April 7, 2023
For six weeks in May and June, Salt Lake City residents will be able to explore a temporary installation of the Green Loop, a linear park network concept that originated from community interest in a greener downtown and a priority of Mayor Erin Mendenhall’s.
Located on one block of 200 East just north of the City and County Building and the Main Library, the pop-up installation will open May 1. It will be a chance for residents to experience on a small scale what it could be like to have green space encircle the capital city’s downtown, integrating spaces for people with an urban forest providing shade, landscaped areas for stormwater to subside more gradually, habitat for birds and pollinators, and green corridors for people to safely walk and bike.
“With 190 trees temporarily added to this single block, this pop-up will allow our community to sample a greener design for 200 East. I invite residents and businesses to experience this unique event, and help us dream up a bold, permanent design for the future,” Mayor Mendenhall said.
In addition to the nearly 200 trees in large soil bags, the pop-up will feature plazas, seating, concerts, badminton, food trucks, and a beer garden on Saturday evenings. Vehicle traffic will be maintained, with space set aside for deliveries and nearby construction needs.
Originally proposed by the Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce in their Downtown Rising Plan, the current Green Loop concept is for a 60-acre linear park integrated into 5.5 miles of downtown streets. The loop will present an urban forest; safe/comfortable/efficient active transportation corridors; landscaped areas providing stormwater filtration and detention/retention; urban habitat for birds and pollinators; and public spaces providing a respite from urban pavement, buildings, and parking lots. 900 South and the 9-Line are the first leg of the Green Loop.
“Community feedback on the demonstration project will go hand-in-hand with our consultants starting design for 200 East,” said Nancy Monteith, Salt Lake City’s senior landscape architect.
The 200 East design was funded by the Salt Lake City Council in 2022. Construction dollars have not yet been allocated but are likely to include developer impact fees along with state and federal grants.
“The streets on the Green Loop have been selected partly for their lower traffic volumes relative to their current width,” said Jon Larsen, Salt Lake City’s Director of Transportation. “These are streets where we believe the downtown forest can be prioritized, while maintaining access for local residents, businesses, and deliveries.”
The temporary park on 200 East between 300 South and 400 South will be open to the public starting May 1 through June 11. All events are all-ages and open to the public. Set-up begins on April 17.
For more information, a schedule of happenings at the demonstration area, and opportunities for public input during the demonstration and throughout the 200 East design process, please visit the City’s website at www.slc.gov/greenloop.Tags: Green Loop, Green space, Salt Lake City Council, Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall, Salt Lake City’s Transportation Division