Pleasant Grove street closure upsets residents

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    By TAWNA TURNER

    The Pleasant Grove City proposal to vacate part of a city street has many local residents upset.

    The city proposes to close 100 South from 100 East to 150 East in order to extend Heritage Park and construct several historical buildings, said Charmaine Childs, city recorder.

    Pleasant Grove City Council will discuss the proposal at tonight’s city council meeting.

    Although the city owns the property on both sides of 100 East, closing the street will affect many residents living in the area.

    Several city buildings are located on 100 East, including the police station and the local fire station.

    William Bugden, at 170 E. 100 South, is one resident upset by the proposal, and his main concern is safety.

    “If I had a fire it would take the fire department three blocks to get to my house instead of a half a block,” Bugden said.

    Bugden says he has talked to his neighbors, and he is not the only one upset.

    Helen Wadley doesn’t live on the street, but owns a rental home at 135 E. 100 South and may eventually move there with her husband. Her main concern is the traffic problems caused by blocking a main street.

    “With the influx of residents, the last thing they should be doing is closing a street,” Wadley said.

    The city conducted a traffic study at the corner of 100 East and 100 South, and Al Mickelsen, community development director, said the traffic count was negligible. But Wadley thinks even a small number of cars will make a difference when the traffic is deflected to the already-busy Center Street and 200 South.

    Wadley is also concerned about the welfare of what local residents call “little Smith’s” — a small market at the corner of 100 South and Main Street. Right now the market is within easy walking distance of 100 South residents, but this would change if the road is closed.

    People would have to get in their cars and drive to the market if they blocked the street, and Wadley is afraid most people wouldn’t bother. “I think this would make a difference in business,” Wadley said.

    Despite local concerns, the city’s proposal is intended to benefit Pleasant Grove residents, Mickelsen said. Mickelsen also said the city’s goal is to have residents “look at the park as truly a heritage park,” and gain a better sense of their heritage.

    The city plans to bring in a replica of Pleasant Grove’s first water pumping machine as well as a historical corral. The city needs the space on 100 South to put up these type of heritage facilities.

    Mickelsen said the proposed changes will “make it work like a heritage park instead of a grassy area with a few trees.”

    The city council will meet tonight at 7:30 p.m. in the meeting room of the library at 30 E. Center St., Pleasant Grove.

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