Category Archives: sbx bus rapid transit

Pep Rally Celebrates sbX Completion

New Omnitrans Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Service Launches April 28

sbX vehicle delivers riders to a pep rally celebrating the completion of the Omnitrans new bus rapid transit line.

sbX vehicle delivers riders to a pep rally celebrating the completion of the Omnitrans new bus rapid transit line.

With band playing, cheerleaders chanting, banners waving and over 200 people cheering, Omnitrans celebrated the completion of the sbX bus rapid transit line pep-rally style on April 22 in a ceremony adjacent to the line’s civic center station.   The new 16-mile BRT line begins passenger service on Monday, April 28, offering free rides through May 2nd.

sbX vehicle delivers riders to a pep rally celebrating the completion of the Omnitrans new bus rapid transit line.The sbX Green Line includes over five miles of dedicated lanes, 16 station locations, and four park-and-ride lots. It serves major activity centers in Loma Linda and San Bernardino including two hospitals, two universities, numerous trade schools, city and county government centers, and employment centers, along with major shopping, hospitality and entertainment venues.

FTA Region IX Administrator Leslie Rogers prepares to cut into a custom cake celebrating the completion of the sbX rapid transit line as local dignitaries look on. (From left, Loma Linda Councilmember Ronald Dailey, San Bernardino Councilmember Benito Barrios, event Emcee Lacey Kendall, Rogers, San Bernardino Mayor Carey Davis, Omnitrans CEO Scott Graham.)

FTA Region IX Administrator Leslie Rogers prepares to cut into a custom cake celebrating the completion of the sbX rapid transit line as local dignitaries look on. (From left, Loma Linda Councilmember Ronald Dailey, San Bernardino Councilmember Benito Barrios, event Emcee Lacey Kendall, Rogers, San Bernardino Mayor Carey Davis, Omnitrans CEO Scott Graham.)

“Transit is about more than just getting around: it maps a community’s priorities,” said Leslie Rogers, Regional Administrator for the Federal Transit Administration, at the event. “It’s also a ladder of opportunity that connects people to jobs. In fact, just building this project put hundreds of local residents to work in the throes of the recession, and we’re especially proud of that fact.” Approximately 220 jobs were generated during construction.

The crowd joined the San Bernardino Cardinals Cheerleaders in the cheer "sbX 2014!"

The crowd joined the San Bernardino Cardinals Cheerleaders cheering “sbX 2014!”

The 14 articulated vehicles manufactured by New Flyer for the sbX line, are the first five-door, compressed natural gas (CNG) powered, 60-footers ever built.  Omnitrans CEO/General Manager Scott Graham noted, “the sbX coaches feature our first rear-facing, self-securement wheelchair positions, our first interior bike racks, and our first on board Wi-Fi and power outlets.”

#sbx2014

Graham also commended the corridor contractor, Griffith/Comet, for completing the project on time, within budget, and with a perfect safety record of no lost-time accidents in over 400,000 hours worked.

#sbx2014 Omnitrans CEO Scott Graham and San Bernardino Mayor Carey Davis

Omnitrans CEO Scott Graham and San Bernardino Mayor Carey Davis

The BRT line utilizes TSP (traffic signal prioritization), so sbX vehicles can advance through busy intersections. Dedicated station platforms offer real-time arrival displays, ticket vending machines, emergency telephones, customer call boxes and public art.  To enhance security, the multiple video cameras at each station are monitored 24/7.

#sbx2014

The Omnitrans sbX launch is the culmination of over 10 years of planning, design, construction and system testing.  Parsons Transportation Group helped initiate the project in 2004, taking it from alternatives analysis through final design.  Jacobs Engineering handled construction management and related activities.

#sbx2014

Project partners included Omnitrans, U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Transit Administration (FTA), San Bernardino Associated Governments, the City of San Bernardino and the City of Loma Linda. Of the total $191.7 million project budget, 96 percent came from federal, state and county funds designated for transit projects, including $75 million from the FTA Small Starts Program. The project includes three elements: vehicle purchase, corridor construction and vehicle maintenance facility upgrades.

#sbx2014

More Information available at:

#sbx2014

Civic Center Station: before and after

sbx civic center station before

Click to see time lapse photos of the construction of the Civic Center Station over the past 6 months.

With the upcoming launch of our sbX rapid transit service on April 28th, we thought it might be fun to look back to see how far we’ve come. Click the photo above for time lapse photos of the construction of the sbX Civic Center Station taken over the past six months. Photos were shot from the pedestrian bridge near E Street and Court Street in Downtown San Bernardino.

