UTA Five-Year Service Plan FAQs


Here are some of the most common questions we get asked. Click the question or the ▹ button to see each question's answer. 

Please check back as we update this page as we receive questions from the community.

The Five-Year Service Plan (“FYSP”) guides how UTA’s transit services will improve, adapt, and change over the coming five years and beyond. The Five-Year Service Plan is a dynamic guide for UTA’s near-term future. It reflects UTA’s intended service based on the best information available. The Plan also allows local decision-makers to evaluate and plan public transportation services and make recommendations to guide the day-to-day operations. The Five-Year Service Plan covers all UTA transit services that don’t involve major capital construction projects.

Our region is growing rapidly. Where and how we grow impacts the transportation network. The Five-Year Service Plan helps us respond to that growth proactively and focus on service.

The path ahead for public transit has many partners and many moving parts. UTA conducts this process in four phases: 1. Strategic Planning: Looks long-range and high-level. Coordinates with regional transportation plans and looks ahead 30 years 2. Service Planning: looks ahead five years and develops the Five-Year Service Plan. 3. Operations Planning: Translates service changes into guidance for transit operations. 4. Implementation: all final transit service changes become active on one of UTA’s Change Days, which occur every April, August, and December. The Five-Year Service Plan falls under Phase 2: Service Planning. However, it is only one part of a larger process. Each phase coordinates with the other three phases to create a consistent set of plans for the path ahead.

No. The 2021-2025 Five-Year Service Plan was adopted in 2021, and more information can be found here: https://arcg.is/15HvbS. UTA updates the Five-Year Service Plan every two years to incorporate the best available information.

UTA would like your input to help develop the Five-Year Service Plan and the vision beyond five years. Learn more about the Five-Year Service Plan and get involved by leaving comments, submitting the transit needs survey, signing up for email updates, and participating in the upcoming public comment period. Visit rideuta.com/FYSP to get involved, ask questions, and stay in touch. The survey will take about 10 minutes and asks about community priorities and values related to transit service, including bus, TRAX, and FrontRunner.

Because UTA reads and reviews all stakeholder, rider, and resident comments regarding service as part of each update to the Five-Year Service Plan. Even if we aren’t able to implement your suggestion immediately, it may become part of a future plan. In addition, we rely on “eyes on the ground” to notice details about our system and welcome new insights that we receive from our riders.

UTA, like many other places nationwide, is experiencing significant staffing shortages. We simply don’t have enough bus drivers to drive the routes we operated prior to December 2022. We can’t provide the same level of service to communities without enough bus drivers. We are working to increase operator incentives and recruiting efforts now. But that means we have to make several emergency bus service adjustments on December Change Day, impacting Weber, Davis, and Salt Lake counties and service to Summit County. Read more about the emergency changes in December, including how UTA plans to address operator shortages: rideuta.com/ChangeDay.

This doesn’t involve the gondola at all. The Five-Year Service Plan and UTA service changes in general, are separate from the Utah Department of Transportation. The Little Cottonwood Canyon Transportation study, which the gondola is a part of, is a separate effort being led by UDOT.

The Five-Year Service Plan sets out a plan for the future and guides decision-making. It does not mean that a specific service change or increase is happening yet. Many factors influence UTA’s plans and ability to deliver service. However, the Five-Year Plan provides us with a forward-looking plan so we can be prepared should circumstances allow for service improvements.

Each proposed concept in the proposed initial draft Plan is subject to change. This is the draft framework upon which the Five-Year Service Plan is built, updated, and refined before anything is adopted or implemented. We are in the initial draft phase of the Plan, so these proposed components aren’t set in stone and will undergo revisions and changes based on community feedback and other inputs. Give us your feedback on the draft plan here and fill out the survey!

The Planning team evaluates transit service and seeks to deliver transit service that serves the most people the best – this includes looking at factors such as population and employment density; service to communities that rely on transit the most; favorable market segments; street connectivity; rider and employee feedback; upcoming transit projects; and more. This sometimes results in reallocating resources to better serve the community as a whole. UTA also has finite resources and budgets and is limited by ongoing impacts, including staffing shortages and the COVID-19 pandemic. We know that cutting service has real impacts on real people. Therefore, we carefully consider any potential change’s operational cost and feasibility.

UTA has launched a website for the Five-Year Service Plan that is a repository of the latest information at http://rideuta.com/FYSP. The website is constantly being updated, so please check back regularly.

Click here to return to the Five-Year Service Plan website.