Voters in Springville City will not only have the usual election items on the ballot Tuesday, but they will be deciding whether to impose an extra quarter-cent sales tax on themselves in order to acquire Utah Transit Authority bus service. Like many other communities before them, they should vote "yes."
If approved, the UTA service would be an extension of Provo/Orem Route 8, running from the East Bay Industrial Park onto southbound I-15 to the Springville No. 265 exit and thence along a circuitous route through the city's industrial park and downtown area. The extension would run hourly 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.Such service has long been sought by city officials and is particularly needed by the elderly, the handicapped, students and commuters. The value of bus service is obvious. A transit system means fewer cars on the roads, less air pollution in Utah County and less use of expensive gasoline.
The UTA also is planning one extension to Springville of its Provo/Orem commuter service connecting with Salt Lake City. However, introduction of that service depends on Initiative A, the proposal to eliminate the sales tax on food. If the initiative does not pass, there will be enough funds for the extended commuter route.
Other Wasatch Front cities have been grafted onto the UTA system over the years and all have benefited from the service, frequently asking for expanded bus routes in their communities. UTA is experiencing steady growth generally, with ridership each month about 10 percent higher than the same month a year earlier.
Finally, any growth or improvement of bus service helps not only those in the immediate area, but improves the value of the entire UTA for all riders - extending their reach, so to speak. Springville would do itself a favor by joining this increasingly useful system.