BOUNTIFUL, Utah (ABC4) – On Wednesday night, the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) is hosting an open house in Bountiful to hear from the community about the possibility of improvements along I-15. UDOT spent a year studying the corridor between Farmington and Salt Lake City and has come up with several alternatives to improve congestion in the area. Residents are also encouraged to voice their concerns, thoughts and ideas online.
Bumper-to-bumper traffic is a phrase that can make commuters tremble. The I-15 corridor from Salt Lake to Farmington can get especially congested. As Utah’s population continues to grow, it may become even worse.
“We’ve come up with some ideas to really think about all users, not just moving cars but moving people, and thinking about walking, biking and those who scoot,” Tiffany Pocock told ABC4. Pocock is the project manager for UDOT.
She explained that the study looking at the corridor was done to look at alternative infrastructure to what is currently in place. She said the goal is to improve life by “moving goods and services on I-15 efficiently, connecting communities at the interchanges and other crossings as well.”
The possible solutions are extensive. In short, they include adding lanes on the highway as well as other streets, adding pedestrian underpasses, updating interchanges along the corridor and adding additional lanes for pedestrians.
No decision has been made yet and some community members are concerned about what the future could hold.
“I see this as an environmental justice issue,” Shelby Stults told ABC4. Stults lives in the Rose Park area, and is also part of Sweet Streets Salt Lake City.
“The western side, historically, has always experienced worse air quality and less investment from the city and state,” she stated. She’s worried that expanding the interstate will only further the divide between east and west Salt Lake City. She is also worried that it will just encourage the growth of traffic.
UDOT is asking residents, like Stults, to voice any concerns and possible solutions they may have. Pocock stated, “We really welcome some feedback on the ideas that we’re putting forward, so come and visit our website.”
Stults told ABC4 she is hopeful that UDOT will take into consideration the concerns she and others have. She said, “UDOT can’t greenwash a highway expansion by adding bike lanes and pedestrian overpasses.”
Wednesday night’s event will be Open House at South Davis Recreation Center, 5-7 p.m., located at 550 North 200 West, Bountiful.