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Sandy Journal

Active transportation plan coming to Sandy and Draper

Apr 13, 2020 02:19PM ● By Stephanie DeGraw

Bear Canyon Bridge in Draper is a part of the active transportation plan for Sandy and Draper.

By Stephanie DeGraw | [email protected]

More opportunities for active transportation, like biking, walking and horseback riding, are coming to Sandy and Draper. Residents can submit input online to help develop the new plan for a network of paths.

"The biggest challenge Sandy sees is gaps in street improvements due to properties outside of its jurisdiction or areas that have been annexed into Sandy without these improvements," Britney Ward, transportation engineer, said. "The amount of missing infrastructure and right of way needed to install improvements such as sidewalks and bikeways is much costlier than our current budgets can feasibly manage."

Parametrix and Avenue Consultants lead the Sandy/Draper Active Transportation Plan. They hope to have recommendations completed by the fall of 2020.

The plan will connect along the shared city boundary and will address needs specific to each community. It will assess the current conditions, performance, needs and public priorities to establish better options for residents to get around safely via walking, biking, scooters, equestrian trails and public transportation. 

"The active transportation plan (ATP) will be used as a compass for future development, identify needed projects, support project funding applications, and will become a part of this year's transportation master plan update," Ward said.

Sandy City already has bicycle infrastructure and systems in place. There are also transit stations, trails, equestrian trails, shared mobility devices and bus routes. Also, a plan is in place to connect the Sandy Civic Center Light Rail Station to South Jordan FrontRunner.

"Sandy City Bike Committee's current mission is to increase bicycle use in Sandy," Ward said. "Since the adopted update of the trails master plan to include bike-ways, I am excited to continue the work of creating Sandy's first active transportation plan."

Shortly after Sandy Cities Bike Committee formed, it recognized that a bike and active transportation plan was needed before additional infrastructure could be built. Through the committee's research of local entities, groups and programs available, a funding source was found that would be awarded to Sandy and Draper Cities to complete their first active transportation plan. The bike committee has about 10 members consisting of city staff from different departments, Ward said.

Public feedback, for the most part, has been positive about efforts to ease the accessibility for current and future users of the paths. Approximately 70% of the 1,000 respondents said that it's very or vital to have bicycle and pedestrian facilities in their community. Some of the survey respondents’ quotes include:

"Dimple Dell Road needs a bike trail for walkers and joggers and bikers along one side of the road for safety."

"10600 South is particularly bad with no shoulder for cyclists in many places."

"Overall, Sandy has pretty decent sidewalks and wide shoulders. I commute to work 18 miles to work downtown about once per week, and I use 700 /900 East."

Draper City desires to have better connectivity at the border of surrounding cities and bridge the gap between cities. The study also will provide more funding resources such as grants the towns can apply for, according to Eric Lundell, Draper engineer.

"We do have biking and horse-riding paths throughout Draper. They vary in completeness," Lundell said. "Draper Parks and Recreation typically plans for, constructs and maintains all trails or paths that are not part of a roadway. The engineering department typically plans for, constructs and maintains all bike lanes that are part of a roadway."

The three top challenges for Draper include:

1) The I-15 barrier: The only locations pedestrians, bikers and vehicles can cross the freeway are at the existing interchanges (14600 South, Bangerter Highway, 12300 South and 11400 South). These interchanges increase traffic congestion and conflicts with pedestrians and motor vehicles.

2) Gaps in the existing trails and paths. There are areas where Draper has not completed connections on trails, paths and routes. 

3) Funding and Right of Way: Draper has to work within a budget. Because of the Growth of Utah Right of Way, costs are increasing as well as contractor costs.

Lundell said the Draper community feedback has been positive from the pop-up event during the tree-lighting ceremony. "The feedback was good. Everyone would like to see improvements in our connectivity," he said.

For additional details, see ActiveSandyDraper.com and coming soonwww.sandynow.com/in-the-know/fact-briefs (click on Bike Committee).

 

To take the survey visit http://avenuecon.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=4abd959071c74b3095c750930c949684.