Project Name:
2018-2019 Recommendations by ECCC trails working group to EC Metro Township Council

Proposed by/date:
Proposed by EC Metro Township Council to the Emigration Canyon Community Council, May 2018

Project Purpose:
The purpose of this project is develop specific recommended sites for trailhead and trail development within the canyon with regards to managing the increased demand for trails and trail access from residents of Salt Lake and the surrounding environs. In developing the recommendations, the ECCC trails working group will draw on input from the community, UFA, UPD, SL County, SL City and other stakeholders, while adhering to the Emigration Canyon Trails Master Plan of 2007 as much as possible.

Project History/Connection with existing master plan or other project:
An extensive Emigration Canyon Trails Master Plan from 2007 that was developed over a period of 2.5 years with funding from Salt Lake County but never substantially implemented due to funding limitations. The project is to utilize that Trails Master Plan to the maximum extent possible.

Project Status July 2019
Last spring the EC Metro Township Council asked the Emigration Canyon Community Council (ECCC) to review the 2007 Emigration Canyon Trails Master Plan, and recommend those aspects of the plan most feasible for implementation. Much has changed in the canyon since 2007. Many private properties have changed hands. Significant parcels have passed into public or institutional ownership with deeded conservation restrictions, and Salt Lake City has launched a major trails initiative on the east bench.

The review process began last summer with public meetings facilitated by Dan Anderson, a member of ECCC. An ECCC working group was formed to assess trail opportunities and constraints in light of community sentiment and current circumstances. Members include Dan Anderson, Rin Harris, Claire Clark, Mike Jimenez and Bill Tobey, all from the ECCC, and two community representatives: Andy McNeil and Sarah Bennett. Other stakeholders have been consulted, including the Unified Fire Authority, Unified Police Department, Salt Lake County, Salt Lake City, US Forest Service, and Utah Open Lands. This group plans to present its findings to the community council at the August 13th ECCC meeting. Based on these findings, the ECCC will make recommendations to the EC Metro Council in September.

The ECCC’s recommendations will comprise a subset of the trails and facilities proposed in the 2007 plan, chosen for relative feasibility and community priorities. If approved by the township, funding sources and other implementation resources will need to be identified. On behalf of the ECCC, many thanks to all who have contributed and given their time over the past year through community input meetings and numerous working sessions to identify what we hope will be the beginning steps toward trails master plan implementation.

Project Status January 2019
Since the last public trails meeting on November 19th 2018, the ECCC trails working group has been preparing a proposal that applies current community priorities to the development objectives detailed in our 2007 Trails Master Plan. Our assignment from the Metro Township Council was to engage the canyon community, review the unimplemented master plan, and identify some consensus starting points for trail and trailhead construction.

Throughout our public meetings it was obvious that much has changed in the canyon since 2007. Many private properties have changed hands. Significant parcels have passed into public or institutional ownership with deeded conservation restrictions. Unofficial trail builders have been busy, and Salt Lake City launched a major trails initiative on our western border. In a perfect world we would have fully understood the effects of all these changes before we started our public review. In reality, we’re now playing catch-up.

Our original goal was to quickly present draft trails recommendations for public comment and early 2019 delivery to the EC Metro Township Council. It is now obvious that additional investigation is necessary to fully address the new limits, opportunities and current feasibilities that bear on the 2007 Trails Master Plan objectives. As soon as possible, we will return to the community with recommendations that apply priorities to the 2007 Trails Master Plan in the context of a complete and accurate understanding of the current development environment.

Please bear with us while we do the necessary groundwork.

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