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Salt Lake City Breaks Ground on Marmalade Library Branch

A beloved neighborhood near Capitol Hill in Salt Lake City is making a bold transition from blight and isolation to vibrancy and activity. The evolution moved forward today in a big way after city officials broke ground on the new Marmalade Library Branch.

Along 300 west, between 500 and 600 north in Salt Lake City there are a couple of gas stations, a handful of commercial spaces and a few single-family homes. There is also an empty dirt lot that’s been vacant for more than a decade. That’s where the new Marmalade Library Branch is being built. Kevin Blalock, with Blalock and Partners is the principle architect for the project, which he says will change the face of the block.

“Probably in about two years, this will be full of people, of buildings of dogs and kids running around, a little water feature going through the green space,” Blalock says. “We’re still trying to get a grocery store to come in and anchor the corner. So yeah, it’s a lot of excitement, a lot of new life being breathed into this area.”

The two-story library with an open, modern design is expected to anchor a much larger economic development plan along 300 west. Salt Lake City Councilman Stan Penfold represents the neighborhood. He says residents can expect the addition of a local grocer, new residential and retail spaces and the addition of grassy medians, trees and crosswalks along the bustling 300 west corridor. 

“It’s a great neighborhood to be close to downtown, close to freeway access, close to transit,” Penfold says. “It’s still affordable and so it’s a great place to live in the city that I think is going to change over time because I think it’s going to become really popular.”

Penfold says the library will be completed in the next 18 months. 

Whittney Evans grew up southern Ohio and has worked in public radio since 2005. She has a communications degree from Morehead State University in Morehead, Kentucky, where she learned the ropes of reporting, producing and hosting. Whittney moved to Utah in 2009 where she became a reporter, producer and morning host at KCPW. Her reporting ranges from the hyper-local issues affecting Salt Lake City residents, to state-wide issues of national interest. Outside of work, she enjoys playing the guitar and getting to know the breathtaking landscape of the Mountain West.
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