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CWC Commissioner's Mountain Transportation Summit - Shared screen with speaker view
Monica Zoltanski
25:06
Good morning. How many people are attending?
Jeff Silvestrini, Millcreek
25:44
110 people are on the zoom
Gay Lynn Bennion
38:27
Good morning. Ralph Becker mentioned there are about 100 of us attending virtually.
Jeff Silvestrini, Millcreek
39:30
The zoom toolbar says 121 attendees currently
Mike Peterson, Cottonwood Heights
41:28
FYI, I will be needing to leave the summit at 11:45. Appreciate your understanding.
Ralph Becker
43:26
Brian, if you have not, you may want to look at the Evaluation Criteria and Matrix that has been developed by CWC to consider an effective Mountain Transportation System. It includes the elements you are describing.
Ralph Becker
45:37
Here is a link to the MTS work of CWC: https://cwc.utah.gov/transportation/
Blake Perez
53:08
https://littlecottonwoodeis.udot.utah.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/9234_45_LCC_Alternative_Factsheets_Bus_11_20_2020_FIN.pdf
Jeff Silvestrini, Millcreek
53:12
How tall would Gondola towers be? Is it correct that they could be up to 280 feet?
Ralph Becker
54:02
Correct on tower heights, though an alternative is being developed that could lower tower heights.
Platrick Shea
56:27
Lindsey, Would you put up the link Blake is talking about?
Steve Van Maren
56:35
Sandy Transportation Plan: https://sandyutah.legistar.com/View.ashx?M=F&ID=9181872&GUID=C1C0C212-DFA5-4326-A985-4E0EF203C19F
Blake Perez
56:57
https://littlecottonwoodeis.udot.utah.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/9234_45_LCC_Alternative_Factsheets_Bus_PPSL_11_20_2020_FIN.pdf
Blake Perez
57:11
https://littlecottonwoodeis.udot.utah.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/9234_45_LCC_Alternative_Factsheets_Cog_Rail_11_20_2020_FIN.pdf
Nanci Bockelie
57:18
In the bus alternative, have you considered banning private cars except for permitted cars (similar to the way the dog permits work now -- property owners, emergency and other employees could drive, not the general public). This would remove the need for special bus lanes in the cayon, and remove the congestion that now exists.
Marci Houseman, Sandy
57:50
Thank you Steve!
Nanci Bockelie
58:28
The bus alternative should also include an in-canyon local that stops at the power house, Lisa Falls, Tanner's Flat, White Pine, etc.
Blake Perez
58:53
https://littlecottonwoodeis.udot.utah.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/9234_45_LCC_Alternative_Factsheets_Gondola_11_20_2020_FIN.pdf
Ralph Becker
59:10
The UDOT EIS does not include banning cars; they are looking to reduce traffic congestion by 30% to achieve a LOS D. The CWC is evaluating a significantly greater reduction in cars/vehicles for a successful MTS.
Mike Peterson, Cottonwood Heights
59:25
Blake, do you want to share costs associated with each alternative?
Ralph Becker
01:00:01
The capital costs are on the sheets Blake is putting up.
Nate Furman
01:02:02
Hi all--I didn't hear any thing about using La Caille (sp) with the Gondola...or did I miss it?
Blake Perez
01:02:24
https://littlecottonwoodeis.udot.utah.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/9234_45_LCC_Alternative_Factsheets_Gondola_La_Caille_11_20_2020_FIN.pdf
Nanci Bockelie
01:02:48
Problems with non-bus options: cost, longer travel time. Also, the gondola from the LCC PNR has other issues. That PNR is very small, and enlarging it or putting a multi-story building in it will have effects far down the valley. Also, not having a summer option, not having in-canyon stops really limits the usefulness of the options. Many people use the entire canyon and parking is an issue throughout the canyon.
Dave Fields
01:03:38
The travel time presented by Doppelmayr was 37 minutes from LaCaille to Alta. Do we know why there is a difference?
