Zion finds no significant impact for south entrance fee station reconfiguration

Zion National Park south entrance sign and monument, Zion National Park, Utah, date not specified | Photo courtesy of Zion National Park, St. George News

SPRINGDALE— The National Park Service announced Monday that the Finding of No Significant Impact has been signed for the South Entrance Fee Station Reconfiguration project.

After performing an environmental assessment to determine environmental impacts and alternative actions, it has been determined that the South Entrance Fee Station Reconfiguration Project will have no significant impact on scientific, cultural, historical or environmental characteristics, according to the FONSI release.

Read more: Zion National Park officials release plan for south entrance redesign, invite public comments

The only impact of the project will be on visitor use and experience during the time of the construction, which will inevitably cause closures, traffic and noise during the 240-day construction project, after which the new station is projected to benefit visitor experience by reducing traffic and wait times as well as improve employee safety.

“We look forward to implementing this project to enhance visitor service and provide for employee safety in this area of concentrated automobile traffic,” Zion National Park Superintendent Jeff Bradybaugh said in a press release.

The project is expected to reduce park entry wait times for vehicular traffic, reduce traffic congestion, develop a renewable energy source, improve winter road conditions and improve employee safety by keeping them in the booths instead of walking up to cars.

In order to bring this about, in alignment with Alternative B of the environmental assessment, the reconfiguration of the south entrance fee station would involve restructuring the roadway entering and exiting the park to expedite traffic and building additional fee booths, traffic islands and a vehicle entry lane.

It would also incorporate a new employee parking lot for those who work at the fee stations. A shade structure would be built over the fee booths and entry lanes with solar panels to fully sustain the booths. Lastly, they would reconstruct two culverts to channel storm water runoff to reduce roadway hazards, according to the FONSI release.

Before moving forward with the project, Zion held a public scoping period from Jan. 30 to March 1, 2018, where they received 35 comments. Then they accepted public comment on the environmental assessment from Aug. 20 to Sept. 3, 2018, and received 26 comments. All comments were reviewed by park management and considered in the development of the FONSI and Errata documents, according to a press release.

The environmental assessment and FONSI documents are available on the National Park Service Planning, Environment and Public Comment website, and hard copies can be obtained by mailing a request to

Superintendent, Zion National Park

ATTN: South Entrance Fee Station Reconfiguration FONSI Request

1 Zion Park Blvd., State Route 9

Springdale, UT 84767.

Copies can also be requested by emailing zion_group_project_compliance@nps.gov or calling 435-772-0144.

Email: mshoup@stgnews.com

Twitter:  @STGnews | @MikaylaShoup

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2018, all rights reserved.

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