New transit hub gives direct trips downtown

The crowd attending the grand opening of the new Grand Valley Transit station is reflected in the window of a GVT bus Thursday.

Starting June 1, the route maps for Grand Valley Transit will change. A giant “T,” for transfer point, will be marked at South Fifth and Sixth streets at South Avenue.

GVT celebrated the change Thursday. The new transfer point has docks for eight buses and covered waiting areas for bus riders. A new two-story brick building will house GVT and Regional Transportation Planning Office staff and offer restrooms for patrons.

Since December of last year, the bus service consistently has been serving in excess of 70,000 riders a month.

The new $4 million facility should be a welcome addition to many of those riders, said Doug Aden, a Colorado Department of Transportation commissioner representing the Western Slope.

The growing number of riders in the valley shows that the new facility is a necessity for many and that the $3.2 million CDOT invested in the building was worthwhile, Aden said via a letter read by Jon Peacock, Mesa County administrator.

The corner of Fifth Street and South Avenue has been a service-oriented place for many years.

Mesa County Commissioner Steve Acquafresca reminisced about hunting days when he would bring deer and elk there for processing. The corner used to be the location for Cole Scott’s market and also previously was home to a coal-fired electric power plant.

Today it is the hub of a growing transit system.

“The new Grand Valley Transit Operations Center provides riders on all routes with a direct trip downtown — no transfers necessary,” said Todd Hollenbeck, manager of the transportation planning office.

“This will give the many people who have jobs in the area an easier and faster way to get to work. It will also provide convenient access to shopping and government offices in the center of town.”


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