Blake Perez
01:04:07
https://littlecottonwoodeis.udot.utah.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/9234_45_LCC_Alternative_Factsheets_Avalanche_Mitigation_11_20_2020_FIN.pdf
Antony Watson
01:05:19
If the Gondola is chosen, I would highly suggest consideration of summer and fall weekend operations for a reasonable fee if it could cover costs. People would love to just go for a ride and enjoy the views I am sure.
Ralph Becker
01:09:51
Good questions, Nancy. Much of this information you request has been developed as either part of the UDOT EIS or the CWC MTS. Travel times are identified in the UDOT EIS and CWC is considering some other information. You have seen the estimate by Doppelmayr in the chat. The rail estimate has considerable variablility between UDOT and Stadler, a rail developer. UDOT indicates 46 minutes; Stadler suggests 19 minutes. For some of the other questions, we will try to get back to you when there is a little more time. The information developed by UDOT and CWC is available on the websites. But, I should note that CWC has been seeking and getting more refinements of many aspects of the alternatives. We will update the information on the website as soon as we have collected it and can put that information up.
Lindsey Nielsen
01:10:46
Hi there Wayne. I see that you have your hand raised. We are not taking verbal questions from non-panelists during this Summit, however, you are welcome to type a question into this chat box, or into the Q/A, which I see you've already done. Thank you for your engagement.
Wayne Wickizer
01:11:19
Ooops!
Ralph Becker
01:12:03
While UDOT is looking at a winter-only option, CWC and the transit providers are providing information about summer, year-round service. That is an objective for CWC in its evaluation of the best transportation solution.
Daniel Fale
01:16:19
Not sure if you have gone over estimated consumer cost for utilizing these services: Bus vs Rail vs Gondola etc. Do you have an estimate of those costs?
Nanci Bockelie
01:16:39
no sound
John Knoblock
01:18:04
The scores of the matrix can be changed just by varying the number of items in the various categories or by weighting the scores as Marci said.
Ralph Becker
01:18:16
We do not have an estimate of a user cost for this system. That user cost would depend on a variety of policy decisions, including public-private partnership participation, public subsidy, variable time and local v. non-local costing, tolling, etc.
Nanci Bockelie
01:25:50
Ban public driving -- this would eliminate the need for parking. Would free up space at ski areas for other uses. Any new transportation system that costs millions or billions of dollars and does not take cars out of the canyons will ultimately fail.
Wayne Wickizer
01:36:39
The discussion of "Rail" transportation options is encouraging. Preservation of natural resources along the transportation corridors is also encouraging. Have there been discussions regarding a "Multiple Use ... Super Tunnel" system?
Leslie Hugo
01:38:09
I would like to see a look at smaller (fuel efficient/electric) bus hubs centered around existing hotel/restaurant areas, for example near 10600 & 1-15, and the area near 6200 S & 215.
Kim Rhodes
01:39:31
Under the Mountain Accord, weren't you also charged with serving all user groups of LCC?
Nanci Bockelie
01:39:32
The All Bus - Only Bus option would get people out of their cars, less cost, less time in the journey, shorter time to make it operable. Ban cars, have dedicated ski are and in-canyon busses, and lots of parking at 94th PNR and eventually at the Gravel pit PNR.
Brian Hutchinson
01:42:13
That is no explanation of how a suggested 30%, 50% , 99% or other car replacement scheme be executed (regulated, metered, enforced). This component is deceptive
Kim Rhodes
01:45:14
I'm sorry, but I have to disagree with Mr. Becker. The amount of dispersed recreation in LCC is comparable to BCC.
carolyn Keigley
01:46:08
This year has given us a picture of the immediate safety problem in Big Cottonwood Canyon due to congestion. This needs to be addressed now since solutions take so long
Jeff Silvestrini, Millcreek
01:46:50
1) I thought there may be compatibility issues between train sets that would require a change of trains in any wevent?What, if anything have we learned about the noise impacts of these alternatives
Lisa Sun
01:47:02
on which alignment (north or south)?
