1. A resolution of the City of South Salt Lake City Council adopting a locally preferred alternative for the Utah Transit Authority (UTA) to extend transit options within the Sugar House Transit Corridor. Mr. Carlson explained that South Salt Lake and Salt Lake City discussed that it might be to their mutual advantage if they could restore some kind of public transportation system within the Sugar House Spur with all the development that’s occurring in the Sugar House area and the Market Station development in South Salt Lake. Neither was excited about light rail because it goes through a community but does not serve a community. So they looked for a mode of transportation that would utilize the Sugar House Spur and provide a benefit to the communities along the way. The mode of transportation the two cities agreed on were as follows: a mode of transportation that operated at a slow speed, that made frequent stops so the people in the community could use it, that would accommodate an urban linear park (Parley’s Trail), that there would be safe and standardized pedestrian crossings, would require broad local support, different funding options and would promote transit to transit connections. We envision it connecting with the north/south TRAX lines and connecting with north/south bus routes and transportation routes in the Sugar House area. They approached UTA with this idea. UTA has been very supportive of the project. The City Councils of Salt Lake and South Salt Lake entered into an interlocal agreement to do an alternative analysis to study the issue of whether a new mode of public transportation is needed between South Salt Lake and Sugarhouse, what would be the preferred alignment for that mode of transportation and what kind of conveyance would be most appropriate. Fehr and Peers has conducted a thorough study. The public process has been quite intensive. We’ve had stake holder committees that have represented a lot of the interests, the cities, and community members. What Fehr and Peers have concluded is that the potential for rider ship between South Salt Lake and Sugar House does warrant public investment in a public transportation system.
They have concluded that the preferable alternate is to use the existing Sugar House Spur Corridor. They also concluded that the preferred mode of conveyance is a modern street car. It operates at grade level so there’s no platform necessary for boarding. It’s easier for people with wheelchairs, strollers and bicycles. It generally moves at 30 miles per hour. It is much more suited to the criteria the cities established. If the Council passes this resolution it signals that the City of South Salt Lake supports the conclusions the engineers reached in this study and becomes another stepping stone toward getting federal funding to complete the project. The next step is to do an environmental impact statement which will look at the impacts a street car system would have on the neighborhoods through which it passes. The City will have to come up with some more funding for the environmental impact statement.
There was some discussion among the Council on which type of conveyance would be best for the area, a bus rapid transit system or a modern street car.
After discussion Council Member Weaver moved to approve the resolution adopting the locally preferred alternative for the Utah Transit Authority to extend transit options within the Sugar House Spur.
MOTION: John Weaver
SECOND: LeRoy Turner
Roll Call Vote: