Just when you think you've seen the last of polling for 2020, here come two new polls that you might want to take note of and see what happens. Factoring in their results, some big decisions will be made that could affect all of us for some time to come.
Poll No. 1 asked 3,000 Salt Lake Valley residents what they want to see done with the 700 acres at the Point of the Mountain where the Utah State Prison is currently located. We've all heard about (and maybe have seen in person) the new airport, but few realize the new prison is being built next door to it—as in just west of the landing strips. Concrete is being poured for a brand-new facility to be completed in 2022, and you might catch a glimpse of the construction site from the sky if you fly out of town for the holidays.
The state of Utah created a development commission that politicos call "The Point," and they just finished a second phase of polling by placing five possible scenarios before stakeholders, and the public, to create a vision for the 700 acres in Draper. The goal is to offer vibrant urban centers with jobs close to where people live, with a variety of community and housing types based upon world-class public transportation, such as FrontRunner and TRAX, and with a "nationally recognized research and university presence." They want to ensure a high quality of life for residents, maximize job creation, preserve natural lands and expand recreational opportunities. You can read about it here: pointofthemountainfuture.org
Poll No. 2—regarding 17 acres in Glendale, the site of the sad, old water park known by one of three names: Wild Wave, Raging Waters or Seven Peaks—has just been completed. The abandoned site still has the broken and tagged remnants of summer fun dating back to 1979 when the park opened its faux beach with mechanically driven waves for body surfing, tall water slides and big picnic areas for families.
Since then, it's gone through a few owners and managers, and before it was permanently closed in 2018, the snack shack and a few other buildings had been vandalized and burned down.
In addition, the entire park was stripped of its wiring, pumps were stolen and dangerous chemicals were spilled from storage on the site. One contractor said that it would cost half a million bucks to tear down the faded fun. But what will replace it?
Salt Lake City purchased the park with dollars from the Utah Land and Water Conservation Fund, and now the area must remain open space for the community.
The poll ended in October with 3,500 folks chiming in. Findings were simple: 87% of those polled voted that the park should be torn down, but 53% said they'd still like to have a water park there. The Salt Lake City Council will work with the Public Lands Division in 2021 to come up with a proposal and new plan for the site that they will present to the public.