Keep adding to the million riders |

Keep adding to the million riders

There’s not much Parkites want to bring with them from the places they moved out of in droves in the last 25 years.

But they shouldn’t mind, and indeed should embrace, one big-city institution: public transit.

On Tuesday, an unsuspecting man from Nashville, Tenn., became the millionth person to ride a bus in Park City in 2007, three days earlier than the benchmark was reached in 2006 and much earlier than in 2005, City Hall says.

One million riders in about 2 1/2 months is an impressive statistic in a small city, even with its bustling ski season, and one that, we acknowledge, required great fortitude by public officials in Park City and Summit County. It was their foresight that spurred the Park City-Snyderville Basin routes, clearly needed but not workable until they reached agreements to allow and finance the service.

Now the free buses run from Park City into some of the key destinations in the Snyderville Basin, giving people there the opportunity to board a bus instead of adding a car to S.R. 224 or S.R. 248, the two entryways, where traffic is sometimes nightmarish.

Granted, it does not seem practical for Parkites and people who live in the Basin to use the buses for their everyday travels, like people in New York City use the subways, but the system here is as good and complete as it has ever been.

The most important places are on the bus route, including the three mountain resorts, Kimball Junction and downtown Park City, and the buses for much of the year run quite frequently.

More expansion, we hope, is inevitable, even if it takes more rounds of tedious negotiations by elected and transit officials. Future public-transit destinations seem obvious — the East Side of Summit County, Wasatch County, two places where big portions of the Park City workforce reside, and, eventually, Salt Lake City.

Those routes may be delayed as the bureaucrats craft the deals that would be needed but the Basin-Park City routes should be seen as a start to the expansion not the finish.

Then, even more Guses will get on the buses.

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