In preparation for the opening of FrontRunner between Salt Lake City and Provo in December, UTA reviewed existing service in Salt Lake and Utah counties and developed a service proposal for public review.
A report on the public process, along with details of the final service plan will be discussed at UTA’s monthly board of trustees committee meetings on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012.
To start the review process, UTA held public scoping meetings to gather public information and help better understand transportation needs throughout the areas to be served by FrontRunner. Additionally, the agency performed on online survey and collected input via the website.
The data collected during scoping was analyzed and used to create a service proposal for how the transit system should work on Dec. 9, 2012, to coincide with the opening of FrontRunner.
The service proposal was created to eliminate redundant service, provide for better FrontRunner connections and improve downtown Salt Lake’s bus and rail connections and distribution network.
The proposal was shared with the public at five public hearings, one informational open house and during a Twitter chat. The proposed changes were also available on UTA’s website. Public comments on the proposal were accepted from Aug. 1 -31 and received at meetings, via email and through UTA customer service.
A total of 302 comments were collected on the proposed changes and include comments about many parts of UTA’s business, including those areas not affected by the proposed changes. The comments can generally be divided into the following categories:
- General Salt Lake City changes – Comments dealt with the need for faster bus service between Salt Lake Central, downtown and the University of Utah in addition to comments on proposed changes to the west side of Salt Lake City.
- General Utah County changes – Most people were opposed to the express buses being eliminated.
- Elimination of Route 810 – A large group of people want the 810 express bus to the University of Utah and Research Park to remain in service.
- Changes to Routes 347 and 534 – A large group requested service from FrontRunner to Riverton in the mornings and back in the evenings in addition to the proposed one-way to FrontRunner service.
- Rail changes and random comments – Suggestions for rail service or a variety of other unrelated UTA services.
The comments have since been reviewed by UTA service planners and a plan based upon comments received, FrontRunner integration, overall agency strategy and budgetary limitations has been prepared. The plan will be shared with the board of trustees and online with the public Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012. Final route details, including schedules will be available on UTA’s website by Nov. 9, 2012.