Seems like it's been forever, but it's only been about 10 months since the Utah Department of Transportation closed the Main Street underpass in Washington City.

The thoroughfare reopened this past weekend, although residents should expect delays if they chose to take that route.

From UDOT:

Main Street in Washington between 400 North and Buena Vista Boulevard will have one lane open during the day and both lanes open in the evenings and on weekends. During work hours, from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., one-way, alternating traffic will be controlled by temporary traffic signals. After work hours and on weekends, the temporary traffic signals will not be in effect and both lanes will be open. Drivers should plan ahead and expect minor travel delays during work hours.

To be sure, work will continue for the next year or so as UDOT toils to finish the new Main Street (Exit 11) onramp and offramp.

It is hoped the new exit will ease some of the traffic and tension on Exit 10, one of the busiest intersections this side of Provo.

When the Exit 11 project is finally finished (some time in 2025), the state and Washington City will work to address potential traffic problems on Main Street, a mostly residential area in Washington that could see heavy use.

Land is already being prepared for commercial use on the northwest side of the freeway with reports that a major grocery store and other shops coming to the area.

Washington has also had use temporary housing for some of its fire personnel while Main Street was unusable. The main fire station for the city is on Buena Vista Boulevard.

UDOT offers these resources for those wanting more information on the project:

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A Utah Murder Story Too Unbelievable To Be True (But It Is)


There's a murder story from Northwestern Utah that is so bizarre, so unlikely that it can't possibly be true.

But it is.

First of all, the facts:

  • On Feb. 16, a 9-year-old Tooele boy admits he shot and killed his father with a 9MM handgun. It happened at around 7 p.m. The gunshot wound was in the back of the head.
  • The deceased 32-year-old victim also had dozens of hatchet wounds on his body. Authorities aren't sure, but they think the wounds were suffered after the victim had been shot, but before he passed away.
  • A bloody "tomahawk-style" hatchet was found under the bed of the deceased, a bed he shared with the admitted killer.
  • Seven other people (mostly children) were home at the time of the attack. None of them heard anything, including the gunshots. They were only made aware of the crime when the boy exited the room and stated that his dad was bleeding from the head and was dead (he actually died later that night at the hospital)..
  • The victim and accused killer, according to the warrant, “retired to bed early due to behavioral problems and went into the bedroom that they share."
  • Medical officials said the hatchet wounds on the victim appeared to be defensive wounds, meaning the victim appeared to be trying to defend himself during the attack.
  • The 9-year-old accused killer was reportedly extremely into video games, especially a newer version of a war game called 'Modern Warfare: Warzone'
  • In that game, two of the commonly used weapons are 9MM handguns and tomahawk strikes.

There are so many questions that need to be answered (Where was the mom? Where'd he get the gun? How did the child learn this behavior? Was the act in retaliation for some "disciplinary measures? Why didn't anyone in the house hear anything?).

But the most pressing question of all is this: Are our kids getting so desensitized to violence because of video games that the lines between right and wrong are blurred, even gone?

When my kids were younger I had just one rule when they played games: No killing humans -- if you're killing something, it had better be a monster or an alien.

Maybe it was a stupid rule, I don't know. Or maybe it saved my life.

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UDOT Grant Boosts St. George Connectivity With New Street Crossings

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The U.S. Department of Transportation has announced a grant award of $87,618,600 to the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) toward funding local street crossings of Interstate 15 in St. George at 400 East and 900 South.

St. George City is one of 132 communities nationwide to benefit from the federal Reconnecting Communities & Neighborhoods Grant Program. The new crossings will provide additional connectivity of local routes on the east and west side of St. George at I-15.

“We are so thrilled to obtain funding ... to create two much-needed underpasses in St. George," said St. George Mayor Michele Randall. "One of our biggest challenges is transportation. We live in a city with ridges to the north, west and east, two rivers and an interstate cutting through the middle of town.

"These underpasses will mean less time on the roads getting from Point A to Point B and help alleviate some of our traffic congestion.”

The timing of the announcement comes at an opportune time for UDOT as it begins final design of additional lanes on I-15 between Exits 6 and 8, under which the crossings would be located.

