Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

September 10, 2020
County gearing up for general plan update

4-years after last update, County looking for consultant for general plan  

Four years after the last general plan update, Tooele County is embarking on another general plan update journey.

Tooele County officials are sorting through proposals from consultants in an effort to select one to help the county with a general plan update, according to Jeff MIller, Tooele County planning staff.

The county has received an $80,000 grant from the Wasatch Front Regional Council to help with the general plan update. The County will kick-in another $20,000 as matching funds for the grant, bringing the total budget for the update process to $100,000, Miller told the Tooele County Planning Commission during their Sept. 2 meeting.

The general plan is “an official document intended to help the public understand the broad planning goals for the County, and to assist decision makers as they evaluate future development and growth,” reads the first paragraph of the Tooele County General Plan Update 2016.

The process for the 2016 update began in July 2015 and ended with the adoption of the update by the County Commission in June 2016.

The 2016 process started with the selection of two consultants. Landmark Design, a Salt Lake City-based consulting firm led the land use part of the update. InterPlan, another Salt Lake City-based consulting firm that specializes in transportation planning work on the transportation element of the plan.

A Steering Committee was established to review progress and to provide guidance as the plan was formulated. Members of the committee included County staff and administration, representatives of Tooele and Grantsville cities, large landowners, real estate and economic development experts, other local and regional agencies, and a county resident.

The steering committee held four meetings to discuss the general plan update.

Three public meetings for public input were held in July, September, and December. Landmark Design advertised a website link where residents could view drafts of the update plan and leave comments. 

The county planning commission held a public hearing and sent a positive recommendation for adoption of the proposed plan to the County Commission in January 2016.

The County Commission adopted the general plan update in June 2016.

Mark Vlasic, principal and president of Landmark Design, presented the draft update to the planning commission in a January 2016 meeting.

The land-use plan will create clustered density near cities, services and gathering places while preserving open space, scenic resources, access to public lands, and agriculture land, according to Vlasic.

“The plan shows nodes of higher density business and residential at the center surrounded by areas of decreasing density,” he said.

The nodes were envisioned to be thriving mixed-use destinations that serve the surrounding areas with services, according to the plan update.

“The centers should range from one-quarter to one-half mile in extent, and should be carefully designed to capture the unique vernacular forms and themes that define Tooele Valley,” read the update.

The plan also included suggestions for the preservation of open space, historic landmarks, cultural landscape, and scenic resources.

The suggestions included cluster development with conservation easements, sensitive land overlays with zoning and development restrictions, purchasing and sellback, and land banking.

The plan included examples of ordinances from other jurisdictions.

The Tooele County Commission included updating the general plan in the County’s 2020 budget.

 

Tim Gillie

Editor at Tooele Transcript Bulletin
Tim has been writing for the Transcript Bulletin since October 2017. In February 2019 he was named as editor. In addition to being editor, Tim continues to write about Tooele County government, education, business, real estate, housing, politics and the state Legislature.A native of Washington state and a graduate of Central Washington University, Tim became a journalist after a 20 year career with the Boy Scouts of America.

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