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West Valley City, Utah

West Valley City, Utah
City of West Valley City
The Maverik Center in West Valley City, home of the Utah Grizzlies ice hockey team.
The Maverik Center in West Valley City, home of the Utah Grizzlies ice hockey team.
Official seal of West Valley City, Utah
Nickname(s): degla
Location in Salt Lake County and the state of Utah.
Location in Salt Lake County and the state of Utah.
Country United States
State Utah
County Salt Lake
 • Mayor Ron Bigelow
 • Total 35.5 sq mi (91.8 km2)
 • Land 35.4 sq mi (91.7 km2)
 • Water 0.1 sq mi (0.1 km2)
Elevation 4,304 ft (1,312 m)
Population (2012)
 • Total 132,434
 • Density 3,700/sq mi (1,400/km2)
Time zone Mountain (MST) (UTC-7)
 • Summer (DST) MDT (UTC-6)
Area code(s) 385, 801
FIPS code 49-83470[1]
GNIS feature ID 1437843[2]
Website .gov.wvc-utwww

West Valley City is a city in Salt Lake County and a suburb of Salt Lake City in the U.S. state of Utah. The population was 129,480 at the 2010 census,[3] making it the second-largest city in Utah. The city incorporated in 1980 from a large, quickly growing unincorporated area, which was variously known as Granger, Hunter, Chesterfield, and Redwood. It is home to the Maverik Center and USANA Amphitheater.


  • History 1
  • Geography 2
  • Government 3
  • West Valley City Fire Department 4
  • Demographics 5
  • Economy 6
    • Top employers 6.1
  • Education 7
  • Transportation 8
  • Sports and entertainment 9
  • Key to the City 10
  • Sister cities 11
  • Notable people 12
  • See also 13
  • References 14
  • External links 15


The earliest known residents of the western Salt Lake Valley were Native American bands of the Ute and Shoshoni tribes.

The first anglo-people to live in the area were the Latter Day Saints(Mormons). The Euro-Americans arrived in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. The area was first staked out by settler Joseph Harker and his family in the area they named as "over Jordan" (referring to the land west of the Jordan River, which runs through the valley).

The Granger area was settled by Welsh Latter-day Saints who had come to Utah with Dan Jones in 1849. Irrigation systems and agriculture were developed in the area, and it was Elias Smith who proposed the area's name on account of its successful farming. At other times high alkali content made farming difficult, but there were enough Latter-day Saints to form a separate Granger Ward in 1884. Granger and vicinity had about 1,000 people in 1930.[4]

Hunter was not settled until 1876. This settlement was started by Rasmus Nielsen, Edward Rushton, August Larsen and about seven others along with their families. Irrigation began in 1881 and the main crop was fruit trees.[5]

The city began to experience rapid growth in the 1970s, when the area that is now West Valley City consisted of the four separate communities of Hunter, Granger, Chesterfield, and Redwood. These four unincorporated areas merged in 1980 to form the present-day city. During the 2002 Olympic Winter Games, West Valley City was the official venue for men's and women's ice hockey.

On May 19, 2011, the city unveiled an official plan to create a downtown area for the city over the course of 10 years, building on plans and development that already existed. It will be known as Fairbourne Station (named after Joseph Fairbourne, an early settler who operated a weigh station in the area in the late 19th century) and will consist of approximately 40 acres, costing $500 million to build. The center will include a civic center (consisting of city hall, a courthouse, police headquarters, and a library), an 8-story Embassy Suites hotel, a plaza, and residential development, as well as the end of the TRAX Green Line, as well as a stop on the 3500 South MAX bus rapid transit line. Valley Fair Mall and the Maverik Center are located nearby, as is I-215. Much of the development has already occurred, with the TRAX line having opened in 2011 and the hotel in 2012.[6]

Notorious serial killer Ted Bundy was arrested in Granger on August 16, 1975 on a routine traffic stop.

In 2013, the city police's narcotics unit was disbanded due to rampant corruption among its officers.[7] These officers were found stealing small items from seized vehicles, taking evidence, and placing tracking devices on potential suspects' vehicles without warrants.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 35.5 square miles (91.8 km²), of which, 35.4 square miles (91.7 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.2 km²) of it (0.17%) is water.

