Games Get Land for Athlete Village
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) _ The state, the University of Utah and the Army have signed an agreement to transfer a dozen acres of land from Fort Douglas to the university for a 2002 Winter Games athlete’s village.
The 96th Regional Support Command is currently housed at the fort just east of the university campus. The university will build housing on the site which will serve as an athlete’s village for the 2002 Olympics, then be converted into student dormitories after the Games.
``The athlete’s village is the core of any Olympics,″ Frank Joklik, president of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee, said in announcing the memorandum of agreement Monday. ``Making sure (athletes) are properly housed and accommodated, giving them the opportunity to live up to their full potential, is extremely important.″
In exchange for the land, the university will pay the Army $500,000, money budgeted for such housing projects. The state has agreed to use the Utah National Guard to move the reserve center’s equipment and supplies to a new site in Salt Lake County.
University President Bernard Machen said the Olympic Village will initially consist of 4,000 units, which will be scaled back to 2,500 units after the games.
The $148 million project will be paid for by $120 million in state bonds _ to be repaid by the university with rent on the student dorms _ and $28 million from a state bond to be repaid by SLOC after the Games.
The university has agreed to preserve several historic pink sandstone buildings, including the jail, post exchange, theater and three storage buildings. Olympic officials will determine how to incorporate those buildings into their plans for the Games.