The Salt Lake County Council this week decided to continue with parking restrictions near a trailhead that has affected the area’s residents.
There are two ways to summit Grandeur Peak, which stands between Parley’s and Millcreek Canyons. The first, more popular trail begins in Millcreek Canyon. The second trail gets less traffic because it’s a much steeper and more rugged climb. It begins in a neighborhood at the northern end of Wasatch Boulevard. Salt Lake County Councilman Sam Granato says traffic near the second trailhead has been an issue for residents for a long time.
“[There was] trash in their yards, people were parking all over the streets, especially around Warr Road. It caused people not really to be able to get out of their driveways. Also, if there were to be a fire, you really could not turn a fire truck around on that street,” Granato says.
Last summer the Salt Lake County Council authorized a pilot program that limited street parking in the area to residents. Dozens of “No Parking” signs went up and people who live there received parking permits. Since then, visiting hikers have had their parking options limited to a 17-stall parking lot that also serves visitors to Parley’s Nature Park.
Wendy Fisher with Utah Open Lands says as the population grows, public access to trails and open spaces remains more important than ever.
“It’s one of those places that, fortunately, is easy for people to get outdoors,” Fisher says. “But with that comes the consequence of ‘How do we park?’ and ‘How do we not love it to death?’ and all sorts of things.”
Councilman Granato says this week the County Council was persuaded by residents near the Grandeur Peak trailhead to keep the parking situation how it is—at least until 2017, when the issue will fall into the hands of the newly-formed Millcreek City’s first mayor and city council.