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Land deal OK'd, but how much sprawl did City Hall block?

(Park Record) A parcel of land City Hall has agreed to purchase in Thaynes Canyon to preserve as open space could not have been heavily developed under its current zoning restrictions, meaning it is unclear to what extent officials will have checked sprawl with the deal.

The Park City Council on Thursday night, on a 4-0 vote with City Councilman Joe Kernan not in attendance, approved the $5 million purchase. It encompasses 136 acres of mountainous land running between the Silver Star development and Park City Mountain Resort's King Con lift. The purchase is scheduled to be completed by Sept. 30.

Nobody testified before the City Council vote, and the elected officials did not speak extensively about the deal. Mayor Dana Williams said the purchase, made from the Armstrong family, had been a "long time coming." In a prepared statement released by City Hall, a member of the Armstrong family, Kerry Armstrong, said "it would break our hearts" if the land was developed.

The land is just outside the Park City limits and is governed by Summit County's development rules. Summit County has put the land in its 'mountain remote' zone, a highly restrictive designation. Under the county's development rules, one house is allowed on each 120 acres of land within the zone.

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