Skip to main content

Cottonwood Heights Journal

Resident committees prepare for 2021

Feb 08, 2021 10:11AM ● By Cassie Goff

The Parks, Trails and Open Space Committee helped to clean up city parks in 2020. (Photo courtesy of Jennifer Shah)

By Cassie Goff | [email protected]

There are many different resident-governed bodies (councils/associations/committees) within the Cottonwood Heights community. On Dec. 1, 2020, an annual recap from the Parks, Trails and Open Space Committee, Youth City Council, Historic Committee, and Arts Council was presented to the Cottonwood Heights City Council. 

Parks, Trails and Open Space (PTOS) Committee Chair Jennifer Shah presented the current plans to meet the committee’s goals for 2021 and recapped what the members achieved in 2020. 

“We are currently doing a review of all amenities throughout our parks,” Shah said. 

The review will be influential in considering a donation program for 2021. Donations would contribute to purchasing park amenities, such as benches and memorials dedicated to deceased loved ones.  

In 2021, the PTOS Committee plans to get a master plan approved; implement the Bonneville Shoreline Trail Access Plan (and alignment); see the overflow parking lot for Ferguson Trail constructed; hold naturalist talks; design and install wayfinding signage; redevelop Antczak Park (1850 E. 7200 South); contribute to the city’s monthly newsletter; continue efforts on getting a dog park within the city; and continue improving trails and connectivity throughout the city. Currently, Canyon Rim Trail, Union View Trail and multi-use paths along Fort Union all have planned improvement. 

A handful of naturalist talks were scheduled to occur at various city parks throughout the summer of 2020 but had to be postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The PTOS Committee hopes to have those events in 2021. 

In 2020, the PTOS Committee reviewed all master plans for the city including the Wasatch Blvd. Master Plan; collaborated with Utah Open Lands to purchase and preserve a parcel of land for open space; worked with Blu Line Designs on the Bonneville Shoreline Trail Master Plan and related events; published walking tours with the help of the Historic Committee and city staff members; and cleaned up city parks on Halloween. 

“We’ve done multiple tree-planting events and planted over 50 trees,” Shah said. On Nov. 6, 2019, six trees were planted at Butler Elementary School (7000 S. 2700 East). During the summer of 2019, 30 trees were planted in Mountview Park (1651 Fort Union Blvd.). On Sept. 27, 2020, 15 trees were planted at the Cottonwood Heights Recreation Center and City Hall (7500 S. 2700 East).

The PTOS Committee’s goals are: create awareness of existing and new (PTOS) opportunities; enhance the interconnectivity of trails in the city and adjacent communities; preserve natural open space; enhance the character and livability of the city through (PTOS); improve accessibility and safety; and enhance partnerships with local and regional agencies. 

The PTOS Committee has and continues to work with the Bonneville Shoreline Trail Coalition, Ivory Homes, Salt Lake County, Tree Utah, Seven Canyons Trust (participating with the Seven Greenways Visioning Plan), Utah Division of Forestry, Fire & State Lands, United States Forest Service, Utah Open Lands, and Wasatch Mountain Club.

Historic Committee Chair Jim Kichas provided the city council with an update on what the Historic Committee has been up to over the past year. 

“The first major initiative we took on in 2020 was developing a strategic plan for our committee covering the next five years,” said Kichas, making sure to align the goals of the committee with the objectives of the city’s master plan. 

Part of that plan was to further develop their social media presence. “Engagement numbers have been steadily growing,” Kichas reported. 

The Historic Committee formed an oral history and storytelling initiative, however it too had to be postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the meantime, the Historic Committee hopes to interview older residents soon, in order to further create a city archive that may be repurposed in many different ways. 

A working group was created to analyze existing records for that city archive project. Over the years, the Historic Committee has gathered, generated, and received donations of many different types of historical documents and artifacts. Analyzing and incorporating these into a city archive should be completed in 2021. 

In addition, a working group was formed to utilize city information in order to designate more historic homes and sites on the National Register of Historic Places. 

In 2021, the Historic Committee will be applying for grants to work more extensively on gathering the city’s history. They will work to maintain their certifications as well. 

The Historic Committee is also considering creating a veteran monument at Cottonwood Heights City Hall to honor the veterans within our city.

Overall goals for this Historic Committee are: provide information about the history of the city through a variety of analog and digital methods; develop and administer an archive of committee records, oral histories, written histories, photographs, artifacts, and any other documents related to the history of the city; and take a lead on historic preservation in the city.

Cottonwood Heights Councilmember Doug Peterson reported on recent activities of the Arts Council. In 2020, the Arts Council held a virtual Santa Claus meet and greet where Santa met with 150 children in a single weekend, along with a virtual Light the Night event. 

In addition, a virtual art show was hosted which highlighted “some amazing entries that won awards,” Peterson said.

In 2021, the Arts Council hopes to be able to present the play “Matilda.” In the meantime, they have been working on play-related preparations like cleaning out costume closets. They have also been working to boost their social media presence, and their engagement is up 200%. 

Cottonwood Heights Councilmember Tali Bruce reported that the Emergency Management Committee held the annual Shake Out event and received a 10.6 response rate in 2020. They asked residents to practice red tag procedures, where a red tag is placed outside the home to let emergency responders know to stop.

“Kudos to (President Carlos Cardon) and his team, they took second in the nation on Field Day with the Amateur Radio Club,” Bruce said. “They always come in first or second in the nation. We are really lucky to have that club within the city.” 

Cottonwood Heights Councilmember Scott Bracken reported that the Youth City Council has been busy this past year as well, trying to move their regular meetings online. Service Officer Anna Fairbanks coordinated a virtual service project where every member received a fabric pack to make clothing to be delivered to The Road Home. 

The Butlerville Days Committee, CH2, and Business Association have all been working to adapt to the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic as well. 

Cottonwood Heights councilmembers are actively engaged with municipal bodies throughout the valley as well, including the Salt Lake Valley Mosquito Abatement, Utah League of Cities and Towns Legislative Policy Committee, Wasatch Front Waste and Recycling District Board, Central Wasatch Commission, Conference of Mayors, Council of Governments, Unified Fire Authority, Zoo, Arts & Parks, and Salt Lake Valley Emergency Communications Center

For more information about the committees mentioned above, visit: the Boards and Commissions page on the city’s website. 

Or visit their social media pages on Facebook and Instagram (@chartscouncil/@chcity arts for the Arts Council and @CottonwoodHeightsHistoricCommittee for the Historic Committee.)