FARMINGTON — Davis County is forming a new group to keep neighborhoods, houses and buildings out of the path of the West Davis Corridor.
Layton City Councilman Michael Bouwhuis, who chairs the county’s transportation committee, said a search is under way to find representatives from each city in the county that will be impacted by the WDC to form a subcommittee which will oversee corridor preservation purchases.
The county currently collects $10 from every renewed vehicle registration and uses the money to preserve corridor for future road projects.
In May 2008, the county began purchasing properties along the western portion of the county, which was identified in a 2001 study by the Wasatch Front Regional Council as the preferred alternative for the extension of Legacy Parkway.
The properties encompassed about 85 acres in western Davis County from Kaysville to West Point.
But when the Utah Department of Transportation released its preferred alternatives for the route, the majority of the land that had been purchased turned out not to be in either of the state’s final two proposed routes.
Bouwhuis said the new group will form with the goal of avoiding that fate in the future, but also to ensure land that could one day have a road running over the top of it will stay free from development.
“We want to prevent houses from being taken,” Bouwhuis said. “We want to capture land before it’s developed so we can avoid eminent domain scenarios. It will be better for property owners and for the individual cities.”
Bouwhuis said the group will develop criteria that must be met before land is purchased.
“We want to make sure we are making the right decision and using the land we have wisely,” he said.
Bouwhuis said the group will likely be fully formed by Aug. 1 and meet regularly to discuss land purchases.
UDOT hopes to complete a draft environmental impact statement on the road by the end of summer.
Once the EIS is complete, UDOT will submit the report to the Federal Highway Administration.
A final route decision is expected in 2013.