Public Meeting - Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project

* If you would like to receive e-mail updates specific to this project please e-mail Victor's city planner Brittany Skelton at brittanys@victorcityidaho.com and request to sign up for e-mail updates.

* Although this project is located outside of Victor city limits, the City of Victor is assisting with facilitating the project due to the project area's proximity to town and the benefit the project would provide to city residents.


updated 03/09/2015

March 5th Public Presentation recap, and final proposal documents

On Thursday, March 5th the refined proposal for the Southen Valley Urban Interface Trails Project was presented to the public at Victor City Hall at 7:00 p.m. and 7:45 p.m.

Representing the city and the SVUITP committee were staff person Brittany Skelton, committee member and City Councilman AJ Linnell, and committee member Lynne Wolfe. Representing the US Forest Service were Jay Pence, District Ranger for the Teton Basin Ranger District, Kurt Kluegel, Recreation & Lands Natural Resource Specialist, and Scott Bossell, Trail Crew Foreman.

Changes to the proposal were presented, and commitee members and Forest Service representatives took questions from members of the public. There was also a discussion of the feasibility of the Pole Canyon Connector trail being approved as presented, and of the location of the Connie's Pond Path. The concern with the Pole Canyon Connector was that the conceptual placement on the map placed the trail in an area that would be visible from the valley floor, which does not meet the Forest Service's designation.

After input from the Forest Service, the committee and the public it was decided that the proposal would be updated to include 3 options for the Forest Service to consider for the Pole Canyon Connector and that the placement, width, and proposed grooming of Connie's Pond Path would be updated as well.

Option 1 for Pole Canyon Connector is the location presented on 03-05-2015, with motorized and non-motorized use. Option 1 was identified as first choice.

Option 2 for Pole Canyon Connector is moving the trail closer to but south of the BPA Powerline Road and proposing non-motirized use only (due to the BPA Powerline Road already alllowing motorized use). Option 2 was identified as the second choice.

Option 3 for Pole Canyon Connector is moving the trail north of the BPA Powerline Road and proposing non-motorized use only (due to the BPA Powerline Road already allowing motorized use). Option 3 was identified as the third choice.

Connie's Pond Path was relocated to begin at Connie's Pond parking lot and lead due west to connect to A trail, rather than due south to connect to the Mike Harris campground. The trail width was reduced from a proposed 60" to a proposed 24" inches, and proposed grooming was revised from being mechanically groomed to not being mechanically groomed.

The updated map can be viewed here.

The updated trail use matrix can be viewed here.

No changes were made to the parking map; the parking map can be viewed here.

 


updated 03/05/2015

Refined proposal available to view

 

Click here for the refined proposal map that will be presented at the 03/05/2015 presentation.

Click here for the refined proposal trail use matrix that will be presented at the 03/05/2015 presentation.
Click here for the refined proposed parking map that will be presented at the 03/05/2015 presentation.

 


updated 2/23/2015

Public input has been compiled, refined proposal to be presented Thursday, March 5th, 7:00 p.m. at Victor City Hall

Download a .pdf flyer for the presentation here.

Download a .png flyer for the presentation here

The Teton Area Advisory Forum has compiled the marked up trail maps and other feedback gathered at the January 13th public input meeting, as well as feedback received from citizens via e-mail. All of the public input is being combined with additional input from the Forest Service in order to refine the trail map, trail use matrix, and parking map.
 
The feedback via e-mail and gathered at the public input meeting was largely supportive of the project, and common themes emerged from both public input and the Forest Service (such as, better connection to Teton Springs, reconfigure the proposed parking area for horse trailers and snowmobiles, etc).
 
Since there were common themes and the comments were largely supportive, a refined proposal for the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project will be presented the evening of Thursday, March 5th at 7:00 p.m., and the presentation will be repeated at 7:45 p.m. A flyer, social media posts, and a City of Victor e-mail newsletter advertising the presentation will be sent out next week.
 
Changes to the proposal based on your feedback will be covered briefly, and then there will be time to view the proposal maps up close and ask questions.
 
