PROVO The 4800 North option for the Mountain View Corridor connecting Salt Lake County to northwestern Utah County is dead.
The Utah Department of Transportation told members of the Mountainland Association of Governments Thursday that the option proposed by Lehi isn't reasonable.
Teri Newell, UDOT project manager, told the association's Metropolitan Planning Organization Regional Planning Committee that after several months of looking into the alternative, they decided it wouldn't meet the needs of the county. UDOT and the Federal Highway Administration looked at whether the road would meet traffic needs, as well as cost, environmental impacts and technical aspects.
"The place at 4800 North wasn't doing everything it needed to to solve east-west issues in north Utah County," she said.
However, one of the main reasons the option was killed related to cost. The 4800 North option, compared to the other options UDOT has proposed, would cost $700 million more to build. The highway administration also has minimum requirements for roads and even with the extra cost, the 4800 North option would barely meet those, Newell said.
"It's something (that's) already costly and it's at minimums that are not desirable to federal highways," she said. "(With) operational, safety, maintenance and cost to it, our conclusion out of this process was that it is not a reasonable alternative."
If they had found it to be a viable alternative, another environmental impact study would have been completed, Newell said.
UDOT has already identified 2100 North as its preferred option; however, the federal agency hasn't decided which option it thinks is best. It will have the final say as to where the corridor will be built.
Lehi submitted the 4800 North proposal in August, and it was included in UDOT's public hearings. Lehi residents and the city's government oppose the 2100 North option because the corridor would then be close to homes and create pollution in the residential areas.
Lehi Mayor Howard Johnson said the city was disappointed in UDOT's finding and believes the alternative option would be cheaper and better for residents. Johnson said the 4800 North alternative would lower travel time and would save residents money in gasoline in the long run. He also said he feels UDOT didn't address a groundwater issue associated with the 2100 North option.
"As a city, we're not pleased with it and we'll try everything we can to work with them," he said.
Newell said UDOT would continue to work with Lehi and clear up and address any further concerns the city has.The 40-mile Mountain View Corridor will run from I-80 in Salt Lake County to either Lehi or Saratoga Springs, depending on which option is chosen, and will connect to I-15.
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