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Lawmakers in the state of Utah favor shiny and new over dusty and old. Many are calling for an investment in new infrastructure, which will cost millions of dollars, instead of upgrades to existing transportation options.
Specifically, state legislatures are lobbying for $250,000 to help complete a study that could result in a $1.2 billion TRAX light rail extension to Lehi, Utah.
The Utah Transit Authority already has the wheels moving behind an $800,000 feasibility study on the light rail extension. However, only $560,000 has been raised for the work, which is why the $250,000 request from state lawmakers is needed.
The Point of the Mountain Development Commission first generated excitement for the extension last year, saying it could generate billions of dollars to local economies. However, $3 billion in transportation improvements are needed before the ribbon is cut on the TRAX extension.
Still, officials believe light rail transit is the better option over improved bus service. After the initial study is paid for and complete, the next step would be an environmental analysis, which could cost as much as $10 million.
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