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The Utah Transit Authority doesn't know yet whether it will receive tens of millions of dollars in extra revenue from a proposed quarter-cent sales-tax increase that will be on the Nov. 3 ballot. But it's already expanding some services using existing resources.
UTA recently implemented expanded Sunday hours for TRAX light-rail service on all three lines red, green and blue as well as the Sugar House streetcar. The new schedule offers service from about 6:30 a.m. until 11 p.m. on Sundays with the aim of making it "easier to access community events and resources and travel to and from the Salt Lake [City] International Airport," according to the transit agency.
As part of the schedule change, the S-line streetcar will now run the same hours as TRAX, resulting in the addition of more than seven hours of streetcar service on Sundays, two-plus hours on Saturday and more than three hours extra on weekdays.
Matt Sibul, chief planning officer, said following a UTA board subcommittee Wednesday that the agency is a couple of months away from evaluating and publicly releasing ridership numbers for the added TRAX and streetcar service but said initial reports have been "really positive."
Lynze Lenio, who oversees UTA's social media, said the agency is working on gathering feedback from the public on what kind of expansion people would like to see in the future, particularly if Proposition 1 wins voter approval.
David Kallas, senior adviser and government relations representative for UTA, said the agency is putting together materials containing facts, figures and specifics on what the proposed changes might include, based on previous recommendations.
The information will be accessible as a tool on UTA's website, he said. It will also gather feedback from the public.
"There's a scenario on there that says, 'If you have $100, how would you use it?' And it gives them some choices and says, 'If none of these choices, what would you like to see done?' That is a way of saying there's a limited amount of resources," Kallas said. "And it allows people to budget their money and see how they can improve their service in their area."
Sibul said he hopes to launch the online tool later this week.
UTA has said in recent months that a major focus of additional service, if the ballot measure passes, will be expanded bus service.
Salt Lake-area commuters also could see some expansion of the GREENbikes program. Jennifer McGrath announced plans to add a station on North Temple, which is expected to have "similar ridership" to UTA's busiest location at Salt Lake Central station.
"That's a key connection for us for both TRAX and FrontRunner," she said of the North Temple site.