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CONTROLLING GROWTH TOPS W. JORDAN LIST

It was with some trepidation that city officials sent surveys to citizens asking what could be done to improve West Jordan.

"You never know what kind of response you'll get," said Penny Atkinson, assistant city manager. "Sometimes it prompts a lot of nasty comments and anger."But after receiving 100 responses, city officials are not only relieved, they are also quite pleased.

"Overall, the comments were right in line with the direction the city is going. It's satisfying to know that our City Council and mayor are in tune with what constituents want," said Atkinson.

The citizens' suggestions will guide decisions as officials meet Oct. 6 and 7 to develop West Jordan's master plan.

According to the survey, the top concern of citizens is controlling growth and the quality of life.

"I was surprised that many suggested increasing commercial development in West Jordan. We have a vital business community, which contributes to our strong tax base. The business area is primarily located along the 90th South corridor and doesn't interfere with residential areas," said Atkinson.

One woman, who had just moved to West Jordan from New York City, wrote that she was very pleased with the blend of rural and commercial atmospheres in the community. West Jordan has a country feel with city conveniences, she wrote.

Residents feel protective of the undeveloped open spaces and want more parks. "The City Council is adamant about developing parks near new subdivisions wherever it is feasible. We're always trying to purchase land to preserve open spaces," said Atkinson.

Citizens also support the concept of providing a diversity of housing options in West Jordan. Currently, apartments make up about 15 percent of the housing market, and that's where city officials would like to keep it. The master plan provides for a mix of more expensive homes on 1/3-acre lots, affordable homes and apartments, she said.

"We want to send the message that as families grow and mature they can find housing in West Jordan," she said.

The second largest concern is transportation. Citizens want Redwood Road widened to become a four-lane road. And they want the proposed Jordan River Boulevard built, which would provide a more direct route to the 7200 South on-ramp to I-15. Both projects are scheduled for next year but are dependent on government funds, she said.

Many suggested increasing bus lines in West Jordan, and the city is considering expanding routes and hours.

Finally, citizens are concerned about graffiti, which indicates gang activity.

"So far, there hasn't been any violent activity, but we want to prevent any problems," she said.

The city hired two additional police officers in July. "People were very positive in their praise of the police and fire protection."