Audrey Fraizer

Audrey Fraizer

Story Vault

By Audrey Fraizer

The views of the Academy’s new building from the air might be something many do not have the opportunity to see.

And with so much to see from below or inside, the view from the top may be irrelevant.

Recently, though, it was a sky view two people were trying to capture on a windless, cold, and—due to Salt Lake City’s nasty inversion—hazy afternoon in January. PDC Regional Account Manager Dixon Brown snapped stills from a camera while PDC Senior Graphic Designer Chris Carr kept another camera rolling for a live feed.

The helicopter buzzing around the nine-story building in downtown Salt Lake City raised a few eyebrows. It did mine. I was walking toward the office when I noticed the helicopter approaching downtown from the Wasatch Mountains to the east. My first guess was a helicopter ferrying people from a ski resort or tourists getting a birds-eye view of our city and the Wasatch Mountains.

Whatever the reason, I envied the people flying above our drab winter inversion.

The inversion literally puts a lid on the cold air pooling in our urban bowl. Fog and low clouds add to the jumble; visibility suffers and emissions from cars and buses, fireplaces, and industry makes your eyes water (to say the least). The colder the temperatures, the more gunk accumulates, and when conditions are inversion ideal, the beauty of Salt Lake City gets lost in the fog.

Fortunately, by the time NAVIGATOR rolls around, the skies should be blue, rather than slate gray, and the Academy’s building should be a lovely sight from any perspective. The best views are from the east-facing windows, and maybe I’m biased because it’s the view I see from where I sit. But, let’s be honest, a background of mountains is something everybody appreciates no matter how long a person lives here.

The new headquarters of the International Academies of Emergency Dispatch (IAED) is a focal point in a downtown attracting an international reputation and flair. We are steps away from an outdoor shopping mall designed to complement the landscape and within walking distance of numerous museums, theaters for symphony and dance, city parks, and a night life you might be surprised to find here.

The scenery is our crown jewel! Downtown is less than an hour’s drive from an afternoon of mountain adventure. A camera is essential equipment. Aside from the scenic beauty, you never know when you might stumble across a moose or mountain goat.

I hope that you take the opportunity to see more of Salt Lake City and its breath-taking outdoor venues during your stay for the annual NAVIGATOR conference. We are a state of diversity, with a future that preserves our natural beauty in the climb to accommodate an international audience.

Hopefully, there will come a day when it’s no longer bad air stealing some of that breath.