro" Utah: SLC, Provo and Ogden, which have all but merged into one metropolis.

When I was last in Downtown SLC, there were a lot of for rent signs on office buildings, and a lot of storefronts appeared to be vacant. And I won't even get into Crossroads Plaza, which is virtually abandoned supposedly because of Gateway Center.

From being in town, I just got the impression that the economy in the city is pretty sluggish right now. Like the Olympics didn't really do anything for Salt Lake as far as economic growth is concerned. But, of course, I'm probably wrong.

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Utah's biggest problem is its sprawl, particularly "Metro" Utah: SLC, Provo and Ogden, which have all but merged into one metropolis.

When I was last in Downtown SLC, there were a lot of for rent signs on office buildings, and a lot of storefronts appeared to be vacant. And I won't even get into Crossroads Plaza, which is virtually abandoned supposedly because of Gateway Center.

From being in town, I just got the impression that the economy in the city is pretty sluggish right now. Like the Olympics didn't really do anything for Salt Lake as far as economic growth is concerned. But, of course, I'm probably wrong.

The reason that Crossroads mall and the ZCMI mall are as empty as they are is that they have been moved in anticipation of the Mall reconstruction project. Which may one day start.

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Colin you bring up a solid question though, Did the olympics have any lasting impact on Salt Lake City?

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Colin you bring up a solid question though, Did the olympics have any lasting impact on Salt Lake City?

I just cannot see it.

Today, for example, the county leadership killed public funding of a major league soccer stadium. Everyone knows that you have to ante up plenty of public money to play in the major league sports game. If not, someone always will. Just ask Charlotte about how much more it cost to build the new NBA arena for the Bobcats than it would have cost when they refused to do so for the Hornets. Let's make that the New Orleans Hornets. At least Charlotte learned that lesson, albeit painfully.

I guess what I'm saying obliquely is that having had a real taste of "major-leaguedom" (through having done an excellent job of hosting the Olympics), not much was ultimately learned.

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You know tho, Cybear I don't always think that is always a good investment of taxpayer dollars. I know it works in alot of places. But alot of places don't need to use public money for things like stadiums.

Given that Utah is like the reddest state in America, I would think that its politics would reflect things like that.

What were the lasting affects of the oympics.

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SLC built a light rail line in anticipation of the Olympics. They built Delta Center (or remodeled it; one of the two). They also remodled things in the airport and expanded or renovated the freeway in certain areas. It showcased the city and HAS helped the economy; definately through tourism. The reason why the city center has so many vacant signs is due to the lack of planning. There are hardly any restrictions on building and the city center has gotten to be so expensive that developers just move out to the suburbs. Utah doesnt really have many restrictions as to what and how things are built and where.

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You know tho, Cybear I don't always think that is always a good investment of taxpayer dollars. I know it works in alot of places. But alot of places don't need to use public money for things like stadiums.

Given that Utah is like the reddest state in America, I would think that its politics would reflect things like that.

What were the lasting affects of the oympics.

I think that I am talking less about good versus bad investments or liberals versus conservatives than about my perception of the rules of the professional sports franchise game: Cities pay for stadia on demand and if they refuse to build new facilities, the owners often move the teams to the most deep pocketed, starry eyed places.

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Given that Utah is like the reddest state in America, I would think that its politics would reflect things like that.

You haven't seen anything until you go to Wyoming. Now that's a red state.

SLC is actually the most liberal part of the state, too.

I'd agree. I've been to Salt Lake three times now: 1993, 2000 and 2006. Besides a few more buildings Downtown, the light rail, a nicer I-215 and some Olympic propaganda, very little seems to have changed there.

I don't see Utah getting another pro team anytime soon, not even soccer.

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Yes, but do you think that Utah not getting any other pro sports team is because of not building venues, or just because there really isn't a large enough population base and media market to support one?

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Yes, but do you think that Utah not getting any other pro sports team is because of not building venues, or just because there really isn't a large enough population base and media market to support one?

It's also about a lack of agressiveness here. Make no mistake, Salt Lakers are industrious and rightfully proud of a beautiful and friendly city. Thye're just not terribly aggressive folks...like Southerners or Easterners. I think everyone here would be thrilled if an NFL franchise dropped in from outer space, but I can't see a concerted effort like that mounted in the early 90s by, let's say, Memphis for a team.

Although Memphis lost to Jacksonvile and Charlotte, the demographics in all of these places are comparable. I just don't see here the killer instinct that got the Jags to Jax, the Panthers to Charlotte, the Titans to Nashville and yes... finally...the Grizzlies to Memphis.

If MLB ever expands, don't bet against the River City.

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About Salt Lake City losing population--the city limits themselves don't extend very far south, which is where the biggest growth is happening. The city itself has been giving over a lot of previously residential land to industrial/commercial zoning and development, which is probably why the population figures are shrinking. The only place Salt Lake City could grow residentially is either up (and there are a few high-rise condos/apartments in the works) or West--and West is mostly industrial or empty land that is going to be industrial. So...I can see SLC's official population shrinking further as years go by.

But the growth in the rest of the Salt Lake Valley/Salt Lake County is phenomenal, and should continue. The valley itself should top 1 million residents in the next few years the way things are going.

RE: the Olympics...I think they will have a far-ranging positive impact on the city and state, although I agree that other than a few infrastructure improvements, there hasn't been a whole lot.

and RE: Real Salt Lake Soccer--I really don't think there's enough population to support another sports franchise. In between baseball, hockey, NBA, and college and arena football, sports fans $ is being spread pretty thin as it is. It doesn't help that Real Salt Lake had one of the (if not THE) losingest record in the League, and their current venue is difficult and inconvenient for most fans to get to. And there's been a lot of negative press about their proposed stadium--different landowners, cities and teams have gotten pretty ugly about that whole thing. I think if it came to a ballot, the stadium would get voted down.

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So you're basically saying that SLC is in effect built out? I looked at two other cities of like size. ( I believe I mentioned them above) Both of them have a larger population, and one Grand Rapids Michigan has about half the land size. Are the residential neighborhoods in the city essentially built out? Big yards and such?

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We're getting there. Within the city limits, I'd say yes, it's built out. There's still some free land in the suburbs, but more and more of those are turning into subdivisions too. By far the biggest area of empty land is on the west side of the valley, and most of that is owned and is being developed by the mining company (mentioned in another thread here). But SLC itself is awfully close to being built out residentially. Part of that is that the city is penned in on the north and east sides by mountains, and on the south side by another city ("South Salt Lake", which I think should just be annexed and absorbed by SLC)...and out west is all industrial.

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