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Quinn's Junction park and ride still alive, could break ground next spring

Park City Municipal
The proposed site of a park and ride at Quinn's Junction

The Quinn’s Junction park and ride was voted down by the Park City Council this spring, but the project could get another chance later this year.

Park City’s plans for a 465-space park and ride at Quinn’s Junction were put on hold indefinitely after a 3-2 city council vote in May to delay the project.

The majority of councilors cited a need for more cooperation with Summit County, ongoing negotiations with local resorts Park City Mountain and Deer Valley, and a desire to better utilize the existing Richardson Flat park and ride as reasons not to proceed.

The topic was broached again this week at a joint meeting between the Park City and Summit County councils. Park City and Summit County continue to deal with worsening traffic issues, and park and rides that encourage the use of transit are seen as one potential solution.

Park City Councilor Ryan Dickey said the council’s reservations partly stemmed from the existing intersection where State Route 248, Highway 40, and Old Highway 40 all meet. The park and ride would have been built on the northeast side of the interchange, and he said he wants the county’s input before making a busy intersection even busier.

“We don’t want to build something that makes a bad intersection even worse," said Dickey. "It probably was a question back to the county of your level of support. Is this a good idea? If it’s a good idea, is there a commitment to prioritize on some level the moving of [Old Highway] 40, or else would you make a bad problem worse?”

Summit County Public Works Director Derrick Radke said, yes, the county does have intentions to move Old Highway 40 about 200 feet to the east to give the intersection some breathing room.

“We, as part of our transportation master plan, have always thought that the intersection of [Old Highway] 40 and [State Route] 248 needs to shift as close to the Rail Trail as feasible," he said. "That project needs to happen whether this park and ride goes there or not. It’s already very difficult to come out of that intersection and make a left turn.”

Willingness to move the SR 248 intersection with Old Highway 40 could be what the Park City Council needs to green light the project.

If the city decides to move forward, the majority of funding for the project would come from a nearly $4 million federal transportation grant. Park City would be responsible for roughly $1 million more in construction costs.

Park City Transportation Planning Manager Julia Collins said there is a risk to not making a decision on the project as soon as possible because the grant money could disappear.

“Our $3.8 million from the federal commitment, we’re actually over our three-year threshold of sitting on that capital grant," said Collins. "We continue to plead and beg and say we are working toward a decision on this project, but that is a risk. That could be in jeopardy of going away.”

Both councils agreed that city and county staff will work together on the project in the coming weeks.

Park City Manager Matt Dias said it’s his goal to return with more information on the park and ride by the next joint council meeting later this summer. He said it’s the city’s hope that if a Quinn’s Junction park and ride is deemed a good idea, the project could be put out to bid this winter and begin construction next spring.

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.