SALT LAKE CITY — As ski and snowboard season approaches, there are some new changes to the Utah Transit Authority's ski shuttle service.
Waiting for a shuttle bus could take twice as long this year, especially because UTA is anticipating more people hitting the slopes.
“We’ve got the feeling that a lot of people are going to want to grab their skis and head to the resorts this winter,” said Carl Arky, a spokesman for UTA.
Buses, though, will be at half their capacity due to COVID-19 restrictions.
On a typical powder day, the Utah Transit Authority might send 20 buses up the Cottonwood Canyons to the ski resorts every 15 minutes--each bus carrying up to 45 people.
This year, UTA plans to transport 20-per-ride, allowing for social distancing. Those taking the shuttle may be asked to carry their snow gear with them.
With the influx of passengers and decrease in passenger capacity, wait times for shuttles could reach 30 minutes.
“When people are in line, waiting for the bus, we’re going to be asking people to social distance themselves," said Arky. "We’re going to ask them to all wear masks.”
UTA feels that waiting in safety means arriving in safety, and that will make it all worth the hassle.
“We will get them up the canyons, we’ll get them to the resorts." said Arky. "It will take a little bit longer, but it will be better for everybody.”
Shuttle services start Nov. 29 for both Cottonwood Canyons.