The Kentlands Initiative, the nonprofit organization that for the last seven years has been trying to develop the Granary District neighborhood, is hosting a block party this Friday and Saturday night from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.
The block party, which will be held at 500 West and 800 South, across the street from the CAPTAIN CAPTAIN Artist Studios, will feature a beer garden, bands, bouncy house and food trucks.
Christian Harrison, one of the founders of the Kentlands Initiative, says this is the fourth iteration of the block party. Last year’s event was folded into the Granary Row installment.
In 2013, Granary Row rose from the center of 700 South between 300 and 400 West. Formed by shipping containers that doubled as storefronts, the pop-up experiment ran from June until November.
Though popular in its first iteration, Granary Row’s second installment failed to materialize. Just before it was scheduled to open this summer, Harrison announced he’d come to an impasse with Salt Lake City officials over regulations.
Harrison says those kinks are being worked out and he’s hopeful that Granary Row will return in 2015.
“We’re actively working with the city council and the mayor’s office to amend some of the code that got in the way this year so that we can do it again next year,” Harrison says. “We’re looking forward to doing it again next year.”
Granary Row, and the block party, Harrison says, are ways to draw attention to the Granary neighborhood’s unique character. To this end, Harrison says the Kentlands Initiative formed in an effort to drum up support for development in the area.
But not just any kind of development. Harrison says Kentlands is trying to promote small development projects that will highlight, rather than bulldoze, the neighborhoods charm.
“You need to develop at the very smallest level,” Harrison says, as opposed to larger-scale, multi-block development.
Along with courting developers and hosting events, Harrison says Kentlands, which does not currently own any property in the area, also hopes to one day have its feet in a developer’s shoes.
“We also have plans to get our hands dirty and do some development ourselves,” he says.
Additional information about the block party is available at https://www.facebook.com/KentlandsInitiative
Granary Row fans who are still bummed out that the pallet-encircled beer garden and shipping container pop-up retail space was missing-in-action in 2014 will get a taste of what they missed this weekend.