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Park City Council Returns This Week To Revisit Gordo Soils Site and Approve Wildfire Mitigation Fund

Park City Municipal

The Park City Council meet Thursday for its first meeting since July 15th.


Thursday’s council meeting is scheduled to begin at 4:00pm. The work session will cover landscape bonds, the creation of a public improvement district, and a follow-up discussion on the controversial soils site known as the Gordo project.


Public improvement districts, known as PIDs, are a public finance tool cities can use to incentivize economic development or redevelopment. In a PID, a city covers some development costs associated with things like water, sewer, or roads in exchange for a community benefit like a reduction of environmental impacts or neighborhood revitalization.


Last on the work session agenda, the council will revisit the proposed soils management facility at the Gordo property on SR 248.


The project is an effort to store mining waste from Park City’s days as a mining town safely and economically within city limits. The soil contains chemicals like lead and arsenic and is found throughout much of the Old Town and Prospector areas of town. Mining waste excavated during construction projects is currently transported to the west desert of Tooele County. The city estimates $17 million dollars could be saved over the next 10 years if the soil can be stored inside the city.


The council held a lengthy public hearing in July where not one person spoke in support of the project in its current form.


Park City Manager Matt Dias said there is no staff recommendation to move forward with the existing plan on Thursday. He said he thinks the council will decide to explore other options.


“You know, we actually don’t anticipate a sensational discussion on Thursday night,” Dias said. “We’re more or less coming back to cure the existing council position, which we think is continue to pause, re-engage with the Environmental Protection Agency, re-engage with Summit County, re-engage with the stakeholders in the area and try to determine if there are alternative solutions to present our public.”


Also under consideration is a $300,000 approval for wildfire mitigation services on Treasure Hill. Dias said the money will go toward much more than simply clearing brush and dead trees.


“There’s clearly some work that we need to do up there and I think we have that hopefully covered with our internal team with the city and using an external contractor,” he said. “It involves aerial mapping, a landscape plan, but they will be taking down a lot of the deadfall over the next couple years.”


Other agenda items include May sales tax numbers, a report on the transit to trails pilot program, and an update on efforts to make Marsac Avenue safer following last month’s dump truck crash. Last on the agenda is the certification of the August 10th municipal primary election results.


A full agenda and information on how to participate can be found here.

Sean Higgins covers all things Park City and is the Saturday Weekend Edition host at KPCW. Sean spent the first five years of his journalism career covering World Cup skiing for Ski Racing Media here in Utah and served as Senior Editor until January 2020. As Senior Editor, he managed the day-to-day news section of skiracing.com, as well as produced and hosted Ski Racing’s weekly podcast. During his tenure with Ski Racing Media, he was also a field reporter for NBC Sports, covering events in Europe.