Engineers studying the proposed expansion of a 20-mile section of highway between Logan and I-15 have identified five major environmental concerns with the project.
Tom Twedt, BIO-WEST president, said engineers are looking at how the proposed expansion of the road between Wellsville and Brigham City would affect wetlands near Dry Lake and Mantua, deer migration areas, fish habitat in Box Elder Creek, visual quality and geological concerns.The project would give Cache Valley residents at least four lanes of highway between Logan and I-15.
After taking office as Logan mayor in 1982, Newell Daines said the road expansion was one of the top priorities for his administration. He said it is essential to economic development.
The community has no commuter airline service and only two-lane roads link the area with the interstate highway running to Salt Lake City. This summer, UDOT will complete a project to widen the road from Logan to Wellsville, leaving only the section between Wellsville and Brigham City two lanes.
Twedt said it is possible the existing two-lane highway would be widened to five lanes, and new alignments are being studied for a portion of the 20-mile section through Wellsville Canyon.
Twedt, whose firm is conducting a portion of the highway study, said public meetings are planned for Logan on April 13 and Brigham City the next day to inform residents of the preliminary proposal.
"The meetings are not meant to solicit public comment about specific proposals because alternatives have not yet been identified," Twedt said.
He said the public will have an opportunity to comment later on an environmental analysis. The information will help complete an environmental impact statement, scheduled to be released by March 1989.