Mountain Accord talks planned in Park City, Summit County
June 2, 2015
Park City leaders on Thursday are expected to address the broad efforts to craft a plan for the future of the Wasatch Mountain region.
Mayor Jack Thomas and the Park City Council are scheduled to debate the Mountain Accord in what is anticipated to be an important meeting as a second phase of the project is considered.
The Mountain Accord involves a group of government entities, not-for-profit organizations and business interests. City Hall and the County Courthouse are two of the government bodies that are participating. The Mountain Accord focuses on issues like transportation, the environment, recreation and the economy.
A concept involving a link between the Park City area and Big Cottonwood Canyon has drawn attention locally. Diane Foster, the Park City manager, said in an interview there is a recommendation against a required environmental study involving a connection of any sort between Park City and Big Cottonwood Canyon.
Other transportation actions mentioned include studying what is known as a rapid bus connection linking Park City and Salt Lake City and studying possible transit upgrades along S.R. 224, S.R. 248 and U.S. 40, which are three critical roads for commuters and others in the Park City area. A statement supporting the continued wintertime closure of Guardsman Pass between Bonanza Flats and Big Cottonwood Canyon is included.
The elected officials could also discuss the possibility of $300,000 in City Hall funding over a three-year period to continue the municipal government’s involvement in the Mountain Accord. If City Hall continues into the second phase, it could leave the Mountain Accord at a later time, the report says.
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The discussion on Thursday is scheduled to start at 4:45 p.m. in the City Council chambers at the Marsac Building. The city manager said a short presentation by staffers will be followed by public input. There will be time set aside for public input about Mountain Accord during at least two additional City Council meetings in June.
The Mountain Accord has drawn attention from some who closely follow Park City issues. Dana Williams, a former mayor of Park City, and Rich Wyman, a longtime activist, are among the people who have provided input at City Hall recently. The Mountain Accord was also the subject of a well-attended gathering at the Eccles Center in February.
Thomas said he is uncertain about the attendance numbers on Thursday since the Mountain Accord will be discussed during a work session instead of a regular meeting. Votes are not cast during work sessions, but the elected officials oftentimes signal their intentions. He said Mountain Accord deserves multiple opportunities for public input. The "community wants clarity as to what the possibilities are," Thomas said.
The Summit County Council is also scheduled to discuss Mountain Accord this week. A 90-minute talk is expected to begin at 2:10 p.m. on Wednesday at the Sheldon Richins Building.
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