West Valley is located on the northwest side of the Salt Lake Valley, between Salt Lake City on the north, South Salt Lake on the east, Magna Township on the west, and Taylorsville and Kearns Township on the south. The Oquirrh Mountains loom over the city to the west, while the Jordan River marks the eastern boundary.


Elected officials of West Valley City as of 2012
Official Position Term ends
Ron C. Bigelow Mayor 2017
City Council members
Corey L. Rushton At-large 2015
Lars Nordfelt At-large 2017
Tom Huynh District 1 2015
Steve Buhler District 2 2017
Karen Lang District 3 2015
Steve Vincent District 4 2017

West Valley City has a nonpartisan, strong city manager form of government, which means that the city manager is analogous to a corporation's CEO, while the mayor fills a role similar to chairman of the board, with the City Council acting as the "board". The mayor is a voting member of the City Council. The West Valley City Council meets each Tuesday night at 6:30 PM, except fifth Tuesdays. City Hall is located at 3600 South Constitution Boulevard.

The mayor and six councilors are elected to four-year terms. Mayoral elections are held the same year as three of the councilors. The other three councilors are staggered two years from the mayoral. Two council seats are at-large, or citywide, and the remaining four seats represent districts of approximately 28,000 residents. Officials are not subject to term limits. As of November 2013, the most recent election was held in November, 2013.[8]

In the Utah State Legislature, West Valley City is in Senate Districts 1, 3, 5, and 12 represented by Democrat Luz Robles, Democrat Gene Davis, Democrat Karen Mayne, and Republican Daniel Thatcher and House Districts 30, 31, and 33, represented by Republican Fred Cox, Republican Sophia DiCaro, and Republican Craig Hall. Federally, West Valley City lies in the 2nd and 4th congressional districts, represented by Republican Chris Stewart and Republican Mia Love. [9]

West Valley City Fire Department

Responds to over 10,000 calls for service each year. This Fire Department has 5 strategically located fire stations that respond to medical emergencies, fire emergencies and various other calls for assistance. WVFD is dispatched by Salt Lake Valley Emergency Communications Center


As of the census of 2010, there were 129,480 people, 38,535 households, and 34,900 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,647.32 people per square mile (2,266.35/km²). There were 38,978 housing units at an average density of 1,097.97 per square mile (682.25/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 65.37% White, 1.96% African American, 1.26% Native American, 4.97% Asian, 3.64% Pacific Islander, 18.96% from other races, and 3.85% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 33.13% of the population.

There were 38,535 households out of which 47.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.3% were married couples living together, 13.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 19.6% were non-families. 14.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 3.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.36 and the average family size was 3.71.

In the city the population was spread out with 33.7% under the age of 18, 12.9% from 18 to 24, 30.7% from 25 to 44, 17.4% from 45 to 64, and 5.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 27 years. For every 100 females there were 102.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $45,773, and the median income for a family was $48,593. Males had a median income of $32,116 versus $22,693 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,031. About 6.7% of families and 8.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.0% of those under age 18 and 3.5% of those age 65 or over.

A stake center of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in West Valley, Utah.


Companies based in West Valley City include, CR England, FranklinCovey, and USANA Health Sciences.

Top employers

According to the City's 2011 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,[13] the top employers in the city are:

# Employer # of Employees
1 Discover Financial 3,200
2 United Parcel Service 1,530
3 Verizon Wireless 1,390
4 Central Refrigerated Service 1,222
5 ATK 993
6 Zions Bank Data 954
7 Walmart 854
8 CR England 614
9 ADP 603
10 USANA Health Sciences 568
11 Jacobsen Construction 549
12 InterContinental Hotels Group 537
13 Pride Transport 496
14 Wheeler CAT 444
15 MediaOne Real Estate 425
16 Pioneer Valley Hospital 406
17 Optum 350
18 Zions Bank Commercial 338
19 311
20 FranklinCovey 308
21 Freightliner of Utah 302
22 Frito-Lay 300
23 Coventry Health Care 273
24 Parker Hannifin 267
25 YRC Worldwide 265


The city lies in the Granite School District. It has 21 elementary schools, 4 junior high schools, and 2 high schools - Granger, which opened in 1958, and Hunter, which opened in 1990. The city is also the location of East Hollywood High School, a charter school specializing in film education.


