Officials with the Utah Transit Authority are hoping to increase bus service from the Salt Lake area to Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons by 35 percent. They’re hoping to add more ski buses during peak traffic times and throughout the day, and they also plan on adding a new route from Davis County to Snowbasin Resort.
UTA plans to hold three hearings for public comment over the next few weeks in Layton, Midvale and Sandy. UTA spokesman Remi Barron encourages anyone who is interested in ski bus service to attend.
“We can look at all of the data, we can find out where we think skiers are being picked up currently and where they want to be picked up based on riding patterns,” Barron says. “But until we hear from them, we don’t really know.”
The public can also submit comments online.
Barron says by reconfiguring current ski service routes and funding, the increased service can be implemented with no extra cost to riders or taxpayers. He says ski resorts and other stakeholders have so far provided positive feedback on the proposal.
Canyon congestion has become a problem in recent years as skiers and snowboarders head to the resorts after fresh snowfall. Brian Brown works at Snowbird resort.
“The lines to get up the canyon on a good day can stretch very long,” Brown says. “It can be backed up to Big Cottonwood Canyon. Sometimes the lines for either canyon can start on the east bench of I-215.”
Brown says Snowbird supports the expanded service proposal. The resort already runs a rewards program for skiers who carpool and use public transit. He says it’s another step toward cutting down on congestion and vehicle emissions.