Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson urged the public to protest the Utah Department of Transportation’s decision to proceed with a gondola in Little Cottonwood Canyon during a news conference on Wednesday. In a Wednesday morning email, the agency stated its preference for a gondola; nevertheless, the Legislature will ultimately determine whether or not to fund the $592 million project.
Wilson expressed her satisfaction that UDOT has agreed to use a phased strategy to reduce congestion in the canyons, but she thinks the expensive project may make other issues worse. Before we destroy the canyon and erect 262-foot towers, we first put these answers into action, Wilson added. “I’d want to issue a request to the general public. Please visit the UDOT website. Please submit a report if you share my concerns about the cost and the impact on the canyon. Describe your concerns to them.
Wilson said she was concerned that the agency’s favored design would not lessen traffic but instead push congestion deeper into Cottonwood Heights based on the few time she had to peruse UDOT’s report. She is also concerned that if the weather changes or if resorts like Alta and Snowbird alter their business practices, the gondola will be severely limited.
Wilson claimed, “The gondola is not adaptable; if you install those buildings, they will be there. “Bus systems are. Therefore, I believe that operational concerns and cost may both be attractive to some people. Additionally, many people from both parties have conveyed to me a strong bond they have with the canyon, which I also have.
Since the majority of council members disagree with UDOT’s plan, Wilson said, the Salt Lake County Council is reviewing its options to stop the gondola based on its power over the involved roadways. Wilson doesn’t think the idea has enough support to be funded because there are more urgent needs elsewhere, but they also intend to talk with lawmakers.
“I want to underline that this issue only arises for 15–20 days a year. This level of expense is exorbitant given the 365 days that we have to cherish and enjoy the canyon, according to Wilson. “This goes beyond the mere sentimentality some of us have about this. This is about overall costs as well as making an investment in something that will pay off.