Attention Utahns: It's time to put up, or hold, criticism about growth in the Beehive State until the next time officials engage in a statewide, comprehensive planning effort.
Utah is in the middle of an enormous planning effort, and the next one won't be for several years. So, this month Utah residents have the chance to speak up.Any person who has ever complained about traffic, scrutinized officials for land-use decisions or wondered how parks, water and environmental concerns will be addressed during future decades is encouraged to attend a series of community meetings that begin this week.
Envision Utah, the engine for a massive planning effort in Utah, is made up of 100 VIPs from Wasatch Front communities. The group, and its parent organization, the Coalition for Utah's Future, will decide how Utah should develop in coming years.
There are important decisions to make:
How to build neighborhoods so they best fit the needs of residents.
How to situate parks and play areas so green, open spaces are planned along with roads, pavement and buildings.
How to mix business with manufacturing and industrial sites to best suit communities' economic needs and Utahns' quality of life.
Officials have heard stories of success and failure in other parts of the country. They've gathered analysis of what Utah will look like in 50 years, when there will be three residents for every one now living along the Wasatch Front.
Now it's time to talk to the citizens, said Robert Grow, chairman of Envision Utah.
"Our goal is to provide a forum in which residents may play an active role in shaping the future of their community and help preserve the things we value most living here."
Seven Community Option workshops will take place beginning Tuesday. They will be held at the following locations:
- Tuesday, May 12, for Salt Lake County residents, Salt Lake City Library, Lecture Hall, 209 E. 500 South, 7 to 8:30 p.m.
- Wednesday, May 13, for Weber, Box Elder and Morgan residents, Ogden City Council Chambers, 2484 Washington Blvd., Suite 100, Ogden, 7 to 8:30 p.m.
- Thursday, May 14, for Davis residents, Davis County Fairgrounds, Administration Building, 151 S. 1100 West, Farmington, 7 to 8:30 p.m.
- Tuesday, May 19, for Wasatch and Summit residents, Treasure Mountain Middle School, multi-purpose room, 2530 Kearns Blvd., Park City, 7 to 8:30 p.m.
- Wednesday, May 20, for Tooele County residents, Utah State Extension Center, 151 N. Main, Tooele, 7 to 8:30 p.m.
- Thursday, May 21, for residents in Utah and Juab counties, Scera Theater Center, room 101, 745 S. State Street, Orem, 7 to 8:30 p.m.
- Thursday, May 28, for South Salt Lake residents, West Jordan City Council Chambers, 8000 S. Redwood Road, third floor, West Jordan, 7 to 8:30 p.m.
In addition, several hundred selected community representatives will meet from 8 a.m. to noon Tuesday on the 23rd floor of the new American Stores Tower in downtown Salt Lake City. Participants will split into groups of 10 and map out possible options for future growth.
Information on Envision Utah is accessible through its computer home page: (www.envisionutah.