Jeremy Ranch Elementary Kids Will Have New Path And Wetlands Next Year

Mar 28, 2019

Credit Summit County

The Park City School District and Summit County have agreed on a project to restore the Jeremy Ranch wetlands and build a multiuse pathway from Homestead Rd to the elementary school. It’s part of the larger I-80/Jeremy Ranch interchange round about project scheduled to start this spring.

Now that the $10.6 million-dollar interchange project is about to commence, the school district, Summit County and Basin Recreation plan to work together to restore the wetlands and build a safer pathway for students to walk and bike to school.

The Jeremy Ranch Elementary School wetlands restoration project was tabled about two years ago because the school district did not have funding available. Last week,  Park City School District Business Administrator Todd Hauber updated the school board on the history of the project.

“Developed a culvert large enough for this stream to go through and for this trail to go through. What happened is it accelerated the speed of the Creek and so it has started to undercut the trail. So, we have a failed trail structure. Longer term though is the wetlands isn't wet anymore because for a number of years the stream has been just cutting straight through. It's not slowed down in order to create a wetland. So, with the opportunity of the Jeremy Ranch interchange going in and having to work on the creek flow in that part of the property, they are also looking to see if they can restore the wetlands. And, for the school, it gives an opportunity for outdoor science.”

Summit County Public Works Director Derrick Radke says their wetlands mitigation plan for the I-80 interchange project originally submitted was not approved by the Army Corp of Engineers so they reached out to the school district to explore other options. He anticipates they will get approval on this project within the month.

“Eventually the school, if they wanted to do some interactive wetland stuff for the kids, they could build a boardwalk out towards the wetlands, maybe even out into it. So, they could do some observation, but that'll be a future project. The path is going to be right along Bluebird Lane so it's outside the wetlands. Assuming the Corp of Engineers approves the mitigation plan then County and rec district probably will build it this fall.”

Huaber told the school board, the land will be placed under a conservation easement and the trail and the wetlands will be maintained through the interlocal agreement between the school district and the county. The school district agreed to split the cost of materials to build the 800-foot path from Homestead Road to the elementary school.

“That’s in the interlocal agreement. Okay. So, they bring money to it. $30,000 on top of the other funds that are available.  The county brings 30,000 to the project to get this all done and then they maintain it and Basin Rec builds the trail that their supporters are trying to save the trail that’s starting to collapse. So, that’s their commitment."

School Board member Erin Grady made a motion to approve the wetlands mitigation plan, the conservation easement and the walk/bike trail. Member Kara Hendrickson seconded the motion. It passed unanimously.