Cycling Utah Calls for 10,000 Wheels Initiative for Affordable Transportation in Utah

Bruce Ewert commuting in downtown Salt Lake City. Photo by Dave Iltis
Bruce Ewert commuting in downtown Salt Lake City. Photo by Dave Iltis

By Dave Iltis

March 2, 2015 (updated January 8, 2023)  Cycling Utah is proposing the 10,000 Wheels Initiative for Affordable Transportation for the Wasatch Front and Utah. Affordable transportation is crucial for Utah and in particular, Wasatch Front residents in order to get to jobs, the grocery store, appointments, school, and cultural events, and to participate in life in our modern world.

The 10,000 Wheels Initiative for Affordable Transportation is a comprehensive transportation program that would be comprised of Affordable Bicycle Transportation, Affordable UTA Transit Passes, Greenbike Memberships, Affordable Vehicle Repair, a Bikes and Transit for Clunkers Program, and Walkable Communities Assistance. 10,000 Wheels would be designed to benefit low and moderate income residents of the Wasatch Front and the rest of Utah. The component programs could also be made available to all residents.

Cycling Utah would like to call on Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker, City Council Chair Luke Garrott and the Salt Lake City Council, the Wasatch Front Active Transportation Committee, Ogden Mayor Mike Caldwell, Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams, and other local and state politicians to put in place a task force to study and possibly implement this proposal.

10,000 Wheels Initiative Draft Proposal:

Vision: Affordable Transportation (bicycles, transit, walking, and affordable vehicle repair) will be readily available to residents in need on the Wasatch Front and in Utah.

  1. Affordable Bicycle Transportation. This could include through subsidies or partnerships:
    1. Inexpensive and potentially subsidized commuter bicycles for low wage earners through:

i.     Local Bike Shops through a partner program.

ii.     Bicycle Collective ( ) (Salt Lake City Ogden, Provo)

  1. Assistance with repairs for those low wage earners who already own bicycles through:

i.     Local Bike Shops

ii.     Bicycle Collective (Salt Lake City, Ogden, Provo)

iii.     High School shop programs

    1. GreenBike Bike Share ( ) memberships for low income workers through a referral or reference program. GreenBike Bike Share is a valuable and affordable transportation option in the downtown area, but is not readily accessible to those without credit cards or bank accounts.
    2. Create a Commuter Program – Assistance with other necessary equipment and training for bicycle commuting. And, a potential return of the SmartTrips Program (Salt Lake City).

i.     Helmets, locks, reflectors, lights

ii.     Rack and panniers or appropriate backpack

iii.     Safe cycling education

iv.     Trip planning and commuting maps

v.     Bike licensing and theft prevention education

vi.     Bike and Transit Use Education

vii.     Basic Mechanical Training such as flat repair, seat adjustment, and wheel removal.

  1. Affordable Transit – UTA ( ) Transit vouchers and passes for low and moderate wage earners.
    1. Expansion of the ‘free fare’ zone to increase mobility in the Central City District
    2. Return of the Hive Pass
    3. (Edit 2023) – Transit should be free statewide. UTA could be made free for about $35 million. This would help people reduce car dependency and tangentially would decrease homelessness.
  2. Affordable Vehicle Repair – assistance for those in need in order to improve gas mileage and air quality. This is an existing program through Salt Lake County ( ).
  3. Bikes and Transit for Clunkers Program as part of the Affordable Vehicle Repair Program. Trade your car for a commuter bike and a transit pass if a pledge is made to not purchase another car for one year or more. Since the average yearly cost of owning a car is $8876 ( ), this may improve finances for those that choose to participate.
  4. (edit 2023) Create an ebike rebate/subsidy program – this would allow more people to replace car trips with affordable ebike trips.
  5. Walkable Communities Assistance – route planning, housing choices, transit choices, and appropriate equipment for walking as transportation.

Potential partner organizations and programs for 10000 Wheels include:

  1. Salt Lake City
  2. Salt Lake County
  3. Ogden City
  4. Wasatch Front Regional Council Active Transportation Committee
  5. Mountainland Association of Governments
  6. 5000 Doors Initiative ( )
  7. Housing agencies
  8. UTA (Utah Transit Authority)
  9. Greenbike Bike Share
  10. Cycling Utah
  11. Salt Lake City and Ogden Bicycle Collective
  12. Karma Bike Shop – Magna, UT,
  13. Bike Utah –
  14. Salt Lake County Bicycle Ambassadors Program
  15. Local Utah Area Bike Shops
  16. Department of Workforce Services
  17. Clean Air Challenge
  18. Sustainable Communities –
  19. Department of Environmental Quality and Air Quality
  20. UCAIR –
  21. Utah Transportation Coalition
  22. Various Goodwill Organizations such as:
    1. Catholic Community Services
    2. Crossroads Urban Center
    3. Deseret Industries
    4. Coalition of Religious Communities
    5. The Road Home
    6. International Rescue Committee
  23. Community Block Development Program:

For more information, please contact:

Dave Iltis
Cycling Utah
[email protected]

Cycling Utah will be contacting local transportation officials, government officials, and advocates to present this proposal. We will report on the progress.

(Visited 427 times, 1 visits today)



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here