MTS Expert Panel Event Kicks Off the Second MTS Public Comment Period and Release of the Draft MTS Alternatives Report

As part of its Mountain Transportation System (MTS) initiative, the Central Wasatch Commission will host an expert panel on Friday, September 18th from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. Panelists will include Laura Briefer, Director of Salt Lake City Public Utilities, Carolyn Gonot, Executive Director of the Utah Transit Authority, Ned Hacker, Director of Operations and Special Projects with the Wasatch Front Regional Council, Chris Cushing, a Principal with the SE Group, and Martin Ritter, CEO at Stadler US.


Following an introduction from Salt Lake County Mayor and Co-Chair of the Central Wasatch Commission, Jenny Wilson, the panelists will discuss the major transportation alternatives under consideration through the CWC’s Mountain Transportation System initiative: mountain bus service expansion, an aerial system, and a rail system. Potential impacts on the watershed correlated with respective modes and alternatives will be addressed throughout the event. Members of the public will be invited to participate in the panel event by submitting questions specific to the Mountain Transportation System for the panelists to consider.


The September 18th event will be moderated by Summit County Council member and Central Wasatch Commission Chair, Christopher F. Robinson and Sandy City Council member, and Central Wasatch Commission member, Marci Houseman.


The expert panel on the 18th will initiate the second public comment period the Central Wasatch Commission has opened as part of the Mountain Transportation System initiative. From February 7th – March 1st, 2020, 1,223 comments were received from 366 individuals on the scope, goals, and attributes of a Mountain Transportation System. Those comments helped shape the Commission’s recommendations for the priorities for a regional mountain transportation system serving both the Wasatch Front and Back: namely, a regional mountain transportation system should be efficient, safe, reliable while reducing traffic congestion, incentivizing transit use, and protecting the watershed, wilderness, and viewshed.


Achieving transportation solutions for the Central Wasatch Mountains was a major goal of Mountain Accord. Multiple studies were conducted before, under Mountain Accord, and subsequently that analyzed local and regional transportation issues. Building on the work by Mountain Accord, UTA, Wasatch Front Regional Council, and UDOT, the Central Wasatch Commission (CWC) is coordinating among jurisdictions and engaging the public to seek consensus for a proposed mountain transportation system in the Central Wasatch Mountains region through the Mountain Transportation System initiative.


The CWC began the year-long Mountain Transportation System process in early 2020 to further refine and develop the transportation principles in the Mountain Accord. Over the course of 2020, the Central Wasatch Commission aims to arrive at a proposed comprehensive year-round transportation system that includes the Salt Lake Valley, Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons, Parleys Canyon, and connections to the Wasatch Back. Stakeholders and the public have been and are invited to engage at every juncture during this process, continuing with the Mountain Transportation System Expert Panel scheduled for Friday, September 18th, 2:00 –4:00 p.m.


Event details are as follows:
What: CWC Mountain Transportation System Expert Panel
When: Sep 18, 2020 02:00 PM Mountain Time (US and Canada)
Register in advance for this webinar here.


Registration for the event is limited. If the registration cap is reached, interested public may tune into the expert panel event via Facebook Live, at the below link. Staff will be monitoring Facebook Live during the event.You may tune into the live-streamed event through Facebook Live here. Submit a question pertinent to the Mountain Transportation System for the expert panel to potentially answer here.
If time does not allow for all audience questions to be addressed during the panel event, you may send your questions to CWC staff by emailing or calling staff directly. Contact information is listed here.

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