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Mass-transit corridor needed

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The Legacy Highway is a regional and far-reaching decision that affects more than just the Farmington-Davis County area.

If Farmington is the northern "bottleneck" of the Salt Lake Valley, then Bluffdale is the southern "bottleneck."

The debate in Davis County will soon become the debate in Bluffdale.

Because we are a corridor community, we encourage regional planning of this "highway." Transportation corridors need to be well-planned and maximized. More roads just encourage people to jump in their cars (one person per SUV) and make more trips. Studies have clearly shown that highways very quickly fill up and that mass-transit corridors are narrower, move more people, with less air pollution, using less of our limited oil reserves, and are more cost-effective overall for all of us.

Bluffdale has been characterized as a "one-acre only" community. Though we value our one-acre lots and love our horses, though we see one-acre density as a way to preserve natural areas along the Jordan River and the foothills, we also see the wisdom in walkable communities in certain areas of our city and see that these higher density areas are best planned along mass-transit corridors. We envision a mass-transit hub here. I-15 meets the railroad, the Jordan River Parkway, the Bonneville Shoreline trail. Camp Williams Highway meets the Bangerter Highway and the proposed Legacy Highway (we are currently working with developers to reserve this corridor). Imagine what could happen if this highway were instead a mass-transit corridor? All this within our small community where major power, gas and water corridors meet up with all of the Salt Lake Valley's major irrigation canals and the Jordan River.

Isn't there a kinder vision of this valley that respects both the transportation needs of our population and the natural environment and landscapes? A vision that could better provide for current and future transportation? Isn't the west side of the Salt Lake Valley deserving of a mass-transit corridor? The winter inversions obscure our view of this amazing Wasatch Front. Will the automobile also obscure our view of the value of regional planning for the future?

Colleen Bliss

Bluffdale City Council member