Category Archives: sbX construction

sbX Project Nears Substantial Completion

Crews worked hard to finish the roadway paving and restriping at the Tippecanoe station before the holiday season. One step closer to substantial project completion!

This holiday season, Omnitrans sbX gives you the gift of substantial construction completion. Throughout the month of December, our crews will be working hard to finish all of the major roadway work such as paving and restriping along E Street and major structural work at all of the station locations. Once complete, this will mark the end of major construction along the 15.7-mile bus rapid transit corridor from San Bernardino to Loma Linda.

After the New Year and up to service launch in April 2014, crews will test electrical components and buses, hang new corridor signage, install community-themed art at the stations, replant landscape, and wrap up other odds and ends to complete the project.

– Kelly Koehler
    kkoehler@westboundcommunications.com

Eye-catching sbX station art installations

Art installations have begun at several of the sbX rapid transit stations. Here’s a look at a few of the striking pieces you’ll see along the E-Street corridor.

First free-standing public art installed on the E-Street corridor is a structural monument at the sbX station at North Mall Way, a tribute to the National Orange Show Events Center, by artist Kyung-Mi Shin.

Stainless-steel sculptural marker referencing proton therapy and orange blossoms awaits mounting at Anderson Street at Prospect Street. — at Loma Linda University Medical Center.

Red and white stripes adorn a blue pole at sbX southern terminus station at Benton Street and Barton Road. Eventually stars will be added, along with dog tags streaming down the pole as a tribute to our veterans. — at VA Loma Linda Healthcare System.

Artist Leticia Huerta designed the art for the Kendall Drive stations (theme: Natural Histories) — in San Bernardino, CA.

SBPD SWAT team gets familiar with sbX

Special Weapons and Tactics team members from the San Bernardino Police Department survey the inside of a five-door sbX bus to prepare emergency-response strategies.

The mission was short and simple: learn more about the new five-door, 60-foot vehicles that will soon grace the E Street corridor; strategize what to do in the event of a dangerous situation on board; and execute drills to assure the safety of passengers.

Those goals were accomplished November 6, 2013 by the San Bernardino Police Department’s Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team near the police shooting range at Perris Hill Park. The event was put together by Omnitrans’ Operations and Safety and Security departments.

San Bernardino SWAT team rehearses a drill designed to storm a sbX bus under siege. The training was facilitated by Omnitrans’ Operations and Safety & Security departments in preparation for a transit emergency on a 60-foot vehicle.

“This is a coordinated effort between Omnitrans and the San Bernardino Police Department to partner with local first responders on emergency response,” said Security and Loss Prevention Supervisor Mark Crosby.  “We wanted them to become familiar with the new sbX buses and its features so they are prepared to respond to  potential life-and-death situations.”

The elite law enforcement team was shown locations of surveillance cameras, points of entry and other intricate details so they could assess various scenarios, from armed passenger threats to terrorist activity to hostage situations.

“In the end, if lives can be saved and injuries avoided, anything we can do to help first responders become familiarized with Omnitrans equipment and services is beneficial to the passengers we serve,” Crosby said.

–  David Rutherford
   David.Rutherford@omnitrans.org

Rapid Transit to Help People with Disabilities

Levy Johnson, who uses a walker to get to the temporary transfer center in Downtown San Bernardino, rides in the wheelchair section of southbound Route 2 on his way to the VA Loma Linda Healthcare System for his daily weekday therapy to treat neuropathy, which causes numbness in his legs.

Levy Johnson finds it increasingly difficult to lift his walker on board Route 2 to his daily appointments at the VA Loma Linda Healthcare System to treat his neuropathy disorder. The San Bernardino resident is looking forward to the day when he can just wheel himself on board the new sbX service from the platform at E Street and Court Street.

“The ease of access will help,” Johnson said. “The walker feels heavier every time I lift it up the stairs.”

Johnson is one of many people with disabilities who will benefit from rapid transit service on Kendall Drive, E Street, Hospitality Lane and Anderson Street, which is scheduled to begin early next year. Platform-level boarding on express service is the alternative to lifting an accessory such as a walker, or using a ramp to board on a wheelchair, because the height of the platform is even with the floor of the vehicle.

Johnson boards Route 2 on weekdays at the temporary transit mall on 4th Street between F and G streets to attend physical therapy courses at the VA. The retired veteran has suffered from neuropaty ever since his days as a cook at Fort Ord, in 1967 and ’68. He said he experiences numbness in his legs, which has become progressively worse over time. Neuropathy is a nerve disease which can cause painful cramps, muscle loss and bone degeneration.

“I rely on Omnitrans to get around because I don’t have any other transportation,” he said. “It’s very dependable and now it’s going to become more convenient.”

–  David Rutherford
David.Rutherford@omnitrans.org

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New U-Turn at Fairway Drive

Last month our sbX newsletter featured an article about the center-median safety barriers that have been installed at various t-intersections along the corridor. The purpose of the barriers are to restrict cars from entering the future “sbX Only” lane. Thank you to all who provided input regarding the safety barriers. In particular, there were a number of accessibility concerns regarding the barrier at MacKay Street on the south end of E Street.

As a result of feedback, drivers trying to access MacKay Street from the southbound direction on E Street can now make a protected u-turn from a newly installed turn pocket at the t-intersection of E Street and Fairway Drive. This change enables motorists to make a u-turn safely and access MacKay Street heading northbound on E Street.

Have thoughts about the project? Contact us any time, toll free, at (855) SBX-NEWS (729-6397).

–  Kelly Koehler
    (kkoehler@westboundcommunications.com)

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E Street Paving Begins; Station Work Resumes

Concrete planters line pedestrian ramp leading to sbX station platform at E Street and Court Street in