** Since the format is a presentation rather than an exercise to mark up the proposal, the refined maps & trail use matrix will be e-mailed to you prior to the presentation. You can then view the changes at your convenience, and decide if you would like to attend the presentation.
 
The hope of the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project commitee is that after the presentation the project will be accepted by the Forest Service and the Forest Service will begin their process of advancing this proposal.
 
 

 
updated 1/15/2015

Public Meeting outcome & opportunities to give input

Public meeting outcome

Approximately 25 people participated in the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project public meeting on Tuesday, January 13th at Victor Elementary School. See a few photos from the meeting here: photo album

The meeting began with Teton Area Advisory Forum board member Basil Barna giving an overview of TAAF's background experience and role in facilitating the meeting and a microphone was passed around the room so that everyone in attendance could introduce themselves. Victor City Councilman AJ Linnell then gave a history of the Southern Valley Trails Project, which preceded this project, and Victor City Planner Brittany Skelton gave an overview of the work that a committee of trail users has undertaken in the past year to create the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project proposal. University of Wyoming professor Steve Smutko then introduced the format that each participant would use, in conjunction with assistance from the facilitators, to give feedback on the SVUITP proposal during a work session.

During the work session each participant had the opportunity to review a proposal for 7 new trails that the trail user committee had developed; the proposal documentation consisted of a map of the project area with the 7 trails conceptually designed and drawn in, a chart listing proposed summer and winter uses and characterstics for the proposed trails (such as trail width, plans for winter grooming, and trail connections), and a conceptual design for a car and horse trailer parking area. The professionally trained facilitators from the Teton Area Advisory Forum and the University of Wyoming had prepared discussion questions and system to rank proposed trails that participants liked, did not like or wanted to change, etc.

The work session took place for approximately an hour and as participatns finished marking up the proposal map, trail use chart and parking diagram Josh Milligan, Acting District Ranger for the Teton Basin Ranger District, explained the Forest Service's role in the project, including the National Envrionmental Policy Act (NEPA) process required to reivew the proposal.

 

Additional opportunities to give input

Since not everyone who is interested in this project could attend the January 13th meeting in person from now until Wednesday, January 28th written public comment on the proposal is being accepted via e-mail and in person at Victor City Hall (either by mailing in written comment or dropping off written comment). After January 28th the Teton Area Advisory Forum will meet and review all public input received at the in person meeting and through e-mail and mailed or dropped off at city hall. Your comments and feedback will be categorized (such as, "proposed trail C received # of favorable comments, proposed trail C recived # unfavorable comments", etc) and analyzed to revise and refine the proposal, with the intent of crafting a stronger proposal that all trail user groups support.

The project proposal documents, as presented at the January 13th meeting, can be viewed and downloaded in the links below. You can also stop by Victor City Hall during normal business hours (8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday) to pick up printed copies of the maps and charts.

The following ranking system was used at the January 13th public meeting:

- Mark trails or trail segments that you like and want to keep with a green dot

- Mark trails or trail segments that you would like to change (locations and/or proposed uses) with a red dot

- Draw in new trails or trail segments that you would like to see included on the map with a blue line

- If there are parking issues or other aspects of the proposal that you would like to see changed, mark those with a yellow dot or a pink dot

In lieu of marking the maps with lines or dots, if you e-mail comments please consider specifying the trail or trail segments you like and want to keep or that you would like to see changed by name. If there are new trails or segments that you would like to see please describe the location you would like to see them as best as you can, using as much detail as possible, including referencing the trails that your proposed trail would connect to.

