Utah Travel Headlines Blog

Friday, September 12, 2008

Legacy Parkway Is Now Open

The parkway, long-delayed by controversy because it skirts the edge of fragile wetlands along the Great Salt Lake, is expected to significantly improve travel between Salt Lake City and points north (Bountiful, Farmington, Layton, Ogden...)

Innovation and compromise allowed the project to move forward.

The Deseret Morning News has this article about the opening. Below are excerpts.

The Legacy Parkway — state Route 67 — is the first parkway in Utah to be given the scenic byway designation before construction was finished. It will be a far different driving experience than I-15.

The road purposely curves frequently to enhance its scenic qualities.

Being farther west than I-15, its views of the Wasatch Mountains are extraordinary.

Semitrailers are not allowed on the highway, with the exception of during accidents or problems on I-15.

The Salt Lake Tribune previews the opening in this news article and this editorial. Below are excerpts.

Legacy Parkway will roar to life Saturday afternoon when Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. and other officials lead state troopers in a motorcycle motorcade opening the new $685 million, four-lane highway in Davis County.

Preceding the opening will be a bicycle and foot race that morning along the highway to benefit a cancer charity.
The $685 million price tag for Utah's first parkway is high in terms of construction. But the scenic four-lane roadway running through south Davis County - given its transit through multi-government involvement, potential environmental disaster, political recriminations and the court system - has turned out to be worth every penny.

Fast forward to Saturday's opening of the Legacy Parkway, a very different roadway (than originally proposed) along a less-destructive route that skirts a massive nature preserve, has parallel bike and hiking trails, a 55-mph speed limit that reduces noise and fuel consumption, disallows heavy trucks and is, for a road, a thing of beauty.

Best of all, a heavy-rail mass transit option, the increasingly popular FrontRunner, is already up and running.

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