CENTERVILLE - city staff members are concerned about the misconceptions that have cropped up about the Main St. and Parrish Lane intersection project.
The project, which would add a second northbound left turn lane to Parrish and a second eastbound left turn lane to Main St., has come under fire recently for the fact that it would remove 11.5 feet of property from the homes along northbound Main Street. Though the city council won’t make a decision about when or how to move ahead with the project until its Sept. 4 meeting, a recent work session with Utah Department of Transportation focused on addressing some of the issues raised by residents.
“Every one of the council members has empathy for the property owners,” said Centerville City Manager Steve Thacker. “We’ve really been struggling to balance the needs of the property owners with the needs of the community.”
Several of the comments focused on preserving Centerville’s small-town and historic nature. The main focus of this is the Joel Parrish house, which was built in 1860 and would lose part of its front yard if Main Street is widened to accept the proposed second northbound turn lane on Parrish.
“Please don’t destroy our beautiful corner of Centerville and the beautiful homes that have been here for a long time,” wrote Leann Parrish. “It means a lot to us.”
Initially, the project would take 13 feet of the Parrish house’s front yard, but recent alterations made by UDOT have reduced that number to 11.5 feet. If this happens, the house would be left with 29 feet of yard between the road and the front porch, with nearly 35 feet of front yard between the road and the house.
“The city has tried hard to reduce the impact on residents,” said Thacker.
Other residents argued that the traffic issues experienced in the area would be better solved through other means, including changing the timing on the light.
“To take the property from people before you’ve even tried to solve the problem by changing/lengthening the turn signal is so wrong it may be immoral,” wrote Valori Herrmann.
Though the light is affected by the number of cars in the lane during off hours, timing tests by both UDOT representatives and Thacker himself have shown that eight to 10 cars have the time to make it through the light during peak hours. UDOT has recently lengthened the timing of the light by a few seconds, but Thacker said that’s only a temporary solution to traffic concerns.
For more information check out the August 30 edition of Davis Clipper.