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Here's what you need to know about taking TRAX to the SLC airport

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  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    April 10, 2013 5:01 p.m.

    Re: "'The airport line is one that everybody is going to use, whether you’re an employee or patrons that ride for travel,' said UTA senior project manager Jim Webb . . . ."

    Meaning that anyone not living along the Wasatch Front is simply not considered in his elitist accounting of "everyone."

    Why am I not surprised? We pay, same as everyone else, but, since, in your mind, we don't exist, we'll never be able to use the shiny new toy trains we bought you, Jim.

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    April 10, 2013 5:46 p.m.

    "The airport line is one that everybody is going to use."

    Oh the arrogance of this statement. Well Jim, unless you get a law passed forcing people to use your boondoggle, count me as one who won't be riding. Why? Because I can have somebody drive me from downtown to the airport in about 5 minutes for less than $1 worth of gas. That's opposed to taking the train for 20 minutes at a cost of $2.50.

  • sky2k1 Provo, UT
    April 10, 2013 5:54 p.m.

    He could have meant out of everyone that rides the trax/UTA/fasttrack etc. the majority will ride that line, or even that for most people who don't use the public transportation, they will make an exception and ride that line. I don't think it was intended to hate on anyone.

  • BYU Track Star Los Angeles, CA
    April 10, 2013 6:23 p.m.

    @BS Robin,

    If you have nobody to take you to the Airport, absent the trolley, you have a several options 1.) Parking at the Hourly lot ($28/day) 30-day max or the economy lot at $9/day a 30-day max. 2.) taking an Airport shuttle Probably about $10 or 3.) a Taxi, I guess about $20-$30. I'm looking forward to it opening, it is cheap and it goes alot of places often. I would assume the Taxi drivers who do the Downtown to Airport run aren't too happy about the trolley coming on-line neither.

  • Guam_Bomb BARRIGADA, GU
    April 10, 2013 7:08 p.m.

    I grew up in Utah but have lived and worked in Asia and the Pacific for the last decade. I have a daughter starting at the U this fall and it will be nice to arrive in Salt Lake and take a train home without making her or one of my brothers drive out to the airport to pick me up.

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    April 10, 2013 7:14 p.m.

    @BYU Track Star

    If you can't find somebody to take you to the airport then you need more friends. Does anybody honestly park at the airport for any reason besides business travel? The only reason I'd even consider parking at the airport is if the company is paying.

  • BYU Track Star Los Angeles, CA
    April 10, 2013 9:39 p.m.

    @BS Robin. When I took my Family to Maui we parked off-site at L.A.X Having "friends" is a variable. BTW, will you always have friends the chaffeur you to and from Lindberg Field?

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    April 10, 2013 10:09 p.m.

    Re: "I don't think it was intended to hate on anyone."

    No one's suggesting UTA's elitist dismissal is born of hate. That would require Jim to actually think about Utahns not living along the UTA track lines.

    I have serious doubts he's spend the energy necessary to do so on anyone he dismisses so easily.

  • No One Of Consequence West Jordan, UT
    April 10, 2013 11:45 p.m.

    "The program thus far is coming in at approximately $2.3 billion, UTA said."

    Couldn't you run a lot more bus trips for that kind of money? Why is it so important for UTA to be a railroad instead of a bus company?

    When they opened the FrontRunner line to Provo, bus schedules were reduced. Now just in time for this opening they have raised fares. I am a frequent UTA rider but I'm not a fan of UTA management. In my opinion the UTA is not operated for the benefit of the riders and transit-tax-paying citizens of Utah,

    TrAX: the 'r' is silent.

  • I Bleed Blue Las Vegas, NV
    April 10, 2013 11:50 p.m.

    I think it is great that Utah has the light rail to the airport. Salt lake has entered the big time and it will be used. Salt Lake is becoming a big time player and big time players have great mass transit. Back east, people ride to the airport in droves in cities like Boston, Baltimore, Philadelphia and DC. To have this 'service' in the heart of conservatism speaks well of Utah.

  • Jewell in the Crown Spanish Fork, UT
    April 11, 2013 5:26 a.m.

    Having willing friends to drop you off is one variable. Not wanting to have them use a lot of gas is another. I've got a flight out on the evening of the 21st - the $2.50 it would cost to take this to the airport is less than the 2 gallons of gas it would take to have my wife drive me from Sandy to the airport and her to drive back, and means she has to drive 45 minutes less (from south of Provo to Sandy and back, as opposed to from south of Provo to the airport and back.) It does not help all of us, but it helps some of us, yes. I do think Mr. Webb was over-generalizing a bit, however. But probably accidentally.

