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SALT LAKE CITY -- Fares for FrontRunner are going down. The Utah Transit Authority made the announcement Thursday, saying the reductions are designed to be more in line with fares for other services like express bus services.
Beginning Nov. 1, the base fare will decrease from $3 to $2 for travel to one station. Each additional station still will carry a surcharge of 50 cents. That means a person traveling from Salt Lake City to Pleasant View will now pay $5 rather than $6.
UTA spokesman Gerry Carpenter says there's hope the reduced fares also will increase rider numbers, which have been hovering around 4,800 per day.
"We anticipate that this will generate about 200,000 additional annual riders by lowering the base fare," Carpenter says. "Those additional riders will more than make up any difference we will lose by lowering the fare."
When FrontRunner first began service, UTA projected up to 5,800 riders per day. Ridership peaked in the summer of 2008 when gas prices hovered around $4 per gallon and before the Legacy Highway opened. The lowest numbers were reported in May of 2009, with just over 3,700 daily riders.
Carpenter says there have been some complaints over the current fare structure. "That is a criticism that we've had, and we've listened to and taken seriously," he says. "We wanted to be priced appropriately for the market and be at a price that's going to attract people to ride and use the service."