The Cottonwood Canyons in Utah have become notorious not only for exceptional skiing but for the seemingly never-ending traffic. To ease the traffic flow, the Utah Transit Authority (UTA) has busses to take passengers up and down the Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons. However, due to an operator shortage, the buses have reduced their frequency of pick-ups from every 15 minutes to every 30 minutes.
A new service, “Cottonwood Connect,” is jumping in to pick up the slack. They are a private company that will run Thursdays-Sundays starting January 26th and ending on April 16th. The ride will cost each passenger $10 round trip and requires an online reservation. Initially, the shuttle service will cap off at 784 passengers per week but plan on expanding to more than 1,100.
Cottonwood Connect will be run by Snow Country Limousine and will service Alta, Snowbird, Brighton, and Solitude. Routes will stop at Sandy, Midvale, and Cottonwood Heights including stops at hotels and public park-and-ride spots.
Alta, Snowbird, Brighton, and Solitude will be contributing a combined $50,000. Additionally, Visit Salt Lake will contribute another $50,000, UTA will give $75,000, and the county will chip in around $240,000.
Council member Jim Bradley commented, “You shouldn’t have to wait 2½ hours in a line up a canyon that’s 20 miles long. It’s ridiculous, so let’s figure it out.” Hopefully, this new ride service will be the solution to the issue that ails tourists and locals alike.