Jul 19, 2022 - News

UTA to give free transit passes to SLC School District students and employees

Illustration of a city bus that says "Next Stop."

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

The Utah Transit Authority will soon provide K-12 students, faculty, and staff of the Salt Lake City School District free transportation passes this year through a new, one-year pilot program.

Details: The passes can be used to ride on the bus and the TRAX light rail system, according to Kensey Kunkel, UTA's manager of business development and sales.

  • UTA plans to distribute 23,000 passes.
  • Of note: The passes will not cover the FrontRunner.

What they're saying: "Riding public transit is one of the best [ways] to improve our air quality, and these passes will make it much easier for thousands of Salt Lakers to do so," Mayor Erin Mendenhall said in a statement.

  • She said she hoped the passes would also ease some financial burden for families around transportation costs.
  • UTA spokesman Carl Arky said the initiative would allow transit riders better access to education, employment, and recreation.

The bottom line: The bulk of the $379,000 program is being funded by the Salt Lake City School District and the Salt Lake Education Foundation. The city contributed $100,000.

What's next: Kunkel said UTA is open to expanding the program to other school districts.

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