Save the Dells started as the grassroots effort of Prescott area residents committed to preserving the iconic Granite Dells landscape as permanently protected public open space for the benefit of wildlife, for our quality of life, and for a sustainable economy.
PROPOSED PROJECT THREATENS MISSION TO PROTECT THE GRANITE DELLS REGIONAL PARK AND PRESERVE
The Sundog Connector is a proposed highway on the south shoulder of Glassford Hill, connecting Highway 89 in Prescott to Highway 69 in Prescott Valley.
Its alleged purpose is to relieve traffic congestion on Highway 69 and provide faster travel between Prescott and Prescott Valley. Central Yavapai Metropolitan Planning Organization (CYMPO) acknowledged in the 2013 Sundog Connector Corridor Study Report that responses from the public “suggested strong support for a ‘no-build’ alternative.” Why is this project still moving forward in the face of past and current public opposition?
This is no place for a road. A full regional solution should be sought instead. We understand that a no-build alternative does not eliminate planning the Sundog Connector for a later date. Therefore, we oppose any plans for building any roads within the proposed Sundog Corridor now or in the future. Donate HERE to help support further advocacy for a Sundog alternative.
Save the Dells opposes the building of the Sundog Connector for the following reasons:
The 2013 Sundog Connector Corridor Study benchmarks have not been met.
The Sundog Connector would be a major barrier to safe wildlife movement.
The impact of building and presence of the Sundog Connector would negatively affect the Granite Dells Regional Park and Preserve.
The building of the Sundog Connector would exacerbate the already serious situation of growth and development endangering our water security.
The benefits of the connector related to reduced traffic congestion are inflated.
Businesses on the State Route 69 corridor will experience reduced traffic.
Funding and taxation will fall upon the citizens of Prescott.
The Sundog Connector would negatively impact our quality of life and economic development.
THE BOTTOM LINE
The negative impacts of the Sundog Connector far outweigh its speculated benefits. Rather than building the Sundog Connector, Save the Dells supports completing State Route 69 widening and improvements and developing mass transit and other creative options that better suit the community and more sustainably address long-term traffic and safety issues.Access to the regional park and preserve can be better managed with a local, non-commercial, limited-access road that does not destroy the very land intended to be preserved.
1) ATTEND the Community Information session hosted by citizen group Sundog DISConnect on Monday, November 1st from 6-7:30PM at the Prescott Public Library Founders Suite. Brush up on the details of the proposed project, learn about key issues and proposed solutions, and learn more about getting involved with Sundog DISConnect efforts to protect this invaluable section of Dells-connected land.
2) DONATE to help Save the Dells continue to advocate for a Sundog alternative AND support the critical work of citizen organizations like Sundog DISConnect who are spearheading community dialogue, researching problems and solutions, and stepping up to make a difference for the community issues that impact us all.
"Late afternoon in September, as the afternoon thunderheads were breaking up, a pronounced sundog appeared west of the sun and directly above High Rappel Dells from my vantage point. Sundogs are rare enough to be special, and this one reminded me of a local controversy brewing at the edge of the Granite Dells. Let’s look into this a bit."
"This view of Glassford Hill is just north of one of the proposed route options. The basalt canyon in the foreground is the headwaters of Boulder Creek, which runs through the Granite Dells to join with Granite Creek just below the Watson Lake Dam.
All of this view is part of the desired Granite Dells Regional Park and Preserve. An intergovernmental agreement among Prescott, Prescott Valley, and Yavapai County is set up to pursue acquisition of the state lands. There is considerable concern that a highway here would diminish the quality of experience in the regional park and preserve and inhibit wildlife movements.”
-- Walt Anderson
(Left)The unmistakable mark of mass grading on a hillside above Willow Lake, one of many examples of significant scarring in the area. Development of the proposed Sundog Connector would create scarring like this adjacent to Glassford Hill;(Right)A driver pauses to prevent an injured deer from being struck again by passing traffic on Highway 89 below Astoria. Thoughtful infrastructure planning must include solutions for wildlife impacts, like built-in crossings and conservation of key wildlife corridors and habitat.
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