The Draft Environmental Impact Statement, or Draft EIS, is a draft version of the report required by the National Environmental Policy Act, or NEPA, for particular actions that could significantly affect the quality of the human and natural environment. The Draft EIS describes the purpose and need, a description of the alternatives development and screening process, and detailed impact information for the alternatives evaluated for the I-15 Payson Main Street Interchange.
All chapters of the Draft EIS are available for download on the Draft EIS page. Single hard copies are also available at various locations, including:
- Payson City Municipal Building (439 W. Utah Ave., Payson, Utah 84651)
- Payson City Library (66 South Main St., Payson, Utah 84651)
- UDOT Region Three Office (658 North 1500 West, Orem, Utah 84057)
- UDOT Central Environmental Office (Calvin L. Rampton Complex, 4501 South 2700 West, Salt Lake City, Utah 84119)
- Payson EIS Study project office (H.W. Lochner, 3995 South 700 East, Suite 450, Salt Lake City, Utah 84107)
What is the Preferred Alternative, and why was it selected?
UDOT is recommending Alternative C1 – Braided Ramps as the Preferred Alternative. Alternative C1 provides a connection between the Main Street interchange and a new interchange approximately 0.7 miles to the northeast. The new interchange will connect with a new arterial road, Nebo Beltway, connecting I-15 to SR-198. Braided ramps (i.e., ramps that cross over each other) will provide a free-flow connection between the two interchanges. Main Street would be widened to five lanes at the interchange and taper to its current configuration south of 600 North. Main Street would also be realigned to connect to 900 North. To see a map of this alternative, click here.
The preferred alternative was selected based on a thorough analysis of the transportation benefits, design and operational considerations, impacts to key resources, costs, input from the public and agencies, and regulatory requirements. Alternative C1 was selected as the Preferred Alternative because it would have the lowest average daily vehicle delay and combines the benefits of two interchanges- one at Main Street and one at the proposed Nebo Beltway- connected by free-flowing/continuous ramps. It would also avoid historic properties protected under Section 4(f). Alternative C1 was also supported by the community. Please see Chapter 2 of the Draft EIS for a complete review of how the preferred alternative was identified.
Is the preferred alternative identified in the Draft EIS the final decision?
The preferred alternative is the alternative recommended by UDOT based on all the information, input and analysis received and studied since the beginning of the study in 2014. The project team will review comments received during the Draft EIS comment period, and each comment will be responded to in the Final EIS. It is possible that comments on the Draft EIS could lead to changes to the Preferred Alternative, if warranted by new information provided to the project team. After the Final EIS is published, the final decision will be made by UDOT at the completion of the study through the Record of Decision.
Are farms, homes, historic properties, businesses and wetlands all equally considered? How are they protected?
Impacts to all of these resources are analyzed in the Draft EIS. UDOT tried to minimize impacts to all of these resources when developing and refining the alternatives. All of the alternatives evaluated in the Draft EIS have some impacts to farms, homes, businesses and wetlands. The federal Clean Water Act requires UDOT to try to avoid, minimize and mitigate any impacts to wetlands and waters of the U.S. Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act and Section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act require UDOT to avoid, minimize, and mitigate impacts to historic properties on or eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. Other resources are also protected by similar laws.
Which homes or businesses will be directly impacted (i.e., relocated)? When will we know?
An estimate of the direct home impacts (relocations) and potential relocations for the Payson I-15 Interchange alternatives evaluated in the Draft EIS are identified in Chapter 3. These relocations and potential relocations are based on the preliminary engineering design used in the Draft EIS. A final list of relocations cannot be determined until a final decision is made by UDOT in the Record of Decision, and until final engineering design is completed prior to construction.
Will we receive compensation if our home is not purchased but our property value decreases?
Federal and state law requires UDOT to compensate landowners for property purchased by the project and provide relocation assistance for property owners displaced by the project.
What is an official public comment period?
An official public comment period is a designated time during the study when comments from the public are received and documented as part of the project record. There have been two public comment periods so far during this study: one during the Scoping phase, and another during the Alternatives Development Stage. A third public comment period will continue for 45 days after the release of the Draft EIS. Official public comments received during the Draft EIS will be addressed in the Final EIS.
How do I make a comment on the Draft EIS?
Public comments on the draft EIS are no longer being accepted. A 45-day public comment period was provided following the release of the Draft EIS. During this time, the public was encouraged to review the contents of the Draft EIS and provide comments through the website, via email, or by mail. These comments will be included in the overall study record and will be considered in preparation of the Final EIS.
How will my comment be responded to?
These comments will be included in the overall study record. Each comment received on the Draft EIS will be responded to in the Final EIS.
Is the public comment period a vote?
No, the public comment period is not a vote. Public comments are designed to allow the public to provide feedback on the study, and specifically to provide input or additional information to assist the project team in identifying the best transportation solution. All submitted comments will be considered equally, regardless of how they were submitted. There is no need to submit your comment more than once as all comments will be carefully considered.
What is a public hearing?
During the 45-day comment period following the release of the Draft EIS, a public hearing was held to give the public the opportunity to verbally express their comments on the Draft EIS to project leaders. Attendees to the public hearings who wished to do so could sign in and then be called up to a microphone to share their comments with the project team. Each person was allotted three minutes to make their comment, and a professional court reporter recorded each comment made during the public hearing. These public comments will then be responded to in the Final EIS.
I-15 Payson Main Street Interchange – Draft Environmental Impact Statement
Thursday, October 26
6 to 9 p.m.
Payson High School
1050 South Main Street