3900 South speed reduction to extend road lifespan
Aug 23, 2018 03:49PM
● By Jana Klopsch
A stretch of 3900 South that is considered in poor condition. (Travis Barton/City Journals)
By Travis Barton | [email protected]
Speed limits along 3900 South could be reduced this fall in an effort limit wear and tear on the road, according to Holladay city officials.
3900 South, particularly from 2700 East to I-215, is in poor condition, said Holladay City Manager Gina Chamness. Approximately $4 million is available to fix this stretch of road through a grant from the Wasatch Regional Front Council (WRFC), she said, but those funds won’t be available until 2024. There is an additional $1 million available in funding through Salt Lake County.
“What we’re talking about is a major reconstruction,” Chamness told the Holladay City Council. “That section (2700 East to I-215) has maybe never been reconstructed.”
City officials are working with surrounding communities to improve a road beset with issues for a long time.
“We have been meeting with Millcreek and South Salt Lake and other communities hoping that we can secure a solution for this important east-west corridor because it’s not only our section but other sections in poor condition,” Chamness said.
The solution being considered right now? Reducing the speed limit to limit the wear and tear on the road thereby extending its lifespan. The idea was suggested by a Millcreek city engineer.
The road not only has potholes and pavement issues, but problems beneath the surface. The road base is too old with too much water getting in, Rita Lund, Millcreek’s director of communications, told the Holladay Journal.
“When you get to that point you need to remove all the pavement and get a new base in,” she said.
Lund said the plan would include signage for both speed limits as well as informing residents that the reduction is temporary until further funding is acquired for a full reconstruction.
Currently, 3900 South is 40 mph; the proposed speed reduction would be from 40 to 30 mph between I-215 and 2700 East. Then from 2700 East to 2300 East, speed would be reduced from 40 to 35 mph.
Holladay City Councilman Steve Gunn said he’s been asked a couple times from one resident about possible solutions to 3900 South.
“I hope I will not be anywhere close to him when I say our solution is to lower the speed limit,” Gunn said. “It’s almost a gravel road now…the longer we wait the greater the cost will be to repair the road."
To reconstruct the section from 2300 East to I-215 would cost $8.7 million, Chamness said, and “we at this point don’t have the funding.”
They are attempting to fast-track the $4 million from WRFC to 2020, but even then wouldn’t reach the required $8.7 million.
This reconstruction would include sidewalks, street lights and storm drains in addition to the road.
City officials are working toward a long-term solution, but feel this speed reduction — which could be implemented as soon as this fall — will help in the short term.
A lot of moving pieces exist right now with surrounding cities and what funding will be used and where it will come from. For now, Mayor Rob Dahle is asking for patience.
“We are fully aware of the issues on 3900 South and we’ve entered into a partnership with a lot of other cities to try and get something done on a large stretch of that road from Wasatch (Boulevard) all the way down to 1100 West,” said the mayor.