Jeremiah’s Restaurant, High Country Inn focus of $9M in upgrades
An artificial waterfall leads into a retention pond behind Best Western Plus High Country Inn Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017, near 12th Street in Marriott-Slaterville. Expansion plans include adding another bridge over a second retention pond, landscaping and a wall to add privacy to the outdoor space for potential wedding receptions and more.
SARAH WELLIVER/Standard-Examiner

Jeremiah's Restaurant, High Country Inn hotel focus of $9M in upgrades

MARRIOTT-SLATERVILLE — Big change is coming to Jeremiah’s Restaurant on West 12th Street and the High Country Inn hotel next door.

Millions of dollars worth of change, in fact — partly enabled by up to $3.5 million in incentives and tax breaks from the city of Marriott-Slaterville, Weber County and other taxing units.

Work started last week on the planned 26-room expansion of the hotel, including the addition of a new convention and reception area, on undeveloped land just south of the existing structure at 1335 W. 12th St. Also planned is a 45-seat addition to Jeremiah’s, according to Mark Peterson, general partner of 12th Street of Ogden, the hotel’s and eatery’s parent company.

Strong consumer demand is pushing the plans, with an estimated price tag of $9 million to $10 million. But Peterson also singled out landscaping plans around the new hotel and reception areas, which call for at least one decorative waterfall. The hotel and restaurant constitute a popular locale in Marriott-Slaterville, just west of Ogden, that fills up quickly on weekends.

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“It’s going to be extremely unique and very cool,” Peterson said.

Longer-term development plans also call for construction of a 122-unit assisted-living facility on an undeveloped parcel southeast of the hotel and Jeremiah’s, with an estimated cost of $25 million to $28 million. “Really, we would be filling a gap that’s in the market,” Peterson said.

Weber County commissioners on Dec. 12 unanimously approved an inter-local agreement with the city of Marriott-Slaterville governing new county property tax funds generated by the expanded hotel and restaurant and new assisted-living facility. Per the accord, part of the new county revenue would be funneled back to the plans for 15 years, from 2018 through 2032. Property tax funds from the Weber School District, the Weber Fire District and other units would also go to the plans, totaling up to $2.43 million in the 15 years, with perhaps $635,000 of that coming from the county.

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Construction work on the expansion of the Best Western Plus High Country Inn is shown here Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017, near 12th Street in Marriott-Slaterville.
SARAH WELLIVER/Standard-Examiner

On top of that, the city of Marriott-Slaterville is waiving around $1.1 million in impact fees, according to figures prepared by the city.

Local government, though, won’t just be funneling money to the project.

The county, school district and other entities would still retain a large chunk of the new property tax revenue generated by the development, around $2.4 million over 15 years. And the expansion is expected to boost sales tax and other revenues entering the coffers of Marriott-Slaterville and other entities by around $1.76 million a year.

The local payroll will go up and the city of Marriott-Slaterville also will gain use of a retention pond to be developed as part of the project for secondary water.

The net expansion of 26 rooms at the High Country Inn, a Best Western Plus hotel originally built in 1979, will boost the total from 111 to 137 rooms. The upgrade also entails the addition of an indoor pool while the planned convention and reception area will be capable of accommodating up to 300 people, according to Peterson.

Jeremiah’s will be expanded to the east, on property where an outdoor patio area that gets limited use now sits. “We just need more space there because we have demand,” Peterson said, noting waiting times of 45 minutes and more for diners on some weekends.

The various elements of the hotel and restaurant expansions will take three to eight months to finish, and the planning process and initial construction phase have proceeded without major issues. “It’s going very smoothly for a multimillion-dollar project,” said Scott Vanleeuwen, the mayor-elect and a Mariott-Slaterville city councilman.

Contact reporter Tim Vandenack at tvandenack@standard.net, follow him on Twitter at @timvandenack or like him on Facebook at Facebook.com/TimVandenackReporter.