We’ve definitely come a long way! The pictures below give a closer look at the finished station and the surrounding area today.

sbX Civic Center Station

The street has been transformed with a center station platform and dedicated bus lanes.

Carousel st and Court st san bernardino

New railings and landscaping dress up the sidewalks on either side of the station and help prevent pedestrians from jaywalking.

Carousel st and Court st san bernardino

Landscaping and rails along the opposite sidewalk at the Civic Center Station

sbx civic center station

Digital signs show arrival times. Shelter roofs and windscreens protect passengers from wind, rain and sun.

sbX civic center station

Yellow truncated dome pads along the sides of the platform help guide riders with vision impairments

sbx station lights

These small light poles located between railings at the far ends of the station provide lighting along the platform and enhance the landscaped areas.

sbx vehicle at the civic center station

sbX rapid transit vehicle on a test run by the Civic Center Station

sbx  civic center station

Light bars incorporated into the roof of the shelter provide light for evening travelers while the transparent glass windscreens ensures good visibility.

station art paver at sbx civic center station

Along the platform pavement, glazed ceramic tiles by artist Robert Delgardo tell the story of the past and history of the area. The tiles incorporate photo studies of the downtown area, interviews with local residents and research from historical archives.

 

Ride free on sbX during launch week!!

Ride free on sbX during launch week!

Here’s your chance to make history as one of the first riders to climb  aboard sbX rapid transit, the first-ever express passenger service in Inland Southern California!

  • All rides are FREE during launch week, April 28th – May 2nd
  • Hours of operation: 6:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.  Monday through Friday
  • Service runs every 10 minutes during peak hours (6:00-9:00 a.m. and 3:00-6:00 p.m.), 15 minutes off peak
  • Free Wi-Fi and power outlets are available on board 
  • Station Ambassadors will help guide riders during first 10 service days
  • Accepts the same fares and passes as  Omnitrans local route service
  • Passes can be purchased at ticket vending machines at station platforms (credit and debit only)
  • 4 interior bike racks and 2 wheelchair securements on each vehicle
  • Level boarding at all stations eliminates the need for doorway ramps
  • Stops include major destinations in the cities of San Bernardino and Loma Linda

Remember you’re invited to ride FREE on sbX during between April 28th and May 2nd, so save the dates!

A look at sbx station security

Omnitrans security tests an emergency phone at an sbX station platform

Security Supervisor Mark Crosby tests an emergency phone at an sbX station platform

With the launch of sbX rapid transit service fast approaching, our security team has been working diligently behind the scenes to ensure they are well prepared.

It’s a challenge Omnitrans security supervisor Mark Crosby takes seriously.

“The stations, the park-and-rides were all designed with crime prevention in mind,” he explains.

sbX station platform at Cal State San Bernardino

sbX station platform at Cal State San Bernardino

“Extensive planning went into the stations using CPTED, Crime Prevention Though Environmental Design. It was important to have good visibility from the street for our security patrols and law enforcement. Artwork was strategically placed so that it could be easily monitored and transparent glass was used.”

Transparent art panel at the sbX VA Hospital station

A transparent art panel at the sbX VA Hospital station platform

Omnitrans also collaborated with other local groups to form a Safety and Security Council that focused on safety and security planning of the sbX stations. The Council was comprised of representatives from the following groups:

  • San Bernardino Police Department
  • San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, Terrorism Liaison Officer
  • San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, Loma Linda Station
  • San Bernardino County Fire Department, Office of Emergency Services
  • Loma Linda University Medical Center Security
  • CalTrans
  • SanBAG
  • Loma Linda Fire Department
  • California State University at San Bernardino Police Department
  • VA Hospital Police in Loma Linda
Crews test the security cameras that monitor each sbX station

Crews test the security cameras that monitor each sbX station

The Council worked together to establish appropriate security procedures and responses. For example, they wanted to ensure that customer service phones were available as well as emergency call boxes, so that law enforcement wasn’t getting call about bus arrivals.

Unlike bus stops and transit centers which are maintained by the cities, the sbX station platforms are owned and maintained by Omnitrans.

The new Omnitrans sbX Transit Security patrol car

The new Omnitrans sbX Transit Security patrol car

“This is the first time we’ve owned outside property, and we are taking pro-active measures to prevent potential problems before they happen,” says Crosby. “We monitor station activity 24/7 with patrols and cameras. We have also enhanced our team with several new officers who will be patrolling the corridor looking for things like suspicious activity, trespassing after hours, vandalism loitering, medical issues and mechanical problems.”

