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SLCo leaders announce Little Cottonwood Canyon traffic plan recommendation

Posted at 12:31 PM, Sep 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-01 14:35:20-04

SALT LAKE CITY — Salt Lake County leaders released their recommendation about how to improve traffic in Little Cottonwood Canyon Wednesday, and it does not support the $1 billion gondola project.

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Mayor Jenny Wilson, along with other leaders, say after two years of careful consideration, they believe a gondola is not the right thing to do in terms of money and in terms of impact building one would have on this canyon.

They are recommending a more nuanced approach, including enhanced bus service.

“So what we would be looking at is trying to institute tolling and some other mechanisms prior to building the shoulder lane for enhanced bus service during the peak hours," said Helen Peters, the transportation program manager for the county. "And so that is our recommendation at this time.”

“It’s fiscally irresponsible to commit to a billion dollars, a billion dollars, Unless you have tried the less expensive more manageable solutions first let alone the impact on the canyon,” said Wilson.

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This is only the recommendation of Salt Lake County leaders and far from a final solution or resolution. It will be forwarded to the Utah Department of Transportation who will make their plans known next year.

It is crystal clear that those with ski resorts in Little Cottonwood Canyon, in particular officials with Snowbird, remain firmly and enthusiastically behind a gondola.

Resort owners believe the gondola is good for moving people in general, but especially on those powder days when things can be really busy and crowded.