Banner reading: Funding Our Future - Better Transit Service

What's new?

December 4: The Council received a briefing on the draft interlocal agreement and reviewed the attached chart, which explains the structure and different parts of the agreement needed before service implementation can begin.

The Council's requests for more information included:

  • What kind of data will be provided for the Funding Our Future accountability public dashboard?
  • Whether it's possible to "give teeth to" the City's desire to prioritize energy-efficient vehicles for City-funded routes such as electric buses and how much, if any, this might increase costs?
  • How to share advertising revenue from City-funded bus stops?
  • How can the City subsidize fares and incentivize ridership such as potential pilot programs for free fare zone expansion?

Next steps

The Council will hold a continued public hearing on Tuesday, December 11 at 7 p.m. The next briefing will be scheduled once updated information has been received from the Mayor's Administration.

The agreements between UTA and the City need to be finalized and approved by the City Council before February to ensure implementation of new routes and increased frequency begins August 2019.

Chart showing the anticipated addenda governing improved transit service

Where you want to go

The Salt Lake City Council believes all residents should be able to affordably travel around the city, whether to homes, jobs, schools, or recreation.

Although many residents already enjoy access to several transportation options, the Council knows there are also many people who would benefit from additional access, particularly to public transit offerings. With this in mind, the Council approved a 0.5% sales tax increase earlier this year, with $5.3 million of the expected revenue planned for projects that will expand transit options citywide. $2.8 million is budgeted for the first installment to expand Utah Transit Authority bus service in Salt Lake City.

Goals for transit funding

When adopting the City budget for the 2018-19 fiscal year, the Council added specific conditions to the funding set aside for the agreement with UTA. The exact language of the Council's action is below:

The funding of $5,289,492 for the first fiscal year of Phase I projects proposed by the Mayor is contingent on a contract and Interlocal Agreement (ILA) that serves the Council’s identified objectives below (note: the Council will need to approve an interlocal agreement before implementation):
i. Increasing coverage for underserved areas, particularly the Westside but not excluding other underserved areas of the City;
ii. Increasing ridership, particularly in the City’s downtown core;
iii. Building out infrastructure on Transit Master Plan routes;
iv. The Budget and timeline is based on 1000 North, 600 North, 200 South, 900 South, 2100 South.400 South will be the last route implemented.

Cover photo of Salt Lake City's Transit Master Plan, featuring a Trax station in front of the mountains

Transit Master Plan

The need for improved public transit was identified in part through the extensive outreach conducted for the City's Transit Master Plan, which was adopted in late 2017. The draft agreement with UTA draws upon the goals for a frequent transit network (FTN) identified in the Transit Master Plan.

Click the image to view the full Master Plan.

Map showing routes funded for service increases along 200 South, 900 South, and 2100 South

The Draft Agreement

The Agreement between the City and UTA will include several parts, including an Interlocal Agreement, which will serve as the master agreement to encompass the overarching details of the service – responsibilities of each party, cost calculation method, generally the goals of expanding service, and values. The key details about how the goal of expanded service will be met will be in annual “Addenda” to the Interlocal.

In the transmittal, you can see:

  • the Administration's cover letter;
  • a presentation accompanying the work session briefing on November 27, 2018;
  • the draft Interlocal Agreement;
  • and the template for future addenda.

Coming Soon

You can watch an upcoming briefing and public hearing about the proposal LIVE on Facebook or our website, or attend in-person, Third Floor, City & County Building. (Check the agenda for approximate times and live video links).

Work Session Discussion

Tuesday, December 4

See agenda for start time

Public Hearing

Tuesday, December 11

7 p.m., Room 315

Stay tuned for a timeline of events up to this point, potential future routes, Council Meeting paperwork, and the next steps from here!