Clearfield Utah Temple
Joe: OK, we need to talk about Utah for a second. For some reason, there is a certain neglect or bad rap that Davis county and points north get here. I know because I have actively contributed to it. For non-locals, it’s the area of communities between Salt Lake City and Ogden, many of which stretch impossibly west that, for those not familiar with the terrain, you’d think they’d be in the middle of the Great Salt Lake. These flat farmlands are developing quickly and are home to dozens of stakes.
Moreover, when it comes to temple love, it does seem that Utah county really kind of hogs it all. Saratoga Springs, one of our guesses, was a bit more of a stretch than justifying a second Davis County temple to relieve the unbelievably crowded Bountiful temple, and the unexpectedly large district of the Ogden temple.
We’ve floated Layton for a while now, as that is the biggest city in this region, but as most of it is clustered around the main arteries of transportation, it behooves us to consider the equivalent of a Saratoga Springs pick for this northern territory of the Mormon corridor. And that is Clearfield. A decent-sized community in its own right, it also has regional and national importance, being the host city of the indomitable Hill Air Force Base.
Beyond that, as one who has traversed its roads toward the farmlands west of it, there are lots, and I mean lots, of potential areas where a temple could be built that is close enough to the main transportation lines north and south, without hugging the east bench of the Wasatch range. I mean, the members near the lake for which this region is known need some love as well. They might not have the mega mansions and multi-million dollar curb appeal that bench communities seem to think merits them their own private temple (looking at you Draper, always looking at you). But the humble saints of central and western Davis County, to the tune of about 30 stakes, could easily fill the far-too-comfy seats in the ordinance rooms of the temple. They deserve to peacefully snooze when the lights dim and the movie screen lowers just as much as anybody. After all, they’ve been up since 4 AM milking cows (probably).
Geoff: Here’s the problem with being near Hill AFB: noise. Do you want a temple enveloped in helicopter noise? Is the Church going to build a soundproof shell for every temple like it did for the one in Manhattan? Hardly. Why spend the money when there are innumerable former brownfields ripe for gentrification all over the greater Ogden area? Clearfield sucks. It sucks hard. And there are railyards everywhere. Maybe West Point is better? Or Syracuse? Or the Howard Slough Waterfowl Management Area Temple? Or the Antelope Island Temple?
Joe: That. Is. A. Good. Point. About Hill AFB, anyway. Especially with the new fleet of combat-ready F-35s arriving.
Geoff: Ha! The F-35. Way to stay on budget, Lockheed!