An estimated 31,000 passengers rode the free trolley shuttle between downtown Farmington and the Lagoon amusement park last summer, according to a Utah Transit Authority study. The trolley was funded jointly by UTA, the city of Farmington and Lagoon.
The UTA study estimates that 31,046 riders used the shuttle, put into service for 84 days between May and the park's closing in September.Closure of the east entrance to Lagoon last summer created a problem in getting UTA passengers who rode the bus to get to the park to its main entrance, off the I-15 frontage road.
The established UTA bus route is on Main Street in Farmington, more than a mile from the park's main entrance. UTA rerouted the line in the summer of 1989 but found it disrupted the schedule and created delays.
For the 1990 summer season, one of the old Brigham Street trolleys from Salt Lake was brought in and offered as a free shuttle service.
Lagoon contributed $6,000 and the city $2,000 toward the service's $18,000 operating cost.
The UTA study shows the shuttle ran an estimated 2,822 miles and for 756 hours during the summer, not counting an appearance in the Farmington Festival Days parade.
Both Lagoon and UTA officials are happy with the service and would like to run it again next summer. Farmington City officials have not committed financially to a second season.
"I feel that the trolley was a handsome and practical addition to Farmington City and Lagoon," the park's marketing director, Dick Andrew, said. "My observation was that both Farmington residents and other Lagoon guests benefited.
"The trolley provided a safe, practical, and colorful means of gaining access to Lagoon," he said.
UTA planner Joe Olsen determined the trolley "was beneficial to all parties. Many Farmington residents have commented regarding the appearance and uniqueness the trolley provided for the city."
Although not documented in the study, Olsen said he believes that downtown Farmington merchants should also have benefited from the trolley.
"UTA benefited by increasing summer ridership. UTA also benefited from improved customer service," Olsen said, recommending the service be repeated in the 1991 season.