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Letter: Better, cheaper transit is key to air quality

Published February 1, 2014 1:01 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Lately it seems like everyone is talking about air quality, but nobody is addressing the elephant in the room. I used to take public transportation to work, but that's no longer an option unless I'm willing to add an extra two hours each way to my 15-minute commute.

TRAX and FrontRunner are great as long as you can afford them and live in one of the few areas where they're convenient. For the rest of us, the public transit system here is inconvenient, if it's an option at all.

So ridership goes down, and UTA responds by cutting routes and increasing fares, causing further decreases in ridership and so on. Those who are disabled, but not enough so to qualify for Flex transit, can forget it.

We should not be discussing penalties and/or incentives for drivers wihout first addressing this issue. Let's invest in our public transit system and take a serious look at UTA management, who are among the highest paid, if not overpaid, of any public transit employees in the nation.

Kim Higginson

Salt Lake City