FARMINGTON -- Count Farmington city as the latest group to vehemently oppose the state's current alignment of the West Davis Corridor.
Farmington Mayor Scott Harbertson, City Manager Dave Millheim and all five members of the city council sent the Utah Division of the Federal Highway Administration a letter that discusses what the city says are substantial problems with the Utah Department of Transportation's draft environmental impact statement on the road.
"The DEIS falls short ... and does not provide the public with sufficient relevant information to allow meaningful feedback and discussion of whether such a road is needed, whether the trade-offs required are worth it, and whether less damaging alternatives have been fairly analyzed," the letter states.
"This is the single biggest issue facing Farmington, and it will be for many years to come," Millheim said. "And there are significant problems with the DEIS as currently presented in some areas. It's important that these issues affecting Farmington are properly addressed."
Millheim said that among other issues, the current plan for the corridor threatens the city's intent to remain mostly rural, with some planned areas of functioning commercial development.
The letter says the road, as currently planned, will injure the quality of life of Farmington residents, damage surrounding wildlife areas and create economic losses in the city.
The city questions whether assumptions made by UDOT about future north/south travel demands are accurate.
"An outdated travel and transportation paradigm may have been applied," the letter says. "(That) needs to be corrected."
Millheim said the council and the administration have considered a lawsuit against UDOT, which could still happen, but decided to first send the letter during the state's public comment period on the road.
The city believes the state didn't give proper consideration to the four conservation easements, which include hundreds of acres of land.
"We will vigorously defend the conservation easements affected by the proposed highway," Millheim said. "We anticipate these and the related issues discussed in our comments will result in a better decision by UDOT and Federal Highways."
UDOT spokesman John Gleason said the state received nearly 900 comments during its public comment period that ended last week.
Gleason said UDOT will carefully consider all comments it has received before moving forward with the project.
Farmington city's letter can be viewed in its entirety at www.standard.net.
Contact reporter Mitch Shaw at 801-625-4233 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter at @mitchshaw23.