Community leaders gathered with local transit officials and representatives from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) last Monday to celebrate the groundbreaking of a new west side transit center.
The Glenway Crossing Transit Center will serve as the major connection and transfer point for several local and commuter bus routes. Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority (SORTA) officials say that they will announce those routes later this summer. Furthermore, the construction of a west side transit center is a part of the transit agency’s larger effort to build more transit centers throughout the region and capitalize on ridership growth on express bus routes.
In June 2011, Metro announced that it would add express bus routes to Cincinnati’s western and northern suburbs by cutting service elsewhere. The difficult service decision was forced after then newly elected Governor Kasich (R) cut $70 million from express bus route funding for Ohio’s transit agencies.
The Glenway Crossing Transit Center (map) will cost approximately $624,000 to build and will be located in the parking lot for the Glenway Crossing shopping center. The key west side location was previously home to a collection of rail lines that were vacated and cleared to make room for the Glenway Crossing retail development which has seen spotty success, at best, since its opening two decades ago.
Once complete this fall, the new transit center will include four bus boarding areas, passenger shelters, 70 park and ride spaces and electronic real-time arrival displays.
Metro officials say that the majority of funding for the project came from federal sources including the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act, Surface Transportation Project (STP) and Congestion Mitigation/Air Quality funds made available through the OKI Regional Council of Governments. The region’s next transit center is anticipated to be located uptown near the University of Cincinnati and medical district.