1.  What is your vision for the Station Center neighborhood (200 South to 400 South; 450 West to 600 West)? What investments do you think the City should make in this area?

 Access to opportunity is an important responsibility for District 4. With human-centered design, affordable housing nearby, access to the Rio Grande neighborhood, this community has amenities, greenspace, and housing ready for new residents.  The Redevelopment Agency should take the opportunity of having city-owned property in this area to partner with the University of Utah and amplify the neighborhood for students and families. The proximity that this community has to the Fulsom Trail makes it an important pedestrian byway. It is exciting to imagine a district that uniquely integrates industry and connects into our West Side and East Side communities.

2.  What are the most important initiatives and investments you will lead to create a safe and welcoming downtown for residents, workers, employers and visitors?

There are a plethora of opportunities to work together to help Downtown stay safe, welcoming, and vibrant to residents and visitors alike. Below are important initiatives that I will champion:

  • Designing with, and providing direction to, SLCPD on a centralized security plan that incorporates non-police security teams and social services specifically in the Central Business District.
  • Closing Main Street permanently to cars to become a pedestrian mall, like in international destinations.
  • Expanding the network of pedestrian-friendly streets and adding more human-centered design.
  • Outdoor seating has been a smashing success. It’s time to look at waiving (or at least reducing the barrier to) encroachment permits and lowering the entry for small businesses to encroach.
  • Enforcing on the practice of land-banking – putting to beneficial use the empty retail space or lots that have not been a net-positive to neighbors, businesses, or our Main Street.
  • Free UTA passes for service workers coming into Downtown.

These concepts have emerged from conversations with residents, businesspeople, and workers in Downtown. Anything I propose here (or ever) would be fleshed out with the input of local stakeholders.

3.  Salt Lake City’s Central Business District population will double in the next two years. How can the City enhance and expand green space and public spaces to support a healthy and vibrant downtown neighborhood? 

We are Salt Lake City! Beautiful mountains and wildlands are all around. People pick our city as their permanent home because we are not a concrete jungle. Our Downtown should leverage private-public partnerships (Bryant Park is an excellent model) to build a city that echoes the landscape of its natural environment. 

  • I’m interested in pushing design elements that incentivize more green-roofs to help cool our urban center but also invite the public to see our city from a different perspective. 
  • We need to wield public art as a tool to reverse the trend in blighted spaces and invite more community.
  • I love the mid-blocks that have been intentionally designed such as Regent Street. This is another important design that needs to be continued as we build densely in Downtown. 
  • We need more wayfinding to help people explore these gems such as Pioneer Park, Dinwoody Park, City Creek, and Gallivan.

4.  What is your plan for responding to the crisis of people living without shelter on the streets of Salt Lake City? Will you enforce no-camping ordinances? Please include your strategies for funding the initiatives that you propose.

Let me be clear: housing is a human right and should be the long-term solution to our crisis. That means we need to be aggressive in ensuring an adequate supply of supportive and entry-level housing options for people who need to transition back into stable situations.

That said, I’ve also worked on the issue from an enforcement perspective for a long time, in Downtown especially. It is my hope to fund and expand a Central Precinct Station that would redeploy community-engaged officers throughout the center of our City and Downtown. Studies show that to change the elements of crime that persist through urban areas like our Downtown, we need to activate the area through community events and retail activity, but most importantly, through visible human policing. An example of this is 300 S, when officers and I worked together to move our police cars and police officers to work in the visible line of sight to unsheltered residents that congregate daily, completely deterring criminal activity. I am interested in expanding a sanctioned camp to help the enforcement of the no-camping ban by giving an actual safe place for people who are chronically homeless. It is unacceptable that our beautiful Main Street has been allowed to remain blighted at the same time as growth is bringing so much potential to our city. I am also intrigued by the potential to look at transient room tax to capture a sliver of our tourism economy for reinvestment.

5.  Please share your strategies for attracting and retaining employers and skilled workers to Salt Lake City.

People looking at resettling in Salt Lake City, no matter where they are coming from, will want access to schools, affordable workforce housing, safety, and beautiful pedestrian streets. I’m honored that Salt Lake City employees and local unions have put their trust in me this election as their endorsed candidate to advocate for their needs beyond a livable wage to invite them back into our city. 

  • Now, more than ever, our city needs to look beyond affordable housing and look at policies that help sustain people such as mixed-family housing allowing more than 3 unrelated people per household. 
  • Free TRAX usage for service workers accessing Downtown. 
  • Help folks access permanent housing through homeownership programs. 
  • Centralize a security program Downtown to help keep crime away from our store-fronts and business. Workers deserve to feel safe first and foremost, without harassment.

6.  How can the City best support the Utah Jazz’s long term residency in Downtown Salt Lake City?

The needs of the Utah Jazz are critical to sustaining a long-term sports culture and community in our city. 

The Delta Center itself serves many purposes: entertainment, sports facility, community building and more. It has diversified and broadened its reach and is helping shape our burgeoning city. SLC and the Council need to oversee a safe, exciting experience taking our TRAX into Downtown. Lengthening service times during Delta Center events and Utah Jazz game nights is the collaborative effort I will lead to get ticket holders into downtown and onto Main Street instead of heading straight back home. 

7.  What is one of your favorite dishes from a restaurant in the Central Business District?

It’s so hard to pick! I’m a big fan of the Gobbler, a delectable turkey, cranberry, avocado sandwich from the Robin’s Nest. I adore Caputo’s roasted red sandwich. For dinner, nothing makes me happier than eating at Takashi or Eva’s (no relation!).

8.  What else would you like downtown property owners, merchants, employers and residents to know about your campaign for councilperson?

Downtown is growing, and the growth we experience is a tool we need to wield. This may sound corny but I really mean it, growth is a beacon for all and is quite literally expanding our horizon. Downtown is home to our hopes and dreams in a bustling city that also makes space for us to  enjoy the surrounding cascading mountains, snow, and streams. 

It has been my primary responsibility to care for our Downtown and advocate for it. It was my job to communicate with our stakeholders and connect them with tools such as grant funding and security to help them get through trying times. I’m eager to continue showing up; to work in the trenches with you and to build our vision of a world class city, together.