An architectural drawing of the stalled Sugar House project.

The corner coffee shop and kitschy boutiques were demolished, but the high-end apartments and shops promised in their stead were never built.

Instead, Craig Mecham's blighted property in the heart of Sugar House has served as one of Salt Lake City's most visible reminders of the current credit crunch.

The Salt Lake developer planned to build a mix of upscale office, retail and residential space only to see funding for the project dry up.

After months of negotiating with the city, Mecham filled the hole on the corner of Highland Drive and 2100 South with dirt last month. Frank Gray, Salt Lake's community and economic development director, said the city has talked with Mecham about using the property for a farmers market.

Mecham has kept in contact with city leaders, Gray said, and he remains optimistic the project will be able to move forward "in the next year."

"He's the victim of the same thing as everybody else," Gray said. "He's actively working with financial institutions to get the project up and under way."

— Aaron Falk