RGRTA details RTS transit center plans
Posted at: 10/04/2012 2:12 PM
| Updated at: 10/04/2012 5:58 PM
By: Ray Levato | WHEC.com
It's been talked about for years and now it looks like a new downtown transit center is going to become a reality.
Late Thursday afternoon, the local bus company announced that excavation work could begin as soon as next week.
A new downtown bus station was supposed to be part of the failed Renaissance Square Project at Main and Clinton, along with a performing arts center and a new downtown campus for MCC. Renaissance Square never made it off the drawing boards, but the bus station idea moved forward with some modifications.
One of the goals of a new downtown bus station is to get the buses off Main Street. Another is to give shelter to thousands of bus riders every day especially in those cold winter months.
Back in June, News10NBC got a look at what architectural firm Bergmann Associates said was real-time video of the downtown site. Thursday’s action is considered the final step in the approval process that began in 2010 for this new stand alone project.
Bus company officials also released these new artist renderings of the new downtown bus station which is expected to create 400 construction-related jobs.
Bill Carpenter, Rochester Genesee Regional Transportation Authority CEO, said, “When the transit center opens, these customers will no longer have to wait outside navigating city streets to get their bus. They'll arrive, wait and depart indoors, in a safe, comfortable and attractive facility. This is great news for RTS customers. It's great news for the community. As I've said before, the transit center is a game changer. It's going to change the way people view public transportation and use public transportation.”
The original plan under Renaissance Square called for an underground bus station, but that design was changed to above ground to save money. Bus company CEO Bill Carpenter says the new downtown bus station will be a game changer for bus riders and for downtown.
The Downtown Development Corporation envisions the city creating up to 300 more parking spaces when the buses leave Main Street.
They expect to start digging as soon as next week. Completion date is set for mid-2015. There will be bays for 26 buses inside and the new bus terminal will be fully handicapped accessible.