The newly organized Benchmark Area Economic Development Committee wants to find out what kind of business development local residents want in South Davis County.
Committee Chairman Walter V. Jones said the 20-member panel of business people is formulating a survey for residents in the six communities from Farmington to North Salt Lake. They want to find out what kind of business and industry they should try to entice there. The survey is expected to be taken next spring.Some residents have said they want the area to remain a bedroom community, but economic planners are not sure how deep that sentiment runs, said Claudia Conder, committee vice chairwoman.
"We want to find out what economic development people want. For example, a lot of people want to bring a community college or a four-year college here," Jones said. "If some people in an area are strongly opposed to new development, we won't have businesses locate there."
The survey is part of a plan to create better cohesion among economic development activities in the South Davis area. The volunteer group, organized through the Bountiful Area Chamber of Commerce, hopes to help Davis County's economic development office. They also admit they have a responsibility to help educate people about how industry could strengthen a tax base needed for education and government services in the high-growth county.
The committee is proposing spinoffs from existing South Davis business. This "packaging" concept could, for example, help bring lodging facilities to the area near Lagoon to capture traffic generated by the amusement park, Jones said.
They also want to encourage local residents to shop south Davis businesses. Plans are in the works to develop a way for residents to receive discounts at area businesses. The committee is surveying merchants to see what they think about a possible discount card.
The committee wants to help spur industrial development along a new I-215 corridor in North Salt Lake and Woods Cross. It is also assisting in the study of a fresh-water lake proposed by a Bountiful architect for part of the eastern shore of the Great Salt Lake.