Developers hope to gain final approval for Splash City Adventure Park, a Polynesian-themed resort in St. George, Utah.
The fate of the proposed new resort lies in the hands of the St. George city planning commission. On Tuesday the commission gave approval to some of the plans for the new water park. However additional approvals are required before the developer, Red Cliffs Development and Investments, can go ahead. The city council will debate the issues in the coming weeks.
Developers are calling the project Splash City Adventure Park. “It would be themed along the lines of a Polynesian-style tropical resort, right splash in the middle of the surrounding red rock desert,” says Shayne Barney, a broker representing the team of investors involved in the project.
The proposed park would span ten acres. It could comprise a 900 foot lazy river and an 80-foot slide tower. A large building is also included in plans. This would contain arcades and a party space as well as playing host to other indoor activities.
Project engineer Eric McFadden says the aim is for future expansion further down the line. The location was chosen with this in mind. The city plans show space for two restaurants. However any new businesses would also require city approval.
This isn’t the first time a water park has been planned for the area. An earlier 13-acre park was outlined in 2014 but the developers did not move forward with plans.
The location is zoned for commercial projects like a water park. City approval is pending on whether the plan included suitable parking and whether the site plan meets city code.
Another issue is that residential areas are sited in close proximity. Residents have raised concerns about noise, traffic, and the effect on property values of nearby homes. “They’re going to know we’re there,” says Barney. “But we’re going to do everything the city allows us to do to mitigate it.”
Water use was also a concern. However Barney claims that the majority of water would be filtered and recycled. “The park would likely need about 140,000 gallons on peak summer days to get all of the facilities operating, but then water recycling would lower demand,” he says. He points out that the amount used would be “comparatively small” and actually significantly less than if a new residential neighbourhood with lawns occupied the same space.
Developers are hoping for a 2018 opening date.
Image: City of St George