The changes will go into effect on Monday, June 20, and will impact Metro’s express routes to Tri-County (23X), Mt. Lookout (25X), Milford (29X), Montana (40X), West Chester (42X), Sharonville (67), Kings Island (71X), Delhi (77X) and Eastgate (82X).
The Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority did not offer an explanation for the changes, but it is normal for the transit agency to make adjustments such as this in order to improve efficiencies or avoid service conflicts.
Metro will hold an open house on Thursday to share a variety of proposed changes to the routing of express commuter bus routes through downtown. Officials with the Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority say that the re-routings simplify their operations and make the routes more easily understandable for riders.
There are some 14 express routes that have been identified for these changes. In many cases, the routes come into the downtown area one way in the morning, and depart a different way in the evening.
The express routes are those that primarily impact those commuting into the center city from outlying suburbs, so the meeting time has been scheduled during the middle of the workday so that those commuters can easily attend and provide feedback.
The proposed changes would greatly simplify many of the routes, thus allowing for some stops to be eliminated, while others are relocated. The end result should enable faster and more reliable operations through the center city.
The recommendations come as the region’s largest transit provider is working to both expand and reform existing operations in order to improve its bus service operations. It also comes at a time when Metro is gathering public feedback with regard to what kinds of improvements existing and would be transit riders would like to see made.
The open house will take place from 10am to 2pm on Thursday, November 5 in the boardroom of Metro’s main office, which is located on the 12th floor of 602 Main Street.
In addition to large posters of the proposed route changes, which are all made available at the end of this story, Metro’s planning staff will be on-hand to answer any related questions. Those unable to attend the open house in person are encouraged to email comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or submit comments through an online submission form. All comments received prior to 5pm on Thursday will become part of the official project record.
Following this public feedback period, transit planners will final revisions and begin putting together an implementation plan. Based on the current schedule, Metro officials believe the changes can be implemented by March 2016.
Cincinnati-based Neyer Properties is working on $4 million worth of improvement to a large structure along I-75 in Sharonville. The 1.1 million square-foot building will soon become a “major distribution hub” for Hamilton County while also becoming the largest solar photovoltaic project in the Midwest.
While officials expect the redevelopment of Gateway 75 to increase tax revenues and spark additional investments in downtown Sharonville, the development’s focus on sustainable building practices is what has caught the eye of many in the industry.
“Energy savings at Gateway will average 40 to 60 percent annually compared to power generated by fossil fuels,” said Dan Neyer, president of Neyer Properties. “This is a great opportunity for companies that want to lease space at a building that not only saves energy and the planet, but saves on utilities, too.”
In addition to the seven-megawatt solar plant on the roof of Gateway 75, developers hope to make the structure the first LEED-certified industrial building in Ohio and one of only 51 in the nation.
Once installed in 2011, the rooftop solar plant will be leased to a third-party, through a Power Purchase Agreement, that will operate the utility and then sell back the power to Neyer. Developers say that the solar energy generated at Gateway 75 is the equivalent of offsetting roughly 10 million pounds of carbon per year.
Sharonville officials also state that the successful completion of Gateway 75 will result in a major economic gain for the city, and as a result, have contributed $1.8 million in tax increment financing (TIF) to the project. A fully occupied structure, analysts say, will lower bulk warehouse vacancy rate in the Sharonville area from 30 percent to 6 percent.
Developers are finalizing improvements to the building now, and will complete the project as tenants are secured for the refurbished warehouse space.