Logan was given a $1 million donation from The Jim and Carol Laub Family Foundation and Cache Valley Electric Co. to help fund Center Block Plaza.
Mayor Holly Daines has been working on revitalizing downtown Logan for a few years, and creating Center Block Plaza is one part of that project.
Daines said she was delighted with the Laub family’s donation and that she and the family “share a vision” for a vibrant downtown.
“Research shows public plazas are a great way to draw people downtown with amenities, entertainment and dining, and that encourages private investment,” Daines said. “It also gets people out of their cars and walking, and that helps businesses as well.”
Daines said additional donations will be announced in the future.
The plaza will include an outdoor stage, dining areas, a giant chess set, other games, overhead lighting, shade canopies, a large propane fire pit, restrooms and planters. There will also be a water feature with music and lights, and a skating rink for the winter months.
“It will be a place for our citizens to gather and enjoy,” Daines said. “The views across to the historic tabernacle will be lovely.”
The plaza will be built across Main Street where the Emporium used to be. That building and one other building will be demolished, and two other buildings are for sale for businesses to come in and provide food services.
This project will cost $4.3 million. The Logan Municipal Council, acting as the Redevelopment Agency, approved the funding in March. The Historic Preservation Committee and the Planning Commission gave approval in April.
Daines said no general fund dollars were used.
“This generous contribution will be used to offset that cost, allowing the city to use those funds for other RDA projects,” she said.
Daines said because it’s been 100 years since historic features like the tabernacle, historic courthouse and theaters were built, it’s time to continue investing in downtown.
“Downtowns are changing, and ours is aging,” she said. “This project will build on the success of Center Street and provide a public gathering place in our historic downtown.”
Jim Laub made a statement regarding the donation.
“We are pleased to partner with Mayor Daines and Logan City to give back to our community in a way that will benefit our fellow citizens and make our city an even more beautiful, interesting and better place to live,” he said. “Carol, Mark, Eric, and I view this not as a contribution but rather an investment in the community that has been so good to our family for over 100 years. We recognize the hard work and dedication of our current and former employees of Cache Valley Electric Co. who, over its 106-year history, have helped make this investment possible.”
Demolition of the two buildings is expected to begin by December, and construction is expected to begin in spring 2022.
Other parts of Daines’ plans to revitalize downtown Logan include an archway and sign on Center Street and beautifying buildings and walkways in the area.
Daines is running for re-election against Dee Jones and Lowell Huber. Jones has criticized Daines’ projects, saying they won’t return investment and will “cause some grief down the road.”