Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Will Utah County Ever Gets it Act Together???

Well there is always news on the transit front coming out of Utah County but usually its it pretty nutty or just plane dark ages thinking. I actually thought there might be some hope when Utah County decided to pull out of the Mountainland Association of Goverments which had a very rural planning attitude and decided to start its own association, however the more things change in Utah County the more they stay the same.

Utah County is working on a vote to increase the sales tax to support transit just like Salt Lake, Davis and Weber counties did a few years ago. Part of the measure will fund the construction of the commuter rail line from the Utah County border to Provo and Payson. However, some politicians don't want the transit agency to get the funds until it is ready to build the system so it wants to put the money into freeways.

However there is still some politicians down there that still have the no body rides transit attitude and wants no money at all invested in commuter rail. This attitude is so backward because even before the rapid rise in gasoline prices ridership on Utah County bus routes especially the commuter routes have been going through the roof. This despite the system is not that good and still could use a lot of improvement.

Of course the main newspaper the Deseret News which is now has a board headed by a developer by the name of Ivory is not helping matters only producing negative articles. There have been several anti-commuter rail editorials in the paper one being written by and Economics instructor at BYU. Unfortunately I don't see any changes at the Deseret News until Ivory is gone from their board. Of course the best course of action is to hit the newspaper with as many well written letters to the editor as possible telling the truth about rail.

Hopefully some changes will come in Utah County as gas prices continue to be high and I-15 becomes more of a bottleneck. Transit will work in Utah County as it has proven with the rise in ridership.
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