 

Project Proposal documents, presented January 13, 2015

Download a .pff of a map showing the existing trails in the project area: Existing trails map

Download a .pdf of the proposed trails map: Proposed trails map

Download a .pdf of the proposed trail use and characteristic chart, which accompanies the proposed trails map: Proposed use and characteristic chart

Download a .pdf of the proposed parking concept: Conceptual parking diagram

 


 

Public Meeting - Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Victor Elementary School (43 East Center Street, Victor, ID 83455)

Public meeting facilitated by the Teton Area Advisory Forum (www.tetonforum.org)

 

Download a .pdf flyer for the public meeting: flyer for public meeting .pdf

Download a .png graphic for the public meeting to post on Facebook: flyer for public meeting .png

Download a .pdf of the map of the project area: project area map .pdf

Download a .png map of the project area: project area map .png

Download the 2014 letter from Mayor Zach Smith to the Forest Service proposing the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project: Mayor's letter .pdf

Download the 2014 response from Jay Pence, District Ranger of the Teton Basing Ranger District: Forest Service reponse letter .pdf

Download the 2011 Southern Valley Trails Project Final Report: SVTP Final Report .pdf

 

Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project FAQ

 

What is the Southern Valley Urban Interaface Trails Project?

The Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project (SVUITP) is a proposal to bring new family friendly, multi-user, "beginner" trails to the Mike Harris area of Caribou-Targhee National Forest. Currently, there is a lack of "beginner" level trails in the southern end of Teton Valley.

Victor is located in the southern end of the valley, and the Mike Harris campground is easily accessible from town by either Old Jackson Highway or Highway-33, so the name "Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project" refers to trails that interface with town (urban) in the southern end of Teton Valley.

 

Where did the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project come from?
The Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project is preceded by the Southern Valley Trails Project (SVTP). In April of 2010 the City of Victor, as a local government entity representing all citizens, launched the Southern Valley Trails Project with a public meeting. At the public meeting the scope of a study to look at trails in the soutern part of the valley was defined and the user groups who use the trails were identified.

The scope of the Southern Valley Trails Project was defined as all of the public land (land managed by the Burea of Land Management and the Forest Service) adjacent to the City of Victor, from Grove Creek to Mud Lake and wrapping around the southern border of Victor. 

The intent of the Southern Valley Trails Project was to look at trails, and trail heads, in the southern end of Teton Valley that are quickly and easily accessible from town.

User groups defined were:

- ATV riders      - Grazing permittees / cattle ranchers & sheppards     - Dirt bikers    - Equestrians     - Hikers / trail runners

- Mountain bikers / winter fat bikers      - Skiers       - Snowmobilers      - Wildlife representatives

From 2010 to 2011 a commitee of user group reprsentatives met to define why each user group uses trails, challenges each user group faces, the impacts each user group has on the trails, and common "Victor" trail access points as well as the desires each user group had for improving trails and trail access in southern Teton Valley.

The work of the commitee was compiled into the Southern Valley Trails Project Final Report, available to read or download here: Southern Valley Trails Project Final Report.

On February 22, 2012 Victor City Council unanimously adopted the Southern Valley Trails Project Final Report as a guiding document.

 

What results from the Southern Valley Trails Project Final Report are incorporated into the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project?

The SVTP Final Report noted a lack of low-angle trails (trails that are not steep) and trail loops easily accessible from town and adequate for multiple user groups, as well as a lack of signage to faciliate parking at existing trailheads; the development of multi-user, low-angle trails and trail loops as well as facilitating parking was seen as desirable by a variety of user groups.

The Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project is proposing to create new, family friendly, multi-user, "beginner" trails and trail loops in the Mike Harris area of Caribou-Targhee National Forest. New winter and summer trails, including loops and connectors to existing trails, will be proposed.

 

Why was the Mike Harris area selected for the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project?

The Mike Harris area was selected as the location for the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project based on the natural topography, which includes terrain that in many areas is not steep, for the proximity to Victor and accessibility from the State Highway 33 (Sh-33) / Wyoming Highway 22 (WYO 22) corridor, ample existing parking, and nearby camping facilities.

 

What other City of Victor policies or guiding documents does the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project align with?

As an outcome of the Envision Victor community planning effort, the City of Victor City Council adopted the community values of Connected to Nature, Sustainable, Family Friendly, Culturually Historic and Small Town Feel. This project emobides the community values of Connected to Nature, Family Friendly, and Sustainable.

 

What work has been done related to the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project leading up to the public meeting on Tuesday, January 13th?

