Miller Bird Refuge & Nature Park
LATEST NEWS 2/8/22
Thanks to all Yalecrest residents who voted on the moratorium, left written comments, or signed-up for “Friends of Miller Park.” You can see in the images below that:
– 92% favored a moratorium
– Many left strongly-worded messages about the condition of the park
– At least 68 “attended” the January 13 YNC meeting via ZOOM. (There were more than one person at each location.)
– Twenty-four want to join and create “Friends of Miller Park.”
We held a 75-minute meeting with two top aides in SLC Mayor Erin Mendenhall’s office on February 1. Before speaking with the aides, we consulted more than a dozen conservationists who offered recommendations, which we shared with the city. We will have much more to say about the February 1 meeting, but for now can release this statement:
“We had a very productive meeting with city officials on February 1 about issues in Miller Park, including the moratorium. There was general consensus about acknowledging and addressing concerns raised by residents. We agreed to work cooperatively together toward concrete solutions with tangible, real results in 2022.”
Join the new “Friends of Miller Park”
In the 1980s, Yalecrest formed the Miller Park Committee, a citizens oversight group. Based on comments as well as suggestions received from Yalecrest residents, the YNC wants to re-create the spirit of that early group and form the “Friends of Miller Park.” The committee would be charged with maintaining the historical and environmental integrity of Miller Bird Refuge and Nature Park. This will be accomplished through public awareness, occasional clean-up projects, bird watching, vegetation and tree plantings, and educational outings in the park.
Yalecrest’s Hidden Gem:
The Miller Bird Refuge and Nature Park,
established in 1935
History of Miller Bird Refuge and Nature Park
In 1935 Minnie Miller donated the land of Miller Park to Salt Lake City in 1935 in honor of her late husband, Lee Charles Miller. She hoped the land would be preserved as a sanctuary for both wildlife and children.
When visiting the park, you will notice beautiful, old masonry throughout the entire park. The masonry walls, chairs, bench, stairways, and footbridge were constructed by the WPA, an organization that provided work for the unemployed during the Great Depression. These works remain in great form to this day.
In 2014, a 33,600-gallon crude-oil spill was carried through Red Butte Creek, significantly impacting Miller Park. This event prompted the restoration of the streambed and streambank. The Red Butte Creek is the central feature of Miller Park, with trails that traverse the route of the creek.
The verdant streamside covers only .4% of Utah’s total land yet provides food and nesting for over 75% of all Utah’s bird species. The native vegetation in Miller Park, such as river hawthorn, supports many birds, including black-chinned hummingbird, downy woodpecker, and ruby-crowned kinglet.
Salt Lake City Historic Landscapes Report, 2016,
Author: JoEllen Grandy, Landmark Design
This 85+page document is the most thorough and comprehensive report ever written about the Miller Bird Refuge and Nature Park, including historical notes, photos, reconstruction and architectural drawings — with specifics about landscaping, streambed reconstruction, irrigation, etc.
Learn more about the 2018 Miller Park Capital Improvement Project Grant
Learn more about the Urgent 2022 Issue for Miller Park