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UDOT makes its pick for Little Cottonwood Canyon — and it’s a gondola, eventually

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) 
A plot of land along Highway 210, pictured below center on Wednesday, July 6, 2022, could be the future location of a gondola base station to take people through Little Cottonwood Canyon. The land is owned by Snowbird, one of the resorts located in the canyon.

According to the Salt Lake Tribune, the Utah Department of Transportation said in an email Wednesday that building a gondola is the best option to solve Little Cottonwood Canyon’s lingering transportation issues.

The other main transportation option UDOT explored for Little Cottonwood Canyon would potentially expand the roadway for dedicated bus lanes and expanded bus services up and down the canyon. Either option would potentially cost the state upward of $500 million. A 2021 estimate for the gondola says the project would cost roughly $592 million.

UDOT Project Manager Josh Van Jura said in a news release that numerous studies over the years served as the starting point for addressing the transportation challenges in Little Cottonwood Canyon. He said UDOT relied on the environmental impact statement process along with agency and public input to identify Gondola B as the preferred alternative.

The gondola B option features a central station along State Route 210. In September, Snowbird ski resort quietly bought the two parcels of land along State Road 210 where the gondola would be built.

Find the full report here.