In January, 2014 Mayor Zach Smith wrote a letter to Jay Pence, District Ranger for the Teton Basin Ranger District of the Caribou-Targhee National Forest, proposing the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project. In March 2014 the City of Victor received a response letter from the Forest Service noting a number of questions related to the Mayor's letter, and details on how the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project proposal, if accepted, would have to go through the NEPA process.

In the spring and summer of 2014 the Mayor and Victor City Council directed staff to request qualifications from consultants to lead the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project and coordinate with the Forest Service through the NEPA process; due to financial constraints a consultant was not hired. Victor City Council also voted to allocate funding to the project in the 2015 and several local non-profits have committed to donating funding to the project.

In late summer and fall of 2014 the City of Victor began working with a committee of user group represntatives and the Teton Area Advisory Forum to come up with preliminary answers to the question's in the Forest Service's March 2014 letter, to talk about potential new trail routes and uses, and to plan for a public input meeting. Some members of the user group commitee were active in the 2010-2011 Southern Valley Trails Project.

 

What is the format of the public meeting on Tuesday, January 13th?

The Teton Area Advisory Forum (TAAF) is running and facilitating the public meeting. The final agenda is not complete yet, but the general format is as follows:

- Opening remarks will be given from a City of Victor elected official, the Forest Service and a TAAF board member.

- The initial ideas of the user group commitee related to potential new trails and trail uses (for summer and winter), connectivity to other trails and trailheads, and parking will be shared.

- Everyone present at the public meeting will break into small groups and sit around a table and respond to the commitee's ideas, give feedback, suggestions, and share his or her ideas and opionions. A member of the Teton Area Advisory Forum will be present at each table to facilitate discussion and record the discussion.

- Public meeting will adjourn.

 

What will happen after the public meeting on Tuesday, January 13th?

The comments, feedback and ideas from each small group table will be compiled and formatted into a proposal for the Forest Service. However, a second public meeting could occur if TAAF and the user group committee feel a second meeting is needed due to lack of participation or concesus or there is a need to present the compiled comments for additional feedback.

Once a proposal has been submitted to the Forest Service, the Forest Service will either accept or reject the proposal. If the proposal is accepted, the propsal will then go through the NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) process to determine whether proposed trails and trail uses are incompliance with the NEPA federal law. 

 

What is NEPA?

"The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) [42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.] was signed into law on January 1, 1970. The Act establishes national environmental policy and goals for the protection, maintenance, and enhancement of the environment and provides a process for implementing these goals within the federal agencies. The Act also establishes the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ). The complete text of the law is available for review at NEPAnet."

"Title I of NEPA contains a Declaration of National Environmental Policy which requires the federal government to use all practicable means to create and maintain conditions under which man and nature can exist in productive harmony. Section 102 requires federal agencies to incorporate environmental considerations in their planning and decision-making through a systematic interdisciplinary approach. Specifically, all federal agencies are to prepare detailed statements assessing the environmental impact of and alternatives to major federal actions significantly affecting the environment. These statements are commonly referred to as environmental impact statements (EISs).

Title II of NEPA establishes the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ)." (source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "Basic Information [on NEPA]" website)

 

How can I give feedback if I can not attend the public meeting from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, January 13th?

Materials presented at the public meeting will be posted on this website once they are finalized, check back the week of January 12th. E-mail your comments to BrittanyS@victorcityidaho.com or call 208-787-2940 x 14 to give feedback. Your comments will be incorporated into the compilation of comments from the public meeting.

 

How can I receive updates on the Southern Valley Urban Interface Trails Project?

Please e-mail BrittanyS@victorcityidaho.com to sign up for the project update e-mail list to receive all updates. Additionally, updates will be posted on this web page, on the City of Victor's Facebook page and distributed through the City of Victor e-mail newsletter. Updates will also be posted on the Teton Area Advisory Forum's website, www.tetonforum.org.

 

Translate

Important Pages

 

    

Contact Victor City

City of Victor Idaho
32 Elm Street
P.O. Box 122
Victor, ID 83455

Phone: (208) 787-2940
Fax: (208) 787-2357