Riverton is a city in Salt Lake County, Utah, United States. It is part of the Salt Lake City, Utah Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 25,011 at the 2000 census, and 39,751 as of the 2008 estimates. Riverton is one of the fastest-growing cities in the state of Utah, and was ranked by CNN Money Magazine as the 60th best place to live in the U.S. in 2005.
Riverton is located at 40°31′14″N 111°57′19″W / 40.52056°N 111.95528°W / 40.52056; -111.95528 (40.520585, -111.955271). Riverton shares city borders with South Jordan to the north, Draper to the east, Bluffdale to the south, and Herriman to the west. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 12.6 square miles (32.6 km²). The city is located in the Southwestern corner of the Salt Lake Valley about twenty miles (32 km) south and slightly west of Salt Lake City. Riverton City receives an average of 15.76 inches (400 mm) in precipitation each year. Snow can be seen in the winter, while during the summer temperatures occasionally break 100 °F (38 °C). Riverton has grown rapidly in the last few years, transforming it from a rural farming town into a suburban city. Businesses, housing, and roads have replaced many of the farms and cattle ranges.
Located in the southern end of Salt Lake Valley, the first people to live in the area that is now Riverton settled in the mid-1850s. These early settlers lived in a widely scattered condition along the river bottom in crude dugout homes. Although the early accounts disagree, Archibald Gardner may have been the first to live on Riverton land. The town was originally referred to as “Gardnerville” prior to changing its name to Riverton. Riverton's initial growth was slow because of the lack of water for irrigation. When more water became available, the town began to grow. Eventually three canals were built to extend water from the nearby Jordan River to the benchland areas, providing irrigation for agricultural uses to the larger area.