Many have been actively discussing the changes that were made to Cory Wride Memorial Highway (SR-73) over the weekend. The City did not receive a project update notifying us of plans to open the Pioneer Crossing Extension connection to Cory Wride Memorial Highway and divert traffic there. Understandably, residents have been frustrated by this abrupt transition. There also seems to be some confusion about the design and future plans for this connection, so I’d like to provide some background.
The Pioneer Crossing Extension project was planned in concept many years ago. In 2011, in the early stages of the project, the City sent a letter to UDOT protesting the design plan as having a negative impact on Eagle Mountain residents, specifically related to traveling to and from the Salt Lake Valley, because of the forced diversion from SR-73 onto Pioneer Crossing. The City continued to protest this design plan throughout the process, however no changes have been made. Maps and diagrams of the final project design are posted on the City website, along with contact information for UDOT.
Shortly after I took office, on January 23rd of this year, UDOT held an open house at Westlake High School which I attended and voiced my concerns with the project manager. I scheduled an appointment to speak to the UDOT Region 3 director and voiced my concerns again.
The long-term plan is that Mountain View Corridor will connect 2100 North to Cory Wride Memorial Highway. No state funding has been allocated for this project so it is at least several years out. However, I have been communicating Eagle Mountain’s needs to UDOT, and I will continue to do so. Though I am not thrilled with the realignment as it is today, I do believe the long term vision of what this connection offers will be beneficial.
UDOT will be sending an engineer out to look at the signal timing with the intent to reduce the queuing that commuters are experiencing in the morning and evening hours. I will continue to work with UDOT to improve not only this situation, but our transportation infrastructure as a whole.
With improvements to our transportation options in this area, we are far better off than we have ever been, whether we are traveling north or south to commute to work. I made the trek from Eagle Mountain to the International Center West of SLC International Airport for over six years. During that time, I have seen 2100 North open, Pioneer Crossing open, the widening of Redwood road from two lanes to four all the way out to Bangerter, the widening of SR-73 from two lanes to four, the construction of the intersection at SR-73 and Redwood Road, and the widening of Redwood road From SR-73 to Pony Express. And there are more to come…
Upcoming transportation projects:
A UDOT project to widen Pony Express Parkway in Saratoga Springs from 800 West to Redwood road is slated to begin construction in spring of 2015, with completion by fall of 2015. This project will provide a turn lane into Vista Heights Middle School, as well as a traffic signal at Thunder Blvd. (entrance to Westlake High School).
The MAG Technical Committee and the Regional Planning Committee have voted to approve the funding list for the TIP (Transportation Improvement Program). The City’s Pony Express Parkway project (widening to include a center turn lane and two 5-foot bike lanes from Porter’s Crossing to 800 West in Saratoga) was approved for $3.589 million in funding in federal fiscal year 2016 (beginning October 2015). We feel pretty good about that timeline, as a majority of the projects are scheduled for 2017 or 2018.
We are also working with UDOT on a signal for Sunset Drive & Cory Wride Memorial Highway. The process is very early and we do not yet have an estimated time of completion.