Community members want community council borders changed
After 30 years, the Mt. Olympus Community Council would like to review the location of the boundary between that of their community council and the East Millcreek Community Council.
Currently, the border between the communities is at Wasatch Blvd., with the east side being in Mt. Olympus and the west side being in East Millcreek.
Jeff Silvestrini, Mt. Olympus Hills Community Council president, said of the border, “It may have made sense when the freeway wasn’t there. That’s a natural boundary.”
Now the border creates a narrow strip of dead zone between Wasatch Blvd. and I-215, he said.
The strip is in the East Millcreek area.
“But we’re the ones that care more about it. We see it more often than they do,” said Silvestrini. Longtime resident Janet Geyser is a community activist and an original founder of the Mt. Olympus Community Council. She said that she and three PTA presidents formed the boundary there in the early 1980s.
“The reason we did it is because Wasatch Blvd. was a frontage road. We decided that one day the Bonneville Trail will be completed and that Wasatch will help connect it to the south end,” said Geyser.
She added that at the time, the freeway was there, though not completely accessible.
The strip of land between Wasatch and the freeway is mostly UDOT land. The Mt. Olympus Community Council has asked the East Millcreek Community Council to approve a change that would move the border to the other side of the strip, from Wasatch Blvd. to I-215.
“No residents are affected by this change,” Silvestrini said.
At the north end of the strip is Upper District Millcreek Park, opened in 2003, which pays tribute to early settlers and 21 original mill owners.
“It was built by Olympus Hills residents,” said Silvestrini, referencing neighborhoods that raised around $140,000 for the project. “We had people volunteer to do landscaping.”
South of the park is a power substation at 3800 South, the county salt pile and a UTA Park and Ride lot at 3900 South. Farther south is an empty UDOT right-of-way to the Holladay border at 4500 South.
“We were successful in getting UTA to add shields to their lights,” Silvestrini said, referring to Mt. Olympus residents on the east side of Wasatch that were being affected by the Park & Ride lighting on the west side.
While Silvestrini sees I-215 as a more natural boundary between the communities, some East Millcreek Community Council members are questioning the motives of moving the border.
“There is no urgency,” said East Millcreek Community Council President Nancy Carlson-Gotts. At its October meeting, the East Millcreek council decided to table the issue until after the November election and possibly after the new year.
At its December meeting, the Mount Olympus Community Council discussed sending a representative to the East Millcreek Community Council meeting in January to make their case more directly.
Geyser, too, though a resident of Olympus Hills, is dubious.
“It puzzles me why Mount Olympus wants it and why now,” she said.
Silvestrini said the timing of the request is related to the MOCC’s recent request to Salt Lake County officials that illegal signage on fencing around the off-ramps be removed.
“There’s no ulterior motive about this. It’s just that the area is in our consciousness and outside the consciousness of East Millcreek,” Silvestrini said.
The county informed Silvestrini that the fences are in the East Millcreek community and outside his council’s jurisdiction.