The planned facelift for Kelowna’s downtown transit exchange will be unveiled for the public Thursday.
The City of Kelowna, BC Transit and design consultants VIA Architecture and MMM Group will host an open house March 13 on Queensway, in front of City Hall.
A $5.6-million improvement of the Queensway transit exchange, as well as road upgrades in the area is slated to begint this summer as part of the second and third phases of the RapidBus project.
The city says the improvements will provide ease of transfer with amenities to provide a comfortable and convenient environment for transit riders, operators and security personnel. Completion of the work is scheduled for September 2014.
Features of the revamped exchange will include:
• A new all-weather structure on the existing bus island platform.
• A new permanent structure for bus operator facilities and a security office that provides surveillance of the entire site.
• New sidewalks, lighting, plantings, signs and public art
• New RapidBus stops between Pandosy and Water Streets
• A Roundabout at the intersection of Water Street and Queensway Avenue.
The open house will be held Thursday, from noon to 5:30 p.m.
The public is invited to view the preferred design concept for improved transit amenities and road infrastructure on Queensway between Ellis and Water Streets. Information about service changes during construction this summer, including a temporary transit exchange southbound on Ellis Street between Doyle and Bernard Avenue, will also be available.
A number of long-range city planning initiatives form the basis of the design for thie area, including the recently adopted Downtown Plan, Kelowna’s 2030 Official Community Plan and the Transit Future Plan.
Kelowna RapidBus is a partnership between Transport Canada, the BC Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, the City of Kelowna, District of West Kelowna, the Westbank First Nation and BC Transit.
In total, the project will receive up to $46 million from federal, provincial and local partners, with Ottawa contributing up to $10.9 million from the Building Canada Fund and another $6 million from the Gas Tax Fund. The province is providing a total of $23.9 million, while Kelowna is putting in $5.2 million and West Kelowna is contributing land for the new bus system.
Rapid Bus will eventually move bus riders quickly between Westbank in West Kelonwa and the UBCO campus via downtowm Kelowna.
For more information about the project, go to www.kelownarapidbus.ca.