Transit security patrols are equipped to handle any emergency

Transit security patrols are equipped to handle any emergency

Crosby says the officers, contractors from General Security Services, are highly skilled professionals whose training includes crisis management, conflict resolution, emergency response procedures, traffic control, first aid, diversity and crowd control. They are also licensed ham radio operators equipped to handle emergency communications.General Security Services also supplies the specially equipped patrol truck the officers will use on their rounds. Designed by a former cop, the vehicle is developed with the officer in mind.

sbx transit security

It features a light bar with a high beam LED spotlight bar beneath, a front push bar, a power inverter, a PA system, a toolkit, a trauma bag, yellow security tape, a laptop, emergency barriers with flashers, and orange pylons.

At the Omnitrans San Bernardino office, sbX security officers observe station activity 24/7 from a central security hub. Not only do they watch for suspicious activity, they also monitor station conditions for potential hazards from illegally parked cars to overflowing trash cans.

“Security has been a key component throughout this process,” explains Mark. “From station development to implementing new monitoring technologies, our primary goal has been to ensure safety along the sbX corridor.”

- Juno Kughler Carlson
juno.carlson@omnitrans.org

sbX Security Officers monitor station activity 24/7 from a central security hub

sbX security officers monitor station activity 24/7 from a central security hub

Testing sbX Ticket Vending Machines

Testing of the Omnitrans sbX ticket vending machine

The Omnitrans team tests the operation of an sbX ticket vending machine.

Did you know that fares for the sbX rapid transit line will be the same as for the Omnitrans fixed routes?  It makes traveling both systems convenient and easy!

Soon passengers will be able to purchase their passes from one of our new ticket vending machines (TVMs) at any of our  sbX station platforms using a debit or credit card. 

The Omnitrans team at the sbX Civic Center Station

Today the Omnitrans team headed out to the Civic Center Station to do function and language testing on one of the  TVMs. These machines are not yet operational to the general public but will be ready in time for the sbX launch. Headers and instructional stickers will also be added to each machine to guide the user through the purchase process.

Omnitrans Customer Service Supervisor Melissa Castillo verifies the Spanish language translation

Omnitrans Customer Service Supervisor Melissa Castillo verifies the Spanish language translation on the TVM.

The TVM offers both English and Spanish help menus. A user friendly screen prompts riders to select the type of pass they wish to purchase: Full Fare, Youth, Senior or Disabled/Medicare. Next they choose either a 1-day, 7-day, or 31-day option or they can purchase a 1-way ride ticket. Using a swiper and keypad to the left of the screen, they can then pay for the pass using either a credit or debit card. It’s that simple!

What do you think of the new TVMs? Are they something you’ll want to use?

screenshot of the ticket vending machine

A screenshot of the ticket vending machine

Ceremony To Celebrate Big Win for sbX

sbX PROJECT PARTNERS CELEBRATE COMPLETION
On April 22nd, Omnitrans and project partners from San Bernardino and Loma Linda will come together  to celebrate the completion of the sbX Green Line – the Inland Empire’s first-of-its-kind bus rapid transit (BRT) service. The 15.7-mile line between northern San Bernardino and Loma Linda marks the start of a new era of intermodal public transit for the region. Launching sbX is a big W-I-N for Omnitrans!

PUBLIC INVITED TO RIDE FREE DURING LAUNCH WEEK
Don’t miss out on being one of the first to ride sbX! Mark your calendar for Start of Service April 28, 2014! Service will run from 6:00 a.m. to 8:50 p.m. and Omnitrans sbX ambassadors will be at station locations along the corridor during the first few days to help you Get on Board!

Kelly Koehler
kkoehler@westboundcommunications.com 

Construction Ends, sbX Service Launches April 28

Whether you have been following sbX construction since the groundbreaking or are new to learning about the service, we’ve got great news to report! The Omnitrans sbX Green Line Bus Rapid Transit Service launches this month, connecting riders to key destinations between northern San Bernardino and Loma Linda. To prepare for start of service on April 28, 2014, construction crews and project management have been busy finalizing items such as fine-tuning electrical components at station locations and at intersections with Traffic Signal Prioritization, keeping up with landscape maintenance, installing various safety features such as railings to prevent jaywalking, and restriping select roadway along the corridor.

For the most part, minimal construction activities are limited to daytime hours between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m.  Traffic control has been lifted along the corridor and you may notice some 60-foot sbX buses driving alongside you at times. As a reminder, buses are being tested and are on the road daily. Important to note, even though construction is winding down, public outreach representatives are still available via the project helpline at (855) SBX-NEWS (729-6397). We’re on board to answer your construction and service related questions until May 2014.

- Kelly Koehler
kkoehler@westboundcommunications.com