Utah County Commission Approves Bridal Veil Falls Conservation Easement

Dec 9, 2020, 8:28 PM | Updated: 11:30 pm

PROVO, Utah – Provo Canyon’s popular Bridal Veil Falls will remain free from private development after a vote by county commissioners.

Utah County Commissioners Nathan Ivie, Bill Lee and Tanner Ainge met Wednesday afternoon to decide if a developer should be allowed to build around the falls or leave the area preserved as it stands now.

Turnout at Wednesday’s meeting was a testament to how much the falls mean to so many people. County residents filled as much space as they were allowed at the limited in-person meeting. Hundreds more gathered online and many of them signed up to speak.

It is a jewel that signifies the beauty and opportunities that set Utah County apart from other counties, one man said during the virtual public hearing. The issue of bridal veil falls comes down to doing what the public wants.”

The public hearing dragged on for more than five hours — largely in favor of placing the falls under a conservation easement to prevent any private development on the property.

Obviously Utah County is growing. We need to be able to have space for people but I would really really recommend and voice my concern about overdeveloping in our wild spaces, one woman said.

The county has owned the falls since 2015. Commissioners said the popular spot was not for sale, but they still had to decide on whether to place it under a conservation easement.

The proposal came from outgoing Commissioner Nathan Ivie in his final weeks in office.

If passed, a conservation easement would likely protect the falls from any private development.

There was not a proposal to sell the falls, but the owner of a recovery treatment center has met with Commissioner Lee about adding a private lodge at the top of the waterfall, and a tram to get there.

News of the possible development sparked protests and a push to preserve the property for public use.

By the end of the night, all three commissioners were on board with the easement, including Commissioner Lee, who previously told KSL he wanted to explore amenities and additions like a tram.

Lee had also met with Richard Losee, the owner of a recovery center who proposed building a tram at the falls and a landing and lookout area at the top.

Losees attorney attended the county meeting virtually and told the commissioners the project would make the falls more accessible, not less.

“No person would be distracted or in any way prohibited from going to Bridal Veil Falls in its natural state,” attorney Bruce Baird said. “The ice climber would still be able to climb it. The birds would still be able to fly. Everybody would be able to see it except they’d be able to see it and more.”

But most rejected that idea, pushing instead for an option that would not only prevent Losee’s proposed development but future proposals.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Josh Ellis

EXPLAINER: How UDOT crews cleaned, contained massive oil spill on I-15

A tanker spilled over 2,000 gallons of crude oil across northbound Interstate 15 Thursday morning, leading to a nightmare of traffic delays along a busy stretch of Utah's main arterial roadway.
14 hours ago
Eliza Pace

East High School evacuated due to bomb threat

SALT LAKE CITY — East High School was evacuated Friday afternoon due to a bomb threat that was called in at 12:10 p.m. A tweet from the school said students were safe and police would be investigating. East High School has been evacuated due to a threat called into the school. Students are safe, and we […]
14 hours ago
Bryan Freeborn works at one of the package sorting machines at the United States Postal Service Pri...
Cassidy Wixom

Making the magic happen: How does the postal service do it?

The holiday rush is in full swing at post offices around the country to ensure packages, parcels, letters and Christmas cards all get delivered on time
14 hours ago
Tooele SWAT...
Eliza Pace

Man in custody to face several charges after firing shots, causing shelter-in-place order

A man is in police custody after firing over 20 shots at police and neighboring houses Thursday. 
14 hours ago
(Derek Petersen/KSL TV)...
Josh Ellis

Woman, multiple cats dead after West Valley house fire

One woman was injured in a fire that broke out in a West Valley City home early Friday morning.
14 hours ago
Mike Headrick and Cindy St. Clair, KSL TV

Shattered glass. Holes in walls. South Jordan man sues city for wrecking his home

How important is a single signature on a legal document? A South Jordan homeowner claims the wrong signature ended with firefighters causing significant damage to his house.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Utah County Commission Approves Bridal Veil Falls Conservation Easement