Some of the local business community and their customers are concerned about the impact of a bypass to relieve local traffic congestion on Payson businesses.
Because Payson has a limited amount of land available for commercial use, the risks and expense of adjusting to a bypass of businesses on South 87 and 260 will increase substantially with the passage of time.
The time required to obtain a bypass could be as much as 10 years from the start of the process to the completion of a functioning bypass. The process involves time required to obtain an appropriation, engineering, land acquisition, performance of construction contract and inspection, corrections and acceptance of the work.
During a 10-year period of time, the existing portions of 87 and 260 to be bypassed could become more like a parking lot than a highway. People concerned about ingress and egress to the affected portions of 87 and 260 in a timely manner could take their business elsewhere, regardless of whether they were local residents or people passing through Payson. Some of these business shifts would be permanent.
Loss of business resulting from traffic congestion on 87, south of 260 and on 260 would depress real estate prices on those parts of the highways within Payson.
An exception to this trend would be businesses located in shopping centers with large parking lots that were accessible because of traffic signals on 87 or 260.
Because Payson is surrounded by land owned by the federal government, growth opportunities are limited. A limited supply of commercial property would mean that businesses seeking to relocate from 260 or 87 would have to pay higher prices for the land. Businesses that had long-term leases would have to make suitable payments to terminate the lease prematurely.
With inflation averaging 3% per year, businesses constructing new facilities would face increased construction costs. These are some of the major risks, that business trapped on 87 or 260 in a revenue losing position, because of lack of access, are likely to face.
Jim Winter, Payson