Originally Published: December 4, 2018 9:19 p.m.
The recent suggestion in the Courier that the city might consider widening Rt. 89 through the Granite Dells should give us pause to consider the extent to which taxpayers are subsidizing development in our area and our long-term financial liability in supporting this and other development.
The Phippen roundabout built at a cost of approximately $1.5 million, primarily for the benefit of the Walden Ranch development, for which that developer chipped in $125,000 while the City, on taxpayers’ behalf, provided the remainder. Something seems amiss here! This same roundabout would also serve Arizona Eco Development, Granite Dells Estates and Jasper.
It now looks like the city might be considering a further substantial use of tax-payers dollars to the tune of around $5 million to widen a well-known and historic route through the Granite Dells to carry increased traffic - the consequence of unabated and poorly planned development in the area. It is said that 50 percent of the $5 million cost will be borne by growth related impact fees, which leaves existing home-owners on the hook for $2.5 million. This all boils down to “Developers’ Welfare,” for which we all pay dearly.
Surely, city planners must have known that development on the current scale would lead to a huge increase of vehicular traffic on all our roads. Were traffic bottle-necks and their mitigation ever considered in earlier planning and zoning meetings?
As taxpayers, do we want the city to continue subsidizing poorly planned development at our expense? We should make our voices heard in stopping this flagrant misuse of our taxes.
Roy H. Smith