Eagle Mountain City has formally adopted a new Transportation Master Plan.

In September, City staff presented the Transportation Master Plan to the Eagle Mountain City Council for discussion and approval.

At both the September, and a subsequent October City Council meetings, the Council tabled the proposed Plan until further research could be conducted to study its impacts on wildlife and key neighborhoods.

On Feb. 7, the Transportation Master Plan was again presented to Council for approval with further research included.

Kevin Croshaw, transportation engineer with Horrocks Engineers, presented additional analysis, specifically on the impacts of a proposed SR-73 freeway.

Together with City staff, Horrocks Engineering analyzed the projected impacts of traffic congestion on Pony Express Parkway and Ranches Parkway should a future freeway be aligned further west — away from residential areas.

The analysis showed that pushing the freeway to the west would lead to increased volumes of traffic on Ranches and Pony Express Parkways, as opposed to constructing the freeway closer to the residential areas to the east.

“The farther east we could keep [the future freeway], he more traffic it pulled off of Pony Express…and Ranches Parkway, for that matter,” says Chris Trusty, engineer for Eagle Mountain City. “Anywhere from 12% to 20% less traffic on those roads than if it had been further to the west.”

Engineers and City staff also performed an analysis to determine if expanding the capacity of Mid Valley Road would impact traffic congestion on Pony Express Parkway.

Croshaw called the impact of the expansion “negligible.”

In addition to expanding the capacity of Mid Valley Road, the Transportation Master Plan also lays out a plan for Mid Valley Road to head east from City Center, through the Hidden Valley area, and into Saratoga Springs, according to Trusty.

“[This] would provide another east-west connection between Eagle Mountain and Saratoga, and we’re trying to get funding to do further studies on that,” says Trusty.

As part of the analysis presentation, Croshaw also provided four alternative alignments of the future SR-73 freeway to the Council to illustrate the potential outcomes of the Master Plan. He noted that the Utah Department of Transportation, while open to the City’s input, would make the final decision.

Accommodations for wildlife were also taken into consideration and were added to the proposed Transportation Master Plan.

“That was one thing that we originally didn’t show on the Transportation Master Plan,” says Trusty. “So, we added that corridor in and made recommendations for roadways that cross that kind of swath of land and identified areas where we would want there to be wildlife underpasses, overpasses or at-grade crossings.”

Chad Welch, on behalf of the Eagle Mountain Nature and Wildlife Association, took to the podium and asked for language clarifications in the sections regarding wildlife crossings and requested that the Mid Valley Road wildlife crossing be changed from a surface crossing to an overpass.

The Transportation Master Plan, with the two changes requested by Welch, was approved by the Eagle Mountain City Council 5-0.

While recognizing that the plan is not written in ink, and is subject to changes in the coming years, Trusty says the plan will be the City’s “guiding document for roadways,” from this point forward.

Read the final official version of the Transportation Master Plan.