A continuous-flow intersection on the Bangerter Highway in West Valley City.

West Valley City is on the same address grid system as Salt Lake City, and therefore also follows the same street numbering system. I-215 runs through eastern portions of the city parallel to I-15, which lies farther east of the city. The SR-201 freeway lies along the northern border with Salt Lake City and continues west into Magna as an expressway. Bangerter Highway, which runs south from Salt Lake City International Airport, traverses the approximate center of the city as well on its way to serving the rapidly growing western and southern ends of the valley. The Mountain View Corridor will also run through the western portion of the city. The city also is served by several bus routes operated by the Utah Transit Authority, and an intermodal transportation hub located in the city center near Valley Fair Mall and the Maverik Center. In addition to local bus routes, the West Valley Intermodal Hub is serviced by TRAX light rail and MAX bus rapid transit (BRT) lines. The 3500 South MAX BRT line began service in 2008[14] and the TRAX Green Line to the intermodal hub was completed and began service in 2011.[15]

Sports and entertainment

Rush playing at the USANA Amphitheatre in 2007.

West Valley City is home to the Maverik Center and the Utah Grizzlies of the ECHL. It is also home to the Utah Cultural Celebration Center, Stonebridge Golf Course, Westridge Golf Course, Rocky Mountain Raceways, USANA Amphitheatre, Hale Centre Theatre, and the Valley Fair Mall. WVC is also home to The Drive-in.

Key to the City

West Valley City has presented the Key to the city to several visiting dignitaries. Past recipients have included Mayor Yeah Samake of Ouelessebougou, Mali; Governor of Chiapas Juan Sabines Guerrero; and United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.[16] The key was awarded to Tongan Queen Mother Halaevalu Mataʻaho ʻAhomeʻe on July 28, 2011, when she visited the city for the rededication of the Tongan United Methodist Church.[16] It was also presented by Mayor Mike Winder on December 14, 2011 to Axl Rose of Guns N Roses when they performed in the Maverik Center the day after it was announced that the band was to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.[17]

Sister cities

West Valley City has a sister city, as designated by Sister Cities International:

Notable people

See also


  1. ^ "American FactFinder".  
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names".  
  3. ^ Utah Trend Report 2: State and Complete Places (Sub-state 2010 Census Data). Missouri Census Data Center. Accessed 2011-02-26.
  4. ^ Jenson, Andrew. Encyclopedic History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1941) p. 295
  5. ^ Jenson. Encyclopedic History. p. 346
  6. ^ New name for WVC project: Fairbourne Station. The Salt Lake Tribune. May 19, 2011.
  7. ^ Jack Healy, "A ‘Pandora’s Box of Problems’ From a Police Shooting and Drugs in a Utah Town", The New York Times, May 17, 2013.
  8. ^ Manson, Pamela (5 November 2013). "Bigelow wins West Valley City mayor’s race by large margin". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 19 November 2013. 
  9. ^ "Utah State Legislature". Retrieved June 9, 2015. 
  10. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  11. ^ "CENSUS OF POPULATION AND HOUSING (1790-2000)".  
  12. ^ Census number enumerated in 1980 prior to incorporation as West Valley CDP.
  13. ^ "City of West Valley City CAFR". Retrieved 2012-11-11. 
  14. ^ Warburton, Nicole (3 Feb 2008). "UTA plans bus rapid-transit line".  
  15. ^ Fidel, Steve (1 Oct 2010). "2011 completion date for two TRAX lines announced".  
  16. ^ a b "Tonga’s Queen Mother coming to West Valley City to rededicate Methodist church".  
  17. ^
  18. ^ [3]
  19. ^ [4]

External links

  • West Valley City official website
  • Chamber of Commerce/Tourism website
  • The Oquirrh Times newspaper - West Valley News, Magna Times & Kearns Post Newspapers combined

West Valley City travel guide from Wikivoyage

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