Weber County officials say their moratorium on construction below 4,215 feet above sea level will remain in effect unless there is a dramatic downward change in the Great Salt Lake's level.
The moratorium was imposed in July 1986, as the 80-mile-long, 30-mile-wide lake's waters continued to rise to a peak of nearly 4,212 feet.Since then, however, the state's $60 million lake pumping project and unusually dry weather have decreased flooding.
"Our thought is it probably should continue until we have more data. We need to see how the pumps are working and how the weather goes," said Ed Reed, chief county planner.
Current restrictions require a review of any land under the 4,218-foot elevation before a land-use or building permit can be issued. Building also is prohibited on land that has fewer than 20,000 square feet of contiguous area 4,215 feet in elevation or higher.
A few people have approached the planning department to inquire about whether the building restrictions had been lifted, Reed said.
Reed's caution is supported by Peter Behrens, president of Great Salt Lake Mineral & Chemical.
"I think the lake is still 10 feet higher than the historical average," Behrens said.
In 1984, the lake's high waters severely damaged his company's dikes, pond floors, bridges, pump stations and other structures.
"We still haven't recovered from the flood. Hopefully we will in three or four years," Behrens said.