Interrupted by recession, Coral Canyon development underway again

Entrance to the Coral Canyon development, Washington City, Utah, April 26, 2016 | Photo by Julie Applegate, St. George News

WASHINGTON CITY – Plans are underway for the completion of the Coral Canyon development in Washington, a project that will eventually include up to 3,000 homes and 100 acres of commercial development.

Master plan for the Coral Canyon development | Image courtesy of State Institutional Trust Land Administration, St. George News
Master plan for the Coral Canyon development | Image courtesy of State Institutional Trust Land Administration, St. George News | Click image to enlarge

There are currently about 1,250 homes in Coral Canyon, but the project was delayed when the recession hit, said Kyle Pasley, deputy assistant director of the planning and development group of the Utah School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration.

SunCor Development, Coral Canyon’s original developer, pulled out of the project during the recession.

“As the recession hit, SunCor’s parent company decided not to continue in the development business and we, as an agency, took back Coral Canyon and took on the role of master developer,” Pasley said, “and have been doing that since 2010, mostly just keeping the project going.”

As the economy improved, SITLA began looking for a new development partner to come into Coral Canyon.

Map of Coral Canyon development | Image courtesy of State Institutional Trust Land Administration, St. George News
Map of Coral Canyon development | Image courtesy of State Institutional Trust Land Administration, St. George News | Click image to enlarge

After an extensive vetting process, SITLA officials chose Jack Fisher Homes as a development partner, Pasley said, and an agreement is expected to be signed by late June.

Jack Fisher Homes will take on the day-to-day role of actually developing the property while SITLA will remain the underlying landowner and controlling party, Pasley said.

The Coral Canyon development will total about 2,000 acres when completed including open spaces like hills, ravines and the Coral Canyon Golf Course.

Full development of Coral Canyon is expected to take another 15-17 years, depending on what the demand is in the real estate market.

Most of the residential development will be located in Washington City, while planned commercial areas are primarily in the City of Hurricane. The Coral Canyon development is already part of Washington’s master plan and ordinances, Pasley said.

While 96 percent of SITLA land is earmarked to benefit public schools in Utah, that is not the case with this transaction. A large proportion of the Coral Canyon transaction will benefit the Miners Hospital.

“The money is set aside to help pay for … retired miners’ and current miners’ health concerns,” he said.

The original Miners Hospital was located in Park City, Pasley said, but over the years was absorbed into the University of Utah healthcare system.

Eighty percent of SITLA’s development portfolio is in Washington County, Pasley said, because when Utah became a state and the agency was formed it was not given much land along the Wasatch Front.

“Most of the land is around the rest of the state,” Pasley said, “and so the development opportunities are not as high as opportunities for oil and gas, mining and grazing, other uses like that.”

Email: japplegate@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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