SALT LAKE CITY

SLC Council considering proposal to lease section of neighborhood park to University of Utah

Feb 21, 2024, 8:00 PM

Shane Romano and Sami Sowers take a rest in the shade at Sunnyside Park in Salt Lake City, Tuesday,...

Shane Romano and Sami Sowers take a rest in the shade at Sunnyside Park in Salt Lake City, Tuesday, June 9, 2015. Salt Lake City is considering a proposal to lease a little over an acre of Sunnyside Park to the University of Utah for a new university baseball stadium. (Chris Samuels, Deseret News)

(Chris Samuels, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Salt Lake City is considering a proposal to lease a little over an acre of Sunnyside Park to the University of Utah for a new university baseball stadium.

The proposal includes a commitment of $4.2 million from the University of Utah for improvements to Sunnyside Park.

The Salt Lake City Council heard comments from the public on the matter during a meeting Tuesday night.

University professor James Webster told the council the proposal was flawed and made for a terrible plan.

“There’s over 35 feet of grade change across this property,” he said. “Everybody says ‘Okay, we’re not going to have a wall, we’re going to have a 20 to 25-foot wall just as a retaining wall in leftfield. When you move around to rightfield, you have another 12-foot wall. It is just an infeasible plan in so many ways.”

Webster continued, saying if a student of his were to present this plan, he would not grade it kindly.

“It wouldn’t even get a D, in my opinion,” he said.

Local rugby coach Robert Kingsford said it’s a great idea. He hopes a new ballpark would help bring attention to the needs of area teams who utilize the park. Additionally, Josh Whittaker, representing Beehive Sports and Social Club, hopes the project comes with improvements to existing fields where the club’s teams already play.

The council voted to take further action at a later, yet to be specified, date

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SLC Council considering proposal to lease section of neighborhood park to University of Utah