Skip to main content

Davis Journal

Legacy Events Center expansion in final design phase

Sep 02, 2022 10:24AM ● By Becky Ginos

FARMINGTON—The Legacy Events Center in Farmington has grown from a facility primarily used for horse races and equestrian events to hosting youth sports, trade shows, cheerleading, dance and dog shows. As the use has transitioned over the years, the County Commission has seen a need for more space. The design of a 120,000 square foot building on the north end of the center is underway and expected to be finalized in 2022 with a ground breaking in spring 2023 and completion at the end of 2024.

“Method Studio Architect is doing the design,” said Community and Economic Development Director Kent Andersen. “We’ve brought in Layton Construction as CM/GC (Construction Manager/ General Contractor) during the design phase to help us better understand the actual cost, the timing and availability.”

The Legacy Events Center was established in 1990, he said. “It was supported by tourism tax dollars and designed for equestrian events. In 1998, the building opened and was built to host the 2002 Olympic Rodeo Cultural Event. Since 2002, the venue rarely held equestrian events that exceeded 5 percent of the seating capacity and struggled to compete in that shrinking market.”

The commission looked for other ways to help the project have greater impact to the community, recognizing that youth sports were a strategic way for the county to use the facility and could be hosted for years to come, said Andersen. “More often I get comments from residents saying they have been to the facility to attend a youth sporting event than any other event. With 35 percent of the county population under 19 – 122,000 kids – we used to raise crops and now we raise kids.”

A youth sports tournament brings in visitors that impact tourism revenue, he said. “They stay at our hotels, eat at our restaurants, etc. This new facility will allow for the opportunity to bring in basketball and volleyball. It will also be designed in a way to hold high school graduations. We’re excited to have those in Davis County instead of parents having to drive to Weber State.”

During the summer hotel occupancy is at 80 percent, said Andersen. “In the winter it is 60 percent. We want to drive more hotel stays during the winter period.”

Recognizing a small number of equestrian related activities, including 4-H programs, would be displaced, the commission committed $5 million to construct an equestrian venue at the USU Botanical Center in Kaysville, he said. “That is estimated to be complete in late spring 2023.”

The events center is unique, said Andersen. “It is centrally located along the Wasatch Front and the Western, U.S. There is easy access to I-15 and it’s only 15 minutes from the Salt Lake International Airport.”

What also sets it apart is the proximity to Station Park, he said. “When parents are here for an all day tournament they’re going to want to be entertained and fed. What better place for that than Station Park.”

The new facility is still in the design phase, he said. “We’re trying to stay within budget so it may mean some things are cut. We’re really excited. It will certainly have a big impact on businesses but also the community and youth sports. It also creates a location for equestrian events so we can preserve that heritage.”