Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Draper TRAX line essentially finished, reports Tribune

Tribune photo
Here's an interesting story about what it takes to get a TRAX line up and running after construction. Read the story at The Salt Lake Tribune.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Brilliant idea: raise fares

Hey, the system's working so well since change day -- southbound FrontRunner's been on time to the North Temple station two out of eight times on my weekday runs, meaning I miss my bus and have to make trnsfers -- that UTA poobahs have decided to hike fares. Read about it at The Salt Lake Tribune.

A snippet:

Just after 10 anti-poverty and environmental groups asked the Utah Transit Authority board Wednesday to work toward lower fares to increase ridership, cut pollution and assist the poor, the board adopted a final 2013 budget that counts on an already approved 6 percent fare hike.

That will raise regular one-way fares from $2.35 to $2.50 for bus and TRAX trips beginning April 1 and is the last of several fare-hike steps approved last year.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Interesting Tribune story about TRAX ridership

From The Salt Lake Tribune:
"The new West Valley City and Mid-Jordan TRAX lines are still carrying far fewer riders now — 16 months after they opened — than projections estimated they would attract when they first began operation.
"Critics say that means Utah Transit Authority made a big error with its estimates and raises questions about whether the agency can really afford to operate them and other new rail lines." Read the rest here.

Change day + 4&5

Thursday was perfection for my commute. FR on time, the 516 bus waiting at North Temple. And the same on the return route. Only disappointment was no Comet car.

But today, Friday, I'm seated in a Comet on the way to SLC. I'll update later on.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The streak continues

First train to Clearfield is due at 5:31. Actual arrival time: 5:37.

Thanks, UTA.

UPDATE: Got off the FR at North Temple and a 516 bus was still waiting. As I was walking up to board, the driver closed the door and began pulling away. A UTA employee basically threw herself in front of the bus to get the driver to stop so I could board, and had to tell him to wait until passengers had cleared the "ramp."

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The D-News reports on UTA lobbying

According to the Deseret News, UTA spent a bundle on lobbying the past four years:

SALT LAKE CITY — When the Utah Legislature convenes next month, one publicly funded agency will have as many as eight lobbyists bending lawmakers' ears on Capitol Hill.

The Utah Transit Authority spends more on in-state lobbying than any local government entity. From 2008 through September 2012, UTA contracts with state lobbyists totaled nearly $1.3 million, according to figures provided by the agency. On average, it pays out about $260,000 a year.

Another delay day

First train of the morning at Clearfield FrontRunner station heading south? Seven minutes late. But, I'm sitting comfortably in a Comet car.

We'll probably miss connections at North Temple. I'll update later.

FR rolled into the North Temple station at 7:09 a.m., so the 516 bus had already rolled (empty, I assume) and the 500 left as the train was pulling into the station -- that had a number of fellow passengers hopping mad.

I grabbed a 209 to City Creek, then waited for a 500 to my stop at 300 South State.

Again, I emphasize: People were angry at the North Temple FR station bus stop.