ZAP Board recommends $2.1M for Jordan River Water Trail

On Tuesday, May 24, the Salt Lake County Zoo, Arts, and Parks (ZAP) Recreational Facilities Advisory Board recommended to the County Council authorization of over $40 million in projects to be funded by a bond on the ballot this November. If the Council approves the projects and authorizes the bond the funding of $2.1 for the Jordan River Water Trail will be a major boost for boating on the river.

The overall vision for the Jordan River Water Trail includes consistent signage along the river and at trailheads, formalized boat launch and take-out points, and safety interventions and signage at boater hazards. Several efforts are underway to mitigate navigational hazards that exist within the river, as well as to plan for, design, and implement a series of boater access facilities.

A preliminary Water Trail Master Plan can be found in the Salt Lake County’s Jordan River Trail Master Plan. Salt Lake County is planning to prepare an update and refinement of this plan in 2016, and funding is being sought to implement the plan once complete. The City of Saratoga Springs plans to install three boat launches in the Utah County in 2016, and two more are planned for the future. The City of North Salt Lake is actively working to construct a take-out and boater parking area at Center Street in the Davis County section of the river. This is also expected to be completed in 2016.

Finally, the Utah Division of Forestry Fire and State Lands is working with various local governments to mitigate, and eliminate where possible, the most dangerous navigational hazards to boaters in the river. In 2015, the deadly “Winchester Hazard” was re-engineered and the rapid is now safe to float for most boaters thanks to a partnership between the State, Murray City and Salt Lake County. Discussions are underway to address other significant hazards in the river.