Springfield to relocate downtown bus center

The Springfield City Area Transit wants the move their bus center from its current location along West High Street. BILL LACKEY/STAFF
Caption
The Springfield City Area Transit wants the move their bus center from its current location along West High Street. BILL LACKEY/STAFF

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

The City of Springfield will be relocating the main bus center of its public transportation services from West High Street to West Jefferson Street.

The decision to relocate the bus center is based on several factors, such as addressing safety and traffic congestion concerns as well as making local public transportation services more accessible to residents, Logan Cobbs, the assistant to the Springfield city manager, said.

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“Ultimately the goal of this is to increase accessibility and service quality for our patrons,” she said.

The bus center is currently located near Springfield City Hall and COHatch and serves as the main connection point between buses and passengers for Springfield City Area Transit.

Buses that are part of the fleet spend on average five minutes at the center between routes, Cobbs said. The center also has a covered space that is heated for passengers waiting on buses. There is also space to purchase tickets.

However, the city wants to limit congestion caused by buses at the current location as well as increase the safety of passengers by making the future center more compact.

The bus center on West High Street is more spread out and takes up a larger stretch of space. There is also more traffic in the area, city officials say.

By moving that bus center to West Jefferson, the idea is it will create a more efficient space for both patrons and buses. The new location will be near Clark State and the Clark County Public Library.

The new center would be more condensed and would be located in an area where there is less vehicular traffic, said Cobbs. The city also plans to upgrade sidewalks and cross walks at the new location.

The new center would feature the same amenities offered to patrons but would be updated and renovated.

A heated shelter as well as an area to purchase tickets would be added to the new bus center as that location was not previously used for public transportation services

The relocation will also bring the bus center closer to where the bus fleet is stored for the Springfield City Area Transit, Springfield commissioners were told during a public meeting Tuesday.

The project is in the design phases and the total costs of the move as well as when construction would begin are still being determined. The goal is to start construction either in the Spring of 2022 or 2023, Cobbs added.

Though costs are still being determined for the relocation, some funding for the project could come from a grant from the Ohio Department of Transportation.

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Springfield Commissioners on Tuesday authorized the city manager to apply for an Ohio Transit Partnership Program grant though ODOT in the amount of $681,000.

Money would be used for preventative maintenance related to buses used for public transportation as well as replacing vehicles such as a medium duty bus and a heavy duty bus.

Some of the grant money would also go towards the bus center relocation.

If approved, those funds could be used between July of this year and June of 2022.

However, it is a competitive process, Cobbs said, and there are no guarantees that the city would receive the full amount of its request.

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