NEWS: Free Friday Face-Off: UTA’s free fare day has its pros and cons.

Dylan Woolf Harris
City Weekly

Atop a North Temple viaduct, Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams proclaimed his intention to ride public transit the following Friday with his children, and encouraged all residents who could to do the same.

The air was cold and clear that morning. Off in the distance, wisps of smog hung around the Oquirrhs to the west. That’s what registers as a good–air day, one in which you can distinguish the Wasatch and the sky. But it was only a few days before that the thick blanket of dirty air covered the Salt Lake Valley.

McAdams and other local leaders—under enormous pressure to craft a policy that will help clean the air—banked on the idea that if residents gave public transit a shot, they’d see that it’s not as costly, inconvenient or unpleasant as it might appear. In tandem with the Salt Lake City Council, the mayor’s office foot the $70,000 bill for its Free Fare Friday.

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