  • VH1 USA, WV
    April 11, 2013 6:56 a.m.

    I would tell Brave Robin the same thing that I did my students at a school for the blind. "Never depend on others for what you can do for yourself." I explained to them that while their friends had cars while they did not, cars were a major expense. So when they did receive a ride to a class, etc. they always offered more than just the cost of gas. I hope Brave Robin is using all his good manners of reciprocation.

    I'm happy to see the train running. Many times when I fly my children have busy schedules and I prefer to rent a car. What a sign of progression and convenience. I can't think of anything but positive about it.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    April 11, 2013 7:09 a.m.

    Re: "Salt Lake is becoming a big time player and big time players have great mass transit."

    You've just stated the real reason liberals demand we spend ungodly sums on a worthless system that only a tiny cabal of East Bench liberals will ever use -- foolish, unyielding pride.

    How can they hold their heads up with their "progressive" buddies in San Fran, NY, and Chicago if we don't have a dangerous, expensive, useless mass transit system?

    We could save a lot of money by just buying all liberals a latte and a new pair of Birkenstocks, rather than this horrendouly expensive, totally unworkable toy train system.

  • utahboni Ogden, UT
    April 11, 2013 7:18 a.m.

    Now that UTA has finished their Trax projects, maybe they can focus on making user friendly improvements to their existing transportation. Like a pedestrian track crossing by the bus drop off point at SL Central making it easier for the bus riders to access the Frontrunner platform when their bus just makes the connection. Or the bus schedule nightmare on the west side of town with it's many 25 minute broken transfers. Or fixing the street parking sinkhole; mudhole mess at SL central. Or fixing the broken tap-and-ride posts. Or making the the Davis and Weber county Frontrunner platforms easier to access than the current one entrance at each end of the block long stations.

  • Dante Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2013 8:02 a.m.

    All I want to know is, does the Airport line run every 15 minutes (20 minutes weekends) all night? I don't want to arrive back in town on a delayed flight arriving at 1 a.m. Sunday morning, only to find that the next TRAX train arrive in four hours. Couldn't find the answer from the article or the link. I don't care about riding TRAX for a can of food just for the scenery experience.

  • GoodGuyGary Houston, TX
    April 11, 2013 8:47 a.m.

    5 minutes and $1 of gas from downtown?

    How about the time your friend has to drive back, and gas? How about the time your friend prepare to pick you up? When you think you save 15 minutes of your time, you did not really save it, you transfer the expense to your friend. Be a smart boy OK?

  • Madden Herriman, UT
    April 11, 2013 9:10 a.m.

    The reason this is dead in the water for me is that I can't rely on public transit here to run at all hours. My flights often get in at 10PM or later, and sometimes leave at 7 AM (and even when they don't, changes happen often). I can't trust my trip home to a system that won't be running if any delays occur. I guess that keeps the cabs busy at night - I am also guessing they are going to hurt badly during the day.

    The airport Trax hours are:
    Weekdays 6:12am - 9:45pm
    Saturdays 7:20am - 10:09pm
    Sundays 8:30am - 6:17pm

  • MrsH Altamont, UT
    April 11, 2013 9:34 a.m.

    I'm betting the park-n-ride lots are hating this idea...I am definitely going this route when I fly. Awesome!

  • Scott12345 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2013 10:08 a.m.

    Excited it's opening (I'll use it).

    This typo made me laugh: "Under construction since January 2009, the new $393 TRAX extension is one of five rail projects UTA has had on its construction agenda in the past few years."

    That $393 was the best bang-for-the-buck ever!! (Yes, I know they meant $393 million... Just funny.)

  • Strider303 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2013 10:13 a.m.

    Is TRAX convenient? Yes, for some people. Is it cost efficient, I doubt it. It is 19th Century technology spruced up in bright colors. Have I used it? Yes. My gripe is that since the funding is seen as "free" money by so many, they don't consider the cost to the taxpayer as a whole. They have always chosen the most expensive way to do things. I suggest that instead of trains, electric articulating buses on dedicated lanes (where the present track are) would be more efficient, both in construction costs and operating costs. Inter-urban buses would be more flexible and could use the HOV lanes, negating the cost of building the rails and associated support systems. Changes in routes and stations could be made to accommodate future growth and changes. In addition, they can be re-routed in an emergency, when one breaks down, or is stopped for whatever reason, another can be dispatched to resume the route. The citizens support UTA with significant taxes and we do not receive helpful service. UTA’s monopoly forces people to their schedule, ignoring the needs of the public.

