Letters to the editor, Sept. 26-29, 2015
September 28, 2015
Whole Foods approval green-lights traffic jams
First, I do not fault Whole Foods for wanting to move to a new larger facility which is removed from the limitations it has for access, parking, and retail space. What I do find of concern is the lack of vision that Summit County has in approving the project without dealing with the major infrastructure and traffic problems that will occur. A study five years after construction is like saying you are going to put in a fire sprinkler system after a structure has burned down.
Many of us are worried about being environmentally friendly and thinking about reducing traffic jams. However our county continues to approve things that will only make things worse. When the county approves something, they need to require the infrastructure to support the project is built at least at the same time.
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Just imagine the access road between the Wal-Mart and factory store during the peak tourist season, much less the construction period or a major snow storm. There is no way that anyone will be able to go left out of Whole Foods complex. They will have to turn right to get out. The added traffic going right will make the traffic circle at the factory stores a critical choke point as it was not designed for that volume of traffic. How about an 18-wheeler doing that?
What the county should have done was plan to make the road between Whole Foods to Wal-Mart four lanes with a two-lane traffic circle at Whole Foods. The cost of that should be covered by the new development. In addition, the county could have required covered a multi-story parking structure which would reduce the snow removal issues the site is sure to face.
As approved, the project will make the Kimball Junction problems only worse. Trying to fix it after the fact will only cost more and add to the tax burden of Summit County’s residents and businesses.
M. Victor Janulaitis, 15-year local resident
Republicans deserve credit for environmental stewardship
Last week, 11 Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives, led by Representative Chris Gibson of New York, signed a resolution to create economically viable solutions to address climate change. This announcement is an unprecedented step for House Republicans. Yet there was little or no mention of the announcement in most news media. These individuals should be applauded for their courage. I hope our Utah representatives similarly appreciate that it is a conservative principle to "protect, conserve, and be good stewards of our environment."
Salt Lake City
Cougars need more protection not human predators
On Aug. 27, the Salt Lake Tribune published the Utah Wildlife Board’s (UWB) decision to kill even more cougars (492) starting in 2016. The true numbers of those elusive animals are unknown but "estimated" at 2,500 to 4,500. This "estimate" speaks volumes as to any reasonable accuracy. The best science available calls for a 25 percent decrease in cougar permits, (see the Trib article). UWB no doubt is caving to pressure from groups wanting more cougar trophies.
Notably, the UWB raised deer permits by 2,000. Cougars obviously aren’t blamed for killing too many deer, hence cougar numbers are likely lower. The UWB’s caving to trophy hunting pressure is despicable. At this rate cougars may vanish from Utah as has happened in other states.
I started a petition at "Care 2" in desperation to try and help those regal animals. Thus far over 25,000 have signed the petition to be delivered to the powers be. Please read the Trib article, help save Utah’s cougars from extinction. Females killed will leave kittens to starve, mature males experienced in hunting proper prey will be killed and the societal structure will be destroyed, causing juveniles to turn on livestock and pets.
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Clear blue skies seem to belong to Park City’s past. I have spent this hiking season in Park City’s mountains in search of a postcard picture of this beautiful place, but have not once seen pristine skies. Yesterday, while perusing the summer/fall edition of Park City Magazine, I noticed the photos there also show scenery shrouded in haze. While smoke from fires near and far is partially to blame, I observed Park City skies were also hazy last winter, and I’m guessing they will be much hazier this winter when the biggest ski area in the USA brings hundreds of thousands more cars to this little canyon.
Meanwhile, I’m not seeing any news about the local air pollution, which will not only melt what little snow the warming atmosphere can produce, but will sicken our citizenry. Getting more tourists into mass transit with low cost and convenient airport shuttles, and expanding bus service for tourists and locals while making parking expensive for everyone, will ultimately cost Park City less than letting it choke to death on auto fumes.
Clean air should be city’s council top priority.
Beverly Hurwitz MD
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