Lisa Sun
01:47:42
South alignment is devastating to the historic sites
Kim Rhodes
01:48:14
Will there be mid stops with this electric south alignment? to serve others not going to Alta and Snowbird?
Nanci Bockelie
01:48:21
To Carolyn and panelists: The All Bus Only Bus idea would solve this problem. This could be up and running quickly, with full car ban and parking garages built at existing PNRs in the valley within a year or possibly less.
Wayne Wickizer
01:48:24
Was that an answer to my question about the "Super Tunnel"?
Marci Houseman, Sandy
01:48:32
I agree Mayor Silvestrini. The quotes shared in our rail document indicate that transfers will still be needed: The system is designed to be able to run the train from the airport throughdowntown, all the way down 9400 South to the ski resorts. If the market is there, the system isdesigned to have a one-seat ride from any of those locations. That’s based on market, demand,and use. It’s inevitable that you’ll have a transfer – they’re typically cross-platform transfers.They’re intended to be time-transfers to reduce the amount of time waiting.”
Lisa Sun
01:48:53
The mayor's question was not answered re whether the train as proposed by staff ca be on the north alignment?
Laura Briefer, Salt Lake City
01:48:55
It's important to note that Stadler's has a concept of a further south alignment that would require a wilderness adjustment.
Evan Tobin
01:49:18
you talk about tolling but never discuss pricing for cars or bus or train. how come none of the tunneling options such as Elon Musk technology is building other cities is considered for “in/below mountain transi”
Nate Furman
01:49:49
Is the alignment of Stadler's new rail viewable anywhere? It sounds like it is very different than the one that is on the UDOT website. Thank you.
Lisa Sun
01:51:20
The Quarry trail was already moved once in 2004 or 2005 to accommodate a parking ;lot. Now do we block the trailhead and run right through the historic quarry and town of Wasatch and right along the creek
Lisa Sun
01:52:33
Further south runs right through sites in Wasatch Resort through houses owned by Brigham Young, Wilford Woodruff, etc.
Lindsey Nielsen
01:52:46
Hi there Cheryl. I see that you have your hand raised. We are not taking verbal questions from non-panelists during this Summit, however, you are welcome to type a question into this chat box, or into the Q/A. Thank you for your engagement.
Laura Briefer, Salt Lake City
01:54:48
I don't think the additional southern rail alignment has been shared widely yet. Also, for clarification, I am not promoting that, just felt that people may have been talking about different alignments without recognizing it.
John Knoblock
01:55:26
A concern on a train with 3000+ people per hour capacity is that you would have hundreds of people clustered to load a train, versus a continuous loading gondola system avoiding that congestion.
Lisa Sun
01:56:43
This area is where over 90,000 exactly cut stones were quarried over 40 years. It is the most historic canyon in Utah with sawmills, quarries (Temple, Capitol building), mining, powered generation, skiing, and more. Who is looking at protecting and sharing this history? The rail system is a real threat to this history.
Wayne Wickizer
01:57:21
Would someone please just say the word "Tunnel"? Have there been discussions regarding the subsurface potential of a "Multiple Use ... Multi Purpose" Super Tunnel?
Nanci Bockelie
01:58:00
Wayne, can you explain where the tunnel would be?
Pitt Grewe
02:01:47
Would a rail line prohibit access to trails and climbing areas? I am sure there is a safety concern with people crossing rails on foot? Or is this not a concern by rail companies?
Kim Rhodes
02:03:40
Adding to the above question, would a rail line take away from access to trails and climbing areas?
Wayne Wickizer
02:04:44
Yes ... the valley portal would be in the Draper area with the main tunnel projecting into the Greater Park City mining district under Park City's portal. There would be feeder tunnels from the ski areas into the main tunnel. That's the bare bones, but a more detailed, one over the World summary has been floating around for years ... even in the media. Leon Hansen (Dec) is the father of the concept and I am in possession of his briefing and talking points. We have built these projects in the USA. The Swiss have done so with two similar tunnels in the last decade. I know that Utah's legislators were caught "sneaking" into Switzerland for a "looksee" several years ago. The concept is viable and the thinking is "forward" rather than "patchwork."
