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Park City Council Hears From Disgruntled Hillside Residents

During Park City Council’s session on Thursday, the public input segment brought out two unhappy residents from the Hillside Avenue area—saying that the city has done little or nothing to stop Main Street traffic from funneling through their neighborhood.

Peter Marth told the council that it’s practically an insult that city efforts to mitigate traffic through their area have failed.

“This issue has been unresolved for way too long now. Everything from Grappa south is zoned residential. Main Street is using our residential streets as on on-ramp to Main Street in and out. We’ve been asking for help and nothings been done.”

He claimed there’s little sign of progress after several years.

“Eight years and seven months after the hillside narrowing to preclude this traffic, and four years since the neighborhood traffic mitigation committee prepared their report and handed it to staff. The commercial signage in the HR-1 zone stands in defiance of the land management code and as a symbolic sign of disrespect. The sign’s still there in our HR-1 zone, the commercial directional sign.”

Marth said their suggestions have been watered down or ignored.

“The inability of our council, citizens and or residents to defend our residential neighborhood sanctity from large quantities of speeding Main Street generated traffic speaks volumes. We demand answers. The continued lack of action seems to be guided by a silent hand that is clearly influenced by unwarranted business interests over the resident’s safety.”

Resident Clive Bush also said that the city is placing perceived business interest over those of the residents. He said hospitality shuttles are still driving through their area.

“These are back again thick and fast. It’s clear to all of us who live on these streets that the experiment to request the hospitality industry to play ball has proven a failure. This clearly needs a swift re-think.”

Following that, Rob Slettom from the Park City Lodging Association said the city needs to bring everyone together, but finding answers are not easy.

“There could be pull-out places on Main Street for taxis which would make it easier. I’ve heard from various lodging entities that are up in Empire Pass area they are looking at other solutions to try to minimize the amount of traffic on hillside. Unfortunately, some of those roads weren’t developed by Brigham Young, and we maybe wouldn’t have this problem but still even with wide roads you get traffic and speeders and I know they can swing up and go down Park Avenue. I think the point is we may have to start really taking a hard look at sacrificing some parking spaces back in Swede Alley.”

Mayor Andy Beerman said they have been and still are committed to finding solutions.

“We are looking to reduce the traffic further on Hillside. We’ve taken initial measures and we have plans for more. We’re also looking at ways we can better accommodate the shuttles because we know those take individual vehicles off the street. We realize there needs to be safe spaces for them to both park and drop people off. That is all in the works and we appreciate the fact that you do want to get together and work on this because we will be calling you soon. There are a lot of ideas I think Alfred and his team are ready to roll out. We’re going to need some feedback and most of all we’re going to need some cooperation.”

Known for getting all the facts right, as well as his distinctive sign-off, Rick covered Summit County meetings and issues for 35 years on KPCW. He now heads the Friday Film Review team.
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