Traffic Committee Takes On Hot Topics

STAC will consider ways to slow traffic on an extended Mud Springs Road and get traffic up the hill to a straightened out Airport Road


Payson’s traffic advisory committee will shake off its summer somnambulism on Wednesday with a packed agenda of hot-button topics.

For instance, the Surface Transportation Advisory Committee (STAC) will put the final touches on one controversy — and open the door to another.

The once frantic, but lately calm, controversy heading into its final stages are the speed humps, striping and traffic circles designed to slow down drivers on Phoenix Street once Mud Springs Road connects to Highway 260.

The possibility that the extension of the street could lure hoards of highway bypassers through quiet residential neighborhoods roiled council meetings last year and played a role in the tempestuous council elections. However, STAC’s efforts to agree on a recommended list of “traffic calming” devices have drawn only a handful of audience members.

On Wednesday, Town Engineer LaRon Garrett will present his latest bundle of traffic-slowing suggestions, mostly involving speed humps and stripes on the roadway.

On the other hand, STAC on Wednesday could open the door to a whole new set of debates when it takes up a discussion of traffic flow into and through the town’s next frontier for development — a 220-acre parcel near the airport recently swapped to private landowners by the Forest Service.

The new landowners have filed for a General Plan Amendment to build a mix of light industrial, residential and apartments on that land. The plan would involve straightening and widening Airport Road. It would also extend up the hillside to Airport Road several streets that now dead-end in quiet residential neighborhoods.

Concerns about the increase in traffic on these extended roads have riled homeowners in several existing neighborhoods.

The Wednesday, Oct. 1 STAC agenda includes discussion of traffic patterns in the land exchange parcel. The meeting begins at 4 p.m. in the Town Hall council chambers.


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