Residents brave the snow to rally against freeway plan for Farmington
"I would like to preserve a rural community, but also just a community," he said. "By putting legacy along this corridor it would encircle western Farmington in freeways, so it makes it basically a circle. We want to see all the highway and transportation stay through the main corridor."
The rural, sleepy nature of west Farmington and its wide open views are what brought many to the area, including Brady and Kristy Crabtree. The couple moved to the area in 2010 and fell in love with its people and its proximity to cities while still feeling remote.
"We just don't want a raised freeway out here in the rural area. It doesn't make sense or seem to fit in at all," Brady Crabtree said. "I didn't want to be one of those people, if it happens back there where we don't want it, that just complains about it without doing anything about it."
"We wanted to show our kids that you can try," Kristy Crabtree said. "This is great. I think a lot of people aren't even from the area, they just care about the birds. People are powerful."
In addition to its threat to the rural landscape, the project would encircle Farmington in freeways and the city would not gain an economic benefit because the proposed on- and off-ramps bypass the city center and the developing Station Park area, Prescott said.
"We have boaters, hunters, bikers, bird lovers, the eagle sanctuary is right here, the Farmginton bay nature preserve, farmers, a pumpkin patch, it's just a way of life. It's our whole way of life and we think that UDOT and the cities should think before they plan things.
But there is another side.
Those in Kaysville think the Glovers Lane option is the obvious choice. Wendi Snell said UDOT's Shepherd Lane option would displace her and her family as it includes the destruction of 10 homes.
"We don't want to say anything against the other road for the Glovers area, because my heart goes out to them as well and I understand where they're coming from. But my home is going to be taken," she said.
"It's not just a freeway that's going to be built next to me or behind me, it's taking my home. I have no idea where I'd go. My kids absolutely love the schools they go to, they love their friends, and everything that we have built in our life was supposed to stay here."
Kaysville Mayor Steve Hiatt said he thinks the need for the freeway is there. He said UDOT has a tough decision to make. But he said top priority should go to homeowners.
"It is a huge impact to anyone's life to say, 'Hey you may enjoy your home, your place of solace, but it might be taken away from you,'" Hiatt said. "It's simply nothing that should be taken lightly. … We support wildlife, we support wetlands. Quite honestly when you compare the differences between the two, the impacts are much the same until you come down to the human aspect and you look at the 10 homes that are being taken."
Gleason said a 100 percent consensus on an option is not likely. But UDOT officials are trying to communicate with the residents of each community and be transparent in their process. He said a decision isn't expected until 2014.
"It's far from a done deal," he said. "We're far from making a final decision."
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