Once again, our town council has refused to listen to the people who live along Phoenix and Mud Springs who oppose the Mud Springs extension. They are inviting all the weekend vacationers to use these streets as a bypass, turning our neighborhoods from peaceful and quiet neighborhoods into traffic-congested, noisy and unsafe streets.
It is apparent that this will happen because Mr. Earl Owens gathered 400 signatures to divert traffic from Bonita and Bentley to Phoenix and Mud Springs. I believe Mr. Owens used the words "to share the traffic burden." The traffic on Bonita will also increase when the vacationers know they can avoid the intersection of 87 and 260 by using Bonita and Bentley for a more direct route to 260. They can avoid the stoplight at Safeway. I do not believe that the 400 people that signed that petition understand that their traffic will increase also. I believe they were unknowingly misled into believing their traffic would decrease, which will probably be just the opposite.
The four members of the council also voted down the appointment of Joanie King to the STAC committee to quiet the voice of reason for long-term planning and to quash any possible opposition to the extension. They want to put someone on the committee who will rubber-stamp their agenda.
Mike Vogel has often said this extension was planned for over 20 years. He did not mention that there was a real bypass also planned around Payson, not through a quiet residential neighborhood. The real bypass will not occur in the foreseeable future. Now all the residents along Phoenix/Mud Springs and Bonita/Bentley/Granite Dells will have to pay the price. One of the speakers in opposition to the extension said, "If you build it, they will come."
The same four council members also voted to spend $42,000 plus another $5,000 to study the roundabout at the Mud Springs and Highway 260 extension. Why would they vote to spend $47,000 of taxpayers' money for the study if they had not already decided they were going to do the extension, come hell or high water? They are Mike Vogel, John Wilson, Su Connell and Tim Fruth.
All the talk about "traffic-calming measures" like speed bumps and "local traffic only" signage is only a smoke screen to enable the council to push through the Mud Springs extension. It is readily apparent they intend to go through with the extension, in spite of the objections of the residents who live along those streets. Our council is not responsive to the people in these neighborhoods. The actions of the council will destroy our neighborhoods by allowing more traffic.
Maybe the town council should spend the $47,000 to hire a company to do a traffic impact study to determine how the additional traffic will affect the residents along those streets (Phoenix/Mud Springs and Bonita/ Bentley/Granite Dells).
The actions of the town council will destroy our neighborhoods by allowing more traffic access. What are the reasons for pushing through the Mud Springs extension?
To make it easier to get to the Frontier Elementary School for the children, the police department and the fire department? There are already road projects that are completed or near completion that will already significantly improve access and safety to the school.
They are the Mud Springs extension to the roundabout on Granite Dells and the St. Philip and Frontier road projects.
I have two questions: Who will benefit by extending Mud Springs to Highway 260? Why is the council so adamant about pushing this project? One of our developers owns property along the extension. Will he gain anything by the extension? I don't know if it will be a benefit to him or not. Only a real estate appraiser can determine that. The Giant gas station will not have cars cutting through their property for a shortcut. Maybe they should pay for the extension?
There are some people who will save a few minutes by avoiding the Safeway stoplight turn to get to Granite Dells. I am one of those because I frequently have to go that way. Is it worth it to spend millions of dollars on an extension of doubtful benefit? Is this our highway to nowhere? Is it worth destroying neighborhoods?