Nate Furman
02:04:46
Pitt, the SLCA shares those concerns, as well as the potential elimination of climbing and hiking resources.
Lisa Sun
02:04:51
The problem with EIS boundaries is they can focus attention on too small an area and come to a suboptimal solution. This proposed solution is about 2 billion capital cost, which is more than all the capital cost of Utah's rail system to date. Ask: "If we gave UTA 2 billion dollars, how would it be best spent to serve all Utahns, particularly those who need it most?"
Ralph Becker
02:04:54
We will share the information about a different alignment and other features as soon as we have it in our hands. The information we realize is relatively new and evolving. CWC endeavors to be open and transparent, as reflected in this discussion. We invite everyone interested to stay abreast of the CWC website, where all information developed and discussions around transportation have been posted.
Aaron Dekeyzer
02:05:18
Mayor Wilson, this is so reassuring to hear. Capacity is a prima facie issue that should have been addressed long ago. Thank you!
Chris Adams
02:05:18
Wasatch BC Alliance shares the same concerns about access for dispersed uses with a rail option.
Leslie Hugo
02:06:06
As a Sandy resident, thank you Mayor Wilson for addressing all our concerns!!!!!!
ron johnson
02:06:22
I have heard nothing concerning the impacts on the future of the Wasatch caused by climate change. There may not be any need for any of these "transportation solutions" because there will be no skiing, maybe extremely limited human access to these critical watersheds at some point.
Taylor Dankmyer
02:10:01
I strongly agree with Mayor's Wilson and Mendenhall, and have made similar comments in my public comments to CWC and UDOT. Thank you to both mayors.
Taylor Dankmyer
02:10:14
I strongly agree with Mayor's Wilson and Mendenhall, and have made similar comments in my public comments to CWC and UDOT. Thank you to both mayors.
Kim Rhodes
02:14:21
Mayor Sondak wins the gold medal for being the voice of reason at today's meeting.
Lisa Sun
02:14:24
I strongly agree with Mayor Wilson and Mayor Mendenhall’s comments, as well. We need to think much more carefully about the environmental costs of massive infrastructure building in the canyon, as well as the trade-offs of spending our limited transportation/publiic transport dollars on getting people up the canyon (without a capacity limit) rather than enhancing public transit all over the Wasatch Front to help families access affordable housing and jobs.
ron johnson
02:17:47
Why spend 100s of millions - billions of public money to benefit the super wealthy owners of Alta and Snowbird ski resorts? Because they have the UT legislature in their pocket. UDOT already spends big bucks to maintain LCC and BCC for the resorts' benefit. Privatize the profits, publicize the costs/losses. Destroy the canyons just for the big money to the few.
Kim Rhodes
02:19:32
The ROI to the climbing community, and many other dispersed user groups, would be loss of access. Seems fair.
Nanci Bockelie
02:20:20
Ron, exactly why the resorts should pay for a large part of an new All Bus Only Bus system. They will benefit from it as it will free up their parking lots for other uses, limit the need for parking attendants, etc. And a Bus system will allow access to all in-canyon points. we cannot leave those to private cars or strip them out completely.
Teresa Crockett
02:20:40
I appreciate the comments regarding the long-term health of the Wasatch, and protecting the environment, drinking water and quality of life.
Constance Marshall
02:20:49
This conversation happening now is critical for all of us to listen to, ponder, then somehow plan what's next. These conversations are going on in all of our friends and family living rooms.
Brian Hutchinson
02:26:42
Near Term: Tolling on all canyons. UP-canyon: Bus-first (only) from daily openings 6AM - 11AM. DOWN-Canyon: Bus first (only) from 2:30-4 pm
Mark Gessel
02:26:46
Great idea to do what we can truly afford.
