With a completion date of late 2021 on the new Midvalley Highway, questions have arisen within the community about Parachute Lane and how the new highway will affect traffic in the area.
When the current phase of the project is completed, Parachute Lane, the short road that connects to the Midvalley Highway and the current segment of state Route 138 east of Sheep Lane, will become a county road, according to Courtney Samuel with the Tooele County UDOT segment.
“When the Midvalley Highway phase one is complete, the existing portion east of Parachute Lane will be a county road servicing local traffic,” said Samuel. “Traffic along the new county road will slow down to enter higher speeds along the Midvalley Highway and SR-138 will be safer for all involved.”
When the road is complete, people traveling from Grantsville to Mills Junction will drive East on SR-138, continue on to the Midvalley Highway at Sheep Lane, and then take Parachute Lane- making a right and then a 90 degree left turn to join the old SR-138 to Mills Junction.
According to Samuel, those driving from Mills Junction to Grantsville will follow the same pattern in reverse taking the old SR-138 to Parachute Lane, to the Midvalley Highway and on into Grantsville on SR-138.
Questions have arisen in the community about why UDOT’s plan is not to have those traveling from Grantsville to Mills Junction drive straight where the Midvalley Highway connects off of the old SR-138.
Samuel said this is because the portion to the east of the new highway and Parachute Lane will become a local county road that is projected to serve only local traffic and will no longer be a major highway.
UDOT has finished parts of the highway early in order for drivers traveling to Grantsville and Mills Junction to get used to the changes.
“The Midvalley Highway team was able to deliver Parachute Lane, Sheep Lane, and the southern portion of the project early in order to alleviate our full schedule in 2021 and allow for drivers to get used to the new traffic pattern,” Samuel said. “It always takes some time to change traffic behavior and we appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding.”