UDOT credits community involvement from the residents and City of St. George along with the Dixie Metropolitan Planning Organization in working toward a unified vision with UDOT.

Other ways this benefits St. George

  • Provides increased connectivity through and around I-15 by connecting 400 E (Flood Street) and 900 South underneath I-15 via underpasses
  • The underpasses will accommodate both motor vehicles and active transportation
  • Requires raising the elevation of I-15 to accommodate underpass structures
  • This project is to coincide with the I-15: Widening from Exit 6 to Exit 8 Project already planned by UDOT
  • The proposed design includes dedicated active transportation infrastructure, which will help decrease transportation-sector greenhouse gas emissions by improving multimodal access, mobility and safety. These improved connections will also help reduce vehicle miles traveled by providing a local option for shorter neighborhood trips.
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Airbnb And Vrbo Face Crisis: The Future Of Short-Term Rentals

Photo by Ivan Samkov:
Photo by Ivan Samkov:

Airbnb and Vrbo might just be in trouble.

Financial trouble.

The two businesses that have made a killing (each worth more than $4-billion) off of people willing to rent out their houses or spare bedrooms around the world.

But the two businesses lacked oversight for a long time and truthfully had little in the way of ability to punish those that did break their lax rules.

In a recent policy change, Airbnb announced it is set to ban its hosts from having indoor security cameras in their properties beginning next month.

Uh, talk about too little, too late.

This morning on her daily vignette on KDXU (airs at about 6:55 a.m.), consumer tech expert Kim Komando said this:

"Airbnb and Vrbo are done, and they have only themselves to blame," she said. "Americans are fed up. We're done with all the creepy hosts, hidden spy cams, bad wi-fi and inaccurate descriptions. Hotels are back -- big time."

If you've ever stayed in a "house-sharing" situation, you know that at best, it's a little uncomfortable. At worst, it's scary, dangerous, creepy and dirty.

Komando said a lot of rental owners will likely be bailing out of the short-term rental business as the market begins to collapse. She issued this dire warning and a little advice this morning to those who own property they plan on using for short-term rental.

"A lot of these home-owners thought the short-term market would go on forever without giving any thought as to what was really happening in the marketplace.

"Look for many of rental properties to hit the market. You just might score a deal."

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The Case Of The Mysterious Blast In Utah: A Closer Look

Photo courtesy Connor Jorgensen
Photo courtesy Connor Jorgensen

So often we hear in the news something like: "We'll bring you more information on the story as it develops," or "as it becomes available."

But the truth in the news media is most times the reporter has no intention of following up. Or if they do, they know that the follow-up news will be largely ignored.

Follow-ups are just not popular. We want the breaking news, not the "rest of the story."

But sometimes there is no more.

For instance, last year I reported on a story out of Northern Utah in which there was a loud explosion in the middle of the night.

Salt Lake County law enforcement investigated an explosion that happened in the Bluffdale area last March.

A loud boom was heard at about 1 a.m. on March 19 by residents from Lehi to West Valley City. Officials believe the explosion occurred "near the Point of the Mountain.".

Members of the Salt Lake County bomb squad and Draper police officers were flown to a remote area Saturday morning after a hiker found possible evidence of the blast, including a crater and what appeared to be shrapnel.

Ring cameras from several homes in the area confirmed that there was indeed a blast, but officers have not yet confirmed whether or not there was a "blast crater" as reported by the hiker.

Draper City officials and other large businesses in the area deny any knowledge of the mysterious blast, with Rocky Mountain Power and Geneva Rock claiming no involvement in the incident.

Authorities for Draper City said they would release more information about the explosion as it came available, but no information was ever released.

Social media users from Reddit to X and Facebook had many theories -- a meteor, a rocket, an explosion from Geneva Rock (they denied being involved) -- but all the theories were just speculation.

The truth is elusive in this case: an explosion happened, no one was hurt, several ring cameras recorded the incident from afar, a crater was found (but no meteor), and no one is claiming any involvement.

One commenter said it was simple "Aliens!"

We may never know. In this case, there is no follow-up.

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