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Survey finds majority of respondents in favor of intervention for Utah Lake

By Ashtyn Asay - | Aug 11, 2022

Courtesy Provo City

This photo shows the Provo boat marina at Utah Lake on the west end of Center Street just north of the Provo Airport.

A poll conducted by Sandy-based G1 Research found that a majority of respondents are in favor of intervention for the improvement of Utah Lake.

The survey was commissioned by Lake Restoration Solutions, the proponents of the Utah Lake Restoration Project, and randomly sampled 618 Utah County residents from June 1-13 through a live agent, text to mobile and online panel interviews.

When asked “Which one of the following statements more closely aligns with your viewpoint,” 76.6% of respondents selected “Utah Lake is not a healthy lake and there are things that can and should be done to improve it.”

Another 15.3% of respondents selected “Utah Lake is doing fine in its current state. Leave it alone and let nature take its course,” and 8.1% of respondents either selected “Don’t know” or refused to answer the question.

Nearly all of the Utah County residents surveyed (93%) responded that they prefer other lakes in Utah over Utah Lake, despite its proximity. When asked the last time they visited or recreated at Utah Lake, 44.9% responded either this year or last year, and 45.1% responded either two to three years ago or longer than three years ago.

“Restoring Utah Lake and providing better recreational opportunities are critical priorities for Utahns, and this poll shows Utah County residents clearly support the effort,” Jon Benson, president of Lake Restoration Solutions, said in a press release. “These results confirm the support we hear in conversations with so many in our community around Utah Lake and reaffirm the state legislature’s concept for providing a comprehensive solution to restore and enhance Utah Lake.

Respondents were also asked their stance on the Utah Lake Restoration Project, a proposal to dredge Utah Lake in order to create man-made islands for residential, estuary and recreational use.

“The Utah Lake Restoration Project proposes making the lake deeper and cooler, restoring wetland vegetation and wildlife habitat, creating miles of new shoreline and beaches for recreation, and establishing waterfront communities,” reads the survey conducted by G1 Research. “The cost of these improvements would be in the billions. The sale of property on some islands is proposed to fund the entire restoration effort without a tax increase. Based on that description, would you say that you generally OPPOSE or SUPPORT the Utah Lake Restoration Project?”

Per the poll’s findings, 34.6% of respondents selected that they strongly supported the project, 25.5% selected that they somewhat supported the project and 7.4% selected that they leaned toward supporting the project.

On the flip side, 5% of respondents were undecided, 8.1% were somewhat opposed or leaned toward opposing the project and 20.3% selected that they strongly oppose the project.

“We learned that support for the Utah Lake Restoration Project is strong regardless of age, gender, political party, income, marital status, or education level. It’s so refreshing to see this broad support,” Benson said. “These results are a great starting point, but we want to keep building on this support as we go forward in designing the project. The Utah Lake Restoration Project can be something that Utahns can be proud of for generations.”

According to a survey summary compiled by G1, this survey had a margin of error of +/-4.0 percentage points in 95 out of 100 cases. Results were weighted.

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