Deadline For Portion Of The Eastern Bypass To Be Decided At Heber City Council Meeting

Heber City Council meets Tuesday, one item on the agenda is may give an extension to Red Ledges on an obligation to create a road east of town.

The city council meets Tuesday evening in regular session at 6:00 pm at the Heber City Hall located at 75 North Main street. Item number three on the agenda is a discussion to reconsider the Red Ledges Bypass extension.

The so-called Eastern Bypass would connect US 40 and Center street. The road would connect to 40 just north of the city cemetery running east to west a few blocks past Mill Road the road will turn running north to south connecting to Center street.

The eastern bypass will be built in three parts, with the New London development obligated to build portion A, the city to build portion B, and Red Ledges to build portion C. After a series of extensions Red Ledges had come to the council earlier this year hoping to get another extension on their obligation to build their portion of the road. But at the March 19th meeting city council voted that they would not offer an extension on the October 31st, 2019 deadline. Councilmember Ron Crittenden made the motion.

“In the interest of giving Red Ledges notice so that they might plan accordingly, I move that: Heber City deny to Red Ledges any further extension of their obligations under their Fourth Extension to the Interlocal Agreement dated February 21, 2007 to construct their agreed portion of an Eastern Bypass Road. Heber City expects, unless a majority of the Heber City Council agrees to a satisfactorily agreed alternative, that said road is to be completed by October 31, 2019, as agreed; or else the mutually agreed condition of no further Red Ledges phase approvals shall be applied.”

The Council approved Crittenden’s motion with Councilmembers Crittenden, Wayne Hardman, and Heidi Franco voting for, Jeff Bradshaw voting against and Jeff Smith abstaining. Councilmember Crittenden immediately followed up his motion with a proposal to give Red Ledges an opportunity to extend the deadline to October 2020.

“If in the next two weeks Red Ledges comes forward with a plan for a satisfactory level of commitment- to assure the construction and completion of their portion of the Eastern Bypass Road by October 31, 2020; then I agree to make a motion in the next city council meeting- to reconsider this motion for the 2019 completion of the road and to substitute a motion to extend on the agreed satisfactory plan for the road completion. To facilitate the development of the ‘satisfactory plan’ I propose a committee be formed to review, discuss and approve Red Ledges assurances.”

Elected officials have since been working with city employees and Red Ledges to find a workable solution. Red Ledges CFO Todd Cates says that the discussions have been productive.

“I think we’ve got some good solutions in process right now. We’ve come up with a framework that it seems like everybody is moving towards. As you know, these things can change on even a daily basis, but yeah I think the committees come up with some good solutions. We’ll know shortly as to what will work.”

One reason why the road’s creation has been delayed is timing. If any of the portions are not completed by New London, the city, or Red Ledges the bypass could become, as Council member Jeff Smith put it, ‘a road to nowhere’. With section C locked in to be completed in October of this year or next, and the city likely to follow a similar timeline Councilmember Crittenden hopes that section A will also be built as soon as possible. The builder of section A, the New London development, was given a zone change in December 2018 according to councilmember Crittenden. He said he was hopeful to get New London’s support to build the three sections together, as he says it would be the most cost effective, efficient way to proceed.

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Heber Valley Artisan Cheese held their 2nd annual Ice Sculptures Exhibition this weekend. Several local businesses sponsored the sculptures being displayed. There were also two different ice carving demonstrations. The event was free to the public.

The annual event began last year when Carolee Kohler saw ice sculpting on a Hallmark movie and thought it would be a fun idea for their farm. They are also considering a woodcarving event.

According to Lindsey Strother, social media and events coordinator, each sculpture takes between 1-3 hours to carve. “We contacted Amazing Ice Creations back in November, and we reached out to local companies to sponsor the ice sculptures,” she said. “Yesterday morning around 9 am, they came in a massive truck and dropped them all off for us, and we set them up.”

Along with the ice sculptures, sponsors receive a sign and canopy for the display and social media marketing. The sponsors decide what they want to have sculpted. After the event, they can take the ice sculptures and display them at their businesses. The creations normally last a couple of weeks. Some will be left in the field and can be viewed throughout the week.

The ice this year included Olaf, company logos, animals, and other items. Darron Kingston, the sculptor, has carved ice for over 10 years with his dad. According to Kingston, “I like sculptures that give me a challenge. Here, for example, my favorite was the lumberjack.” One of his favorite past creations was a 9-foot bear.

Grant Kohler, owner of Heber Valley Artisan Cheese, explained, “We decided to do something that was free and something that people could just get out and come and enjoy. Especially this year with Covid, it seems like Januarys are slow months. People are looking for things to be able to get outside and do.” He continued, “Businesses pay in and buy the sculptures, we have them sculpted, and then we just let people come and enjoy them.” Kohler estimated around 3,000 to 4,000 people will stop by the event.

The dairy farm also offers cheese-making classes and tours of their new robotic barn. “The tours are everyday except Sunday,” according to Kohler. “People hayride over, intermingle with the cows, see the barn and amenities, and watch the cows be milked. The cows will literally go get milked on their own.” Tickets for the tours and other events are available on the Heber Valley Artisan Cheese website: