A new downtown Salt Lake City TRAX station opened Tuesday in a move that officials say will boost access in the heart of Utah’s capital.
The new stop, located on Main Street between 600 South and 700 South, will serve all light rail lines and has long been part of the Utah Transit Authority’s plans for the system. It will not be included in downtown’s free fare zone.
“I couldn’t be more excited about this new station,” Mayor Erin Mendenhall said in a news release. “It’s a stone’s throw from three neighborhoods and will serve as a bridge to and from downtown, providing even more access to opportunity.”
Expanding public transit, she said, plays an important role in creating equitable economic development in the city.
The 600 South Station originally was slated to open earlier this year, UTA spokesperson Carl Arky said, but supply chain issues kicked the unveiling to the summer.
It sits about two blocks south of the Courthouse Station and four blocks from the 900 South Station.
Given the new station’s proximity to the courthouse stop, Christopher Stout, co-founder of the Utah Transit Riders Union, is not convinced the system needs the 600 South platform at this point.
“It’s probably a little premature to be putting it in,” Stout said. But the stop likely will be in high demand, he added, when the block that used to be home to a large Sears store — near 800 South between Main and State streets — is redeveloped.
Stout lauded the city’s efforts in building the stop and creating transit options for residents.
City officials wanted the new station because the area is sprouting new homes and offices.
UTA, the city’s Redevelopment Agency and private developers pooled funds to pay for the $3.4 million station.
“This project was truly one of collaboration. Local government agencies and developers were brought together by a shared goal to address the evolving transportation needs of our rapidly growing city, and the Wasatch Front at large,” Carlton Christensen, head of UTA’s board said in the release. “It’s incredibly exciting to see this project come to fruition.”
The new station includes public artwork titled “The Crossing,” created by Utah artist Jiyoun Lee-Lodge.