April-May 2022 Foothills Trail System Update
City Council Approval of Foothills Plans for 2022

With the conclusion of Phase I of implementation of the Foothills Trail System Plan, SLC Public Lands is partnering with environmental and trail design experts to evaluate the process and work thus far. With the pause in construction, Public Lands will focus its Foothills work on continuing to build strong allies within the community and support the conservation of the natural lands by promoting responsible and sustainable trail use. These plans were shared with City Council on April 19 and received unanimous support.

Rehabilitation of the Trenched Trail above Terrace Hills

The City will actively rehabilitate the damage created by the aggressive management practice of trenching a closed trail and create an updated plan for the restoration of this ridgeline. This includes working with local natural land managers and botanists to re-seed and revegetate the damaged area and channel users to a designated trail corridor. The proposal will receive input from the Parks, Natural Lands, Urban Forestry and Trails (PNUT) Advisory Board and key community stakeholders. The rehabilitation and conservation efforts will be communicated with appropriate signage and fencing at the route access points and through various communication channels including community councils and social media.

Maintenance of the Trail Network

Utilizing staff and volunteers, the Public Lands Department has been permitted to maintain Foothill trails on its property that experience erosion due to water flow, sediment settlement, and vegetation encroachments. Current maintenance needs that hope to be addressed this year include: BST East City Creek and Lower City Creek Loop trails to have revegetation and stabilization efforts on back slopes; Lower City Creek Loop requires trail tread repair from uphill water pipe leak; 19th Ave needs seasonal bike feature maintenance; and all of the new trails need seasonal loose debris clearance on trails for public safety. Additional existing trails on SLC property that will be evaluated for trail maintenance include the Ensign Peak Trail and the soft-surface trail around the east side of Federal Pointe HOA connecting Tomahawk Drive to the BST at Dry Creek.

Planning, Design, and Community Engagement of the Five Foothills Trailheads

Salt Lake City has budgeted funding, which has been matched by a generous grant from the Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation, to fund the development of five trailhead projects along the urban zone to access the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. These five locations include Victory Road, Bonneville Blvd, 18th Avenue, Popperton Park, and the mouth of Emigration Canyon. With no construction scheduled until at least 2023, Public Lands will continue to work on more detailed conceptual designs and public engagement for these five locations. When completed, the new trailheads would provide full-service amenities that include parking, comfort stations/restrooms at some locations, and wayfinding, kiosks, and interpretive signage to promote safe recreation and the conservation of our natural lands.
As promised in last September's announcement about the Foothills Trail System Plan, this is a monthly email update about the construction pause and consultant review of some aspects of the plan.