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Sugar House Journal

Open house gives residents chance to learn more about 1300 East road construction

Aug 24, 2018 12h56 ● By Jana Klopsch

Salt Lake City spokespeople were on hand to answer questions from the community at a recent open house on the 1300 East road project. (Lori Gillespie/City Journals)

By Lori Gillespie | [email protected] 

At a recent open house held at Westminster College, Salt Lake City officials and engineers were on hand to answer questions from the public regarding the big road reconstruction of 1300 East from 1300 South to 2100 South.  Anyone who works or lives in the area knows the high usage of this thoroughfare, and the impact of the reconstruction will be extensive. Underground is being done now and the road will be completely replaced in the next year. At the open house, spokespeople for Salt Lake City and the contractors working on the job answered questions from the community.

The first part of the work, laying new water and sewage lines, began in late July and will continue until January.  The main impact of this project will be traffic.

“Throughout the first phase of this project we are trying to keep two lanes, one in each direction,” said Dan Cockayne, contractor. “There are times we will have to stop the cars to move our machines and the road is so tight that we will have to use the whole street because of trees and power lines.”

They are not anticipating a big impact to the traffic during this first phase. “In order to meet our schedule to be done with this phase in January we will have to work 10-hour days. It’s a fast schedule,” said Cockayne. 

The new water line has already been connected at the intersection of 2100 South and 1300 East and they will lay north on the west side of the road. Soon they will start work going south from 1300 South laying on the east side of the road. And while all this is going on, they will be doing the cleaning and prepping of the sewer line.

“In October, the sewer contractor will do the in-place lining of the existing sewer line,” said Cockayne. “The water lines are brand new pipes, but we are not doing that with the sewer line.” The existing clay sewer line is about 100 years old. They go in with a video camera, find all the pipes from the homes, make sure all is ok and there are no protrusions into the main line and clean all the calcium deposits. When that is done, they put a liner into the existing sewer pipe. “Essentially they are building a new pipe inside the old one,” said Cockayne.

While they don’t anticipate any major interruptions to water access to the homes on 1300 East, there will be small shutdowns. All of those are planned to happen during the overnight hours and the homeowners and residents will be made aware of when those will happen. 

Once water lines are laid, there will be a break in activity through the remainder of winter and phase two is scheduled to start in April of 2019. The second phase will be a much bigger deal and will encompass a total rebuilding of the road, curb and gutter. 

“We have three scheduled meetings to inform the public about the construction project,” said Matt Cassell, Salt Lake City engineer. “We have an email that people can sign up for and we plan on using social media. This open house was a public engagement meeting. It is allowing us to get information for the homeowners on any problems they may have with their property – maybe the curb or gutter in front of their house is a problem, or their house isn’t draining, and they need something fixed. It’s an opportunity for us to learn some of the issues we may not be aware of and give us a chance to problem solve those before the new road construction starts.” 

There will be another meeting in a few months where they will let everyone know what the traffic flow will look like and when the road construction phase is set to begin.

“When we start the project next summer, it will be very hard for us to keep the road open all the time, so we will need to let everyone know what the time table is and where the detour routes may be,” Cassel said. “That will be very important not only for the people who live on the street but also for all the commuters so that they understand where the closures and slow downs will be so they can use another route to get to where they need to be.”

A final community engagement meeting will happen right before the actual work starts. This will give the community an opportunity to meet the contractor and other key people to contact with any questions or concerns that may arise during the construction process.

One of the items still undecided is where they will make the road concrete or asphalt.  “Asphalt has a life of about 30 years, with maintenance about every seven.  Concrete lasts 50 years, and with the new water system that will be in place, concrete could be the better choice,” said Cassel.

If you were unable to attend the meeting and want to express your input, or if you are a homeowner on 1300 East and have some questions, or information about your property you need to share, you can find contact information on the construction website at