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After a year of construction, Downtown’s Central Station reopened Monday offering increased comfort, coolness, and color.
Bus and METRO light rail passengers can stay out of the sun thanks to larger shade trees and oversized fabric canopies and bike lockers, corner kiosks, and night-time lighting were also added.
The transit center’s sustainable features include: solar energy, light-emitting diode (LED) lights, low-flow plumbing fixtures, and programmable irrigation. According to a news release, the City is pursuing certification for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Existing Building Operation and Maintenance (EBOM) as one of the first refurbished buildings for the city.
1997-built Central Station hosts 10 Valley Metro local bus routes, two express bus routes, and METRO light rail service within the property as well as houses Customer Service staff and Police Transit Bureau staff. The $3.7 million design and reconstruction project was funded by a grant from the Federal Transit Administration through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
Kini Knudson, deputy public transit director for the City of Phoenix, told the Phoenix Business Journal that increased area traffic from light rail and ASU Downtown made the improvements to the station necessary.
“With the changing context of Downtown, we wanted to get in line with how Downtown was redeveloping,” Knudson said. “There are more than a thousand buses that go through the site each day, so it’s our central hub.”
Passenger amenities include:
• More seating with benches and planter seatwalls
• Expanded shade areas using ramadas, fabric canopies, vertical screens, and large trees
• New bike lockers and bike racks
• Air hose to inflate bike tires
• New lighting scheme including embedded lights in the walkways
• Information kiosk with bus schedules
• Upgraded security system: more cameras with video recording and monitoring
• Chilled water fountain