The state’s Prison Relocation Authority Committee has endorsed the idea of moving Utah’s main state prison away from Draper, and that's something the business community there would like to see.
Bill Rappleye, the head of Draper's Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Draper City Council, thinks that's a great idea. He says it would allow the kind of high-tech businesses that have been locating in Utah County to come into his city.
“They actually compete for the employees, and it makes sense for something like that to develop there,” Rappleye tells KUER. “And, of course, you need some sort of housing if you’re bringing in, say, 2,000 or 5,000 jobs to that area, you’ll need some sort of housing for those folks.”
The west side of Draper also has access to the new FrontRunner commuter rail system, and Rappleye says that could help spur new housing developments on the land where the prison now stands. Critics have pointed out that the land isn't worth as much as it would cost to build a new prison, perhaps as much as $475 million. No location for a new prison has been decided, though Juab, Tooele and Box Elder counties have been mentioned.