UTA to offer on-demand rides on Salt Lake City’s west side

Vans are meant to give people easier access to major transit routes.

(Lee Davidson | Tribune file photo) A van for the new UTA On Demand microtransit service opens the door for passengers to enter in Herriman on Nov. 26, 2019.

A tap of an app and $2.50 will get people a ride in Salt Lake City’s west-side neighborhoods under an expanded Utah Transit Authority pilot project.

The UTA On Demand service will start Dec. 13, the transit agency and Salt Lake City government announced Thursday.

“I’m so pleased there will be an additional means of transportation west-side residents can rely on for their commutes, errands, recreation and more,” Mayor Erin Mendenhall said in a statement.

UTA launched its microtransit program in southwest Salt Lake County two years ago. Riders can download the UTA On Demand app on their phones to schedule a trip. The program tries to match riders going in a similar direction and alerts a van driver to pick them up. This service is also available for people with disabilities. The regular adult one-way fare is $2.50, though passes can be used. Cash won’t be accepted.

The trips are intended to be short. People must stay in the same service area so when this project launches in Salt Lake City, the rides must start and end in the Rose Park, Poplar Grove, Glendale or Fairpark neighborhoods. The intention is to help people get to big transit hubs like a light rail stop.

UTA will offer its on-demand service seven days a week, with rides starting at 4 a.m. and ending at 12:15 a.m. Monday through Saturday. On Sunday, the hours would be 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

For people who don’t want to schedule a ride through the app, they can call 385-217-8191.