  • papi_chulo Ogden, UT
    April 11, 2013 10:48 a.m.

    Most expensive public transportation system in the NATION! Gotta love it! You'd think we had hit the big times and were the thriving metropolis of DC or NY or LA. Nope, we're the thriving metropolis of SLC where the whole state of Utah has just over 3 million people and these other BIG cities where public transportation is cheaper have millions of people...NYC...over 8 million.

  • SLC gal Salt Lake City, UT
    April 11, 2013 11:17 a.m.

    Brave Sir & other haters - if you think nobody will take it, not needed, blah, blah, blah, I would guesstimate you have never been to the State Fair. A public transit option besides the bus is sorely needed.

  • Johnny Triumph American Fork, UT
    April 11, 2013 2:34 p.m.

    Too bad they'll stifle usage by limiting early and late hours of service. And how do connection times look at the intermodal hub? If I take frontrunner what are the odds of a wait for the trax line?

  • Z South Jordan, UT
    April 11, 2013 3:45 p.m.

    In the last year I have lost count of how many times my daughter has driven up from Provo to pick up roommates at the airport. Just because your friends CAN pick you up doesn't mean they want to.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    April 11, 2013 5:05 p.m.

    Re: "A public transit option besides the bus is sorely needed."

    And, it will still be sorely needed after TRAX opens its airport line.

    This run is even a bigger joke than the rest of the lines, none of which will ever garner enough ridership to be profitable.

    UTA collects excess revenues from bus and UTA Vanpool riders to subsidize East-bench elites and their TRAX toy.

    Sad.

  • Yeah but South Jordan, UT
    April 12, 2013 9:17 a.m.

    One of the other problems with this line is that, unless you live along the green line, you have to transfer to another line - and UTA planners have taken yet another opportunity to prove how inept they are. For example, they have the Front Runner and Green Line leaving the North Temple station at exactly the same time all day long - meaning at best a 15 minute wait, but up to a 30 minute wait, depending on the direction of travel. Well done, UTA!

  • ahblid Sandy, UT
    April 12, 2013 10:00 p.m.

    Strider,

    Buses aren't cheaper! Not by a long shot. According to the data from the National Transit Database for 2011, It cost UTA $5.00 per ride taken on a bus and the riders covered 19.38% of that via the fare box, leaving $4.03 for the taxpayers to pick up.

    It cost UTA $2.27 per ride taken on a light rail train, and the taxpayers only had to pick up $1.45 per ride there.

    They spent $34.8 Million to move 15.3 million rides on light rail and $107.8 Million to move just over 6 million more rides by bus or 21.6 million rides. It cost 3 times as much money to operate the buses and they couldn't even move 2 times as many people for that extra cost.

  • ahblid Sandy, UT
    April 12, 2013 10:10 p.m.

    procuradorfiscal,

    There are no "excess revenues" from the buses. In 2011 according to the National Transit Database, not UTA, UTA spent $107,815,451 operating the buses and only collected $20,899,706 in fares. That's an $86.9 Million deficit in revenues. There isn't any excess to siphon off to subsidize something else.

  • ahblid Sandy, UT
    April 12, 2013 10:12 p.m.

    papi_chulo,

    By what measure do you claim that UTA is the most expensive system in the US?

    NYC charges $2.50 per ride for the subway & bus.

    NYC spends in one year enough money to operate the entire UTA system for probably 10 years and that's just the buses & subways. I didn't include NYC's commuter rail numbers.

    NYC is currently spending nearly $2 Billion just to extend 1 subway line about 1.5 miles.

  • windsor City, Ut
    April 14, 2013 2:51 p.m.

    Have been dreaming of, hoping for, and then waiting for this for almost 25 years.

    Oh the JOY of just getting on a train at the airport, like so many other US cities.

    The car rental companies are going to miss me......

    I shall NOT miss them, and their excessive airport taxes.

    Now, if we can just get a UTA bus from the northern most point of Front Runner to Logan/Cache Valley---and my joy will be complete!

  • Sandee Spencer Longwood, FL
    Aug. 1, 2013 8:16 p.m.

    I'm confused. People have posted at least 2 different schedules for the TRAX and I can't find one on the website. Additionally I tried their plan a trip tab to figure out arriving at the SL Airport (had to look the address up-serious?) to Provo or Orem stops but it insisted I list a Provo address and when I did it reported there was no such route. How do I find out what line to take, where to change lines etc. ?