Megan Sieverts
02:27:18
I appreciate Ron Johnson’s comment.
Brian Hutchinson
02:27:31
Electric buses
Kim Rhodes
02:27:44
we don't want to be looking back in 20 years and saying "what have we done?"
Megan Sieverts
02:28:44
I agree with Kim Rhodes.
ron johnson
02:28:49
It's not a "congestion" problem, or a "transportation" problem, it's a problem of a broken political system in UT where the few enrich the few at the expense of everybody else. The concept of overuse of the canyons is not even part of the equation.
Teresa Crockett
02:28:50
Buses can be natural gas/electric and are much cleaner than the equivalent in cars. If we institute preferences for buses and tolls for cars, we can significantly ease congestion.
Platrick Shea
02:33:08
There are excellent, cost effective filters that takes out the salt. this concern is an engineering question.
Megan Sieverts
02:34:24
Yes to Teresa and Ron.
Wayne Wickizer
02:35:04
This short, final bit is coming from a person who has been tracking corruption in Utah's government for decades. It is very likely that the Tunnel concept is in planning stages that are closely "held" by Utah's political insiders. Said "holding" to be continued until such time that those insiders have firmly established themselves in income streams from "Silicon Slopes," the transportation corridor from Brigham City to Provo and beyond, the Airport Expansion, the Prison Move, the hotly contested economic zone west of the airport ... who knows what it will eventually be named.
BC Bawden
02:35:08
Instead of salts, could we use alternatives like potassium and/or calcium magnesium acetates in the canyons to protect wells from salts?
Megan Sieverts
02:36:02
There have not been congestion issues in the canyon this year because resorts have been forced to regulate and cut back on parking. We do not need a large infrastructure that will soon be outdated to help the problem. Electric busses are for some reason never discussed.
John Knoblock
02:36:16
When the road is slippery, visibility is impaired, or there is an accident, road based transportation in LCC is a disaster.
Platrick Shea
02:40:50
Something Laura Briefer knows and others may not know. Prof. Kip Solomon Hydrology/Geology estimates there are in volume 12 Lake Powells in Salt Lake Valley. We need to wake up and measure the actual volume and quality of this ground water, sooner rather than later.
Megan Sieverts
02:41:11
There will always be dangers going up a snowy canyon. We don’t need to compromise other recreation and the watershed with a rail or gondola.
ron johnson
02:41:50
Is Stadler/Snowbird going to take the key govt officials on another secret trip to Switzerland on their big private jets to get them clear on the trains?
BC Bawden
02:41:54
How many days a year is there a winter traffic concern in LCC?
Kim Rhodes
02:42:15
I don't use the ski resorts. I know a lot of people that don't use the ski resorts. so, maybe we should consider other canyon users?
Megan Sieverts
02:42:48
Have Ralph Becker’s meetings with the Swiss Rail company been made public?
ron johnson
02:42:54
I'm a skier, I want my powder. WAAAAAAAA!
Platrick Shea
02:43:49
A capacity study is not just a social science, but one that requires basic verifable science.
Ralph Becker
02:44:46
I have had ongoing discussions with people and experts of all views and expertise, private and public. They are part of a staff's job to collect and get information and share it. As materials are prepared, we will always make it available. And, I am happy to speak to anyone, as is the rest of the staff.
Lisa Sun
02:44:58
Thank you to all those spending so much time and energy on this issue.
Chris Balun
02:48:02
This is so sad and frustrating to hear this board asking basic questions that should have been answered a long time ago.
Nanci Bockelie
02:49:15
Chris is correct. Why did a "solution" come up when we have thought so little about critical issues?
Ralph Becker
02:49:49
Thank you all for taking so much of your time today. As we have often said, if this was easy, decisions would have been made 30+ years ago.
Cathy Spuck
02:50:05
I appreciate and agree with the concerns for water quality and canyon capacity. Cleaner buses, reservations, and tolls for a short term solution.Safely full car = toll reduction. I'm grateful for the civil dialogue and input from so many. I
Brian Hutchinson
02:50:40
That decision matrix needs significant retooling. The board should assign a wieghting structure
Ralph Becker
02:51:06
A note re: Visitor Use Study. The CWC Board is scheduled to take up approval of a contract to initiate that work at its meeting on 4/5.
Kim Rhodes
02:51:14
Out of curiosity, I would like to know how each commissioner would rank the transportation options with all of the information they have at this point. Top 3.
DONALD EMERSON
02:52:23
There seems to be a consensus here - not unanimity, but a lot of agreement on the bus solution.
Ralph Becker
02:53:15
There is weighting on the Evaluation Matrix. The Commission agreed on a prioritization last year. It is reflected in Column D on the matrix.
Chris Adams
02:53:55
Does the visitor use study look at mobile device date showing where users are coming from and what are the peak travel times?
DONALD EMERSON
02:54:07
Might there also be consensus on pricing?
Wayne Wickizer
02:54:39
The "patchwork" approach will be a revenue generator indeed. However, the problems discussed today will not go away but intensify as the State continues to grow. When are we going to start "flying ahead of our airplane" in Utah? Where are the pioneers who built the Golden Gate, Grand Coulee, (sp) and other depression era projects?
ron johnson
03:00:04
A giant Hoover Dam at the mouth of LCC and a mega Golden Gate Bridge from the airport to Park City?
Cathy Spuck
03:02:03
There have been congestion issues several miles down 9400 S on many Saturdays. I'm not a skier, but I have had to backtrack to head south to 11400 to get to Wasatch Blvd. to get to a morning obligation near 9400 S. This extra driving on days with inversions. How many of those cars backed up are idling their engines to heat their cars, adding to the pollution. The backups also delay the access for emergency vehicles to neighborhoods and the canyon. That part of 9400 S only has one lane in each direction.
Wayne Wickizer
03:02:25
No ... just the guts to take on a project of that monument.
Nanci Bockelie
03:02:51
Any solution must address in-canyon uses and barring private cars except for permitted cars, through an electronic gate at the bottom of the canyon perhaps. If we don't address these issues, the concerns will remain.
Megan Sieverts
03:03:09
Wayne aren’t you monetarily invested in this? I have
Leslie Hugo
03:03:12
And the foresight and ingenuity
Megan Sieverts
03:03:28
some of your comments from other meetings.
ron johnson
03:04:25
Just limit the daily capacity in the canyons to the current transportation system. "Problem" solved.
Brian Hutchinson
03:04:40
Why are people stuck on serving a Bimodal visitor model? The National Forests in which the resorts operate cannot sustain such visitor crowd impacts. Need to distribute visitor traffic
Wayne Wickizer
03:04:41
I'm 84 years old on a fixed income without any monetary interests in this other than to ensure my grandchildren aren't trying to solve this problem decades from now.
Aaron Dekeyzer
03:05:00
Since many of you agree that cars need to come off roads, I hope you will advocate that the legislature shift funding from UDOT to UTA
ron johnson
03:05:51
Since when does the legislature do what We The People want?
Chris Balun
03:06:30
I would encourage all members of the board to use the canyon tomorrow during a weekend storm day at peak time to get a reminder of the issues here and now. I get the impression that some of you are very nieve to the issues at hand.
Nanci Bockelie
03:07:15
Chris, and also any weekend in the summer. Even weekdays this past year saw parking lots filled by 8 a.m. at key hiking spots.
Laura Briefer, Salt Lake City
03:08:34
I would like to thank Ralph and the CWC staff for their work and thoughtfulness, as well as all of the Commissioners for a frank discussion.
Carlton Christensen, UTA
03:09:10
Thanks Chris
Marci Houseman, Sandy
03:09:27
I echo Laura’s appreciation!
Leslie Hugo
03:09:32
Thank you!!!