Despite recession, downtown Salt Lake is rising

The yellow and red banners hanging on streetlights and buildings make the claim, but the proof is in the construction crews and cranes, the coming soons and the grand openings.

Downtown is rising.

"It feels different; it feels alive," said Jason Mathis, executive director of the Salt Lake City Downtown Alliance. "Something special is happening in Salt Lake that isn't happening in other metropolitan areas."

While a slumping economy has halted projects from New York to Portland, Salt Lake City's downtown is experiencing its biggest boom in decades, officials said.

At the lead is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' $2 billion City Creek Center, a mix of retail and residential development. But downtown's rising is more than just that, Mathis said.

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