County approves canal changes despite residents’ discontent

Most of the overflow crowd at Tuesday night’s joint Cache County and Logan municipal council meeting left unsatisfied because they want the Logan-Hyde Park-Smithfield Canal uncovered in the Lundstrom Park area.

The County Council, which manages the now $27 million contract with the federal government, voted to go ahead with a plan to enclose a portion of the upper canal in a large pipe and cover it with dirt. (To see the plan that was presented at Tuesday’s meeting, <a target=”_blank” href=””>click here</a>.)

Zan Murray, of J.U.B. Engineers, pointed out that changes have been made since last week’s Logan City Council meeting.

“You can see that the box culvert is placed on the side and the storm water channel is placed on the east side,” Murray said as he pointed to a diagram. “This does a couple of things. It helps to lower the overall height of the storm water channel and the fill-in that has to take place.

“So we took that concept and looked at that more fully in applying it in the Lundstrom Park area, from the golf course through to 1500 North.”

The council voted five to two to proceed after hearing about that and other changes. Councilmembers Craig Peterson and Corey Yeates wanted more time for public involvement.

Not all of the people went home unhappy from the meeting.

Opponents, mainly from Logan’s Lundstrom Park and Logan Golf and Country Club area, begged for more time to try to get an agreement in place to leave the canal uncovered through that area. Smithfield City Manager and City Engineer Jim Gass said it would be nice to have some of the amenities but unfortunately that would hurt his city’s need for the water.

“This year is especially bad. Next year if we don’t have a good winter I can’t imagine what it will be like,” Gass exclaimed. “We have a responsibility as a city to do all that we can to ensure that there is not one single drop of water lost.

“From Smithfield’s standpoint, being the major share holder in the canal, I think that if there is a regret the regret is that it is not covered from the headwaters all the way to Smithfield, to the last sprinkler that is used on the system.”

Several local residents said it is right for the farmers and cities with shares in the canal to use the water needed. But they also said it isn’t fair for Logan residents to have to pay for that water.

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