A new bus rapid transit (BRT) line could come soon that would run from Murray through Taylorsville to the West Valley City Central Station — and the Utah Transit Authority is seeking comment on an updated environmental study report about it.
The study is available online at midvalleyconnector.com. The public may comment about it through the end of the month on that website, through email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 801-355-1112.
Bus rapid transit offers buses that act more like trains.
Buses are longer than usual and have multiple doors. Riders buy tickets from machines before entering to speed travel. The bus drivers are able to change traffic signals in their favor and often enjoy bus-only lanes for part of their route. Service is usually more frequent than regular bus lines.
UTA recently opened the Utah Valley Express in Provo and Orem as a major BRT line. The agency has plans for more BRT lines, including from downtown Ogden to Weber State University and through Davis County to Salt Lake City. Such lines offer rapid service, but cost much less than building TRAX light rail lines.
The proposed Midvalley Connector would run from the FrontRunner station in Murray to the main Salt Lake Community College campus in Taylorsville and to the West Valley Central Station near the Valley Fair Mall.
The 7-mile line would include 1.4 miles of new bus-only lanes along the 4500/4700 South expressway between Redwood Road in Taylorsville and Atherton Drive in Murray.
The current study looks at a revised and extended route proposed since an initial environmental study in 2013.
Currently no funding has been identified for the project, so it is unclear when construction may begin.
However, UTA says that after a final environmental study report and decision document are approved, the project can advance to design, right‐of‐way acquisition, and construction. Once funding has been identified, construction could begin as soon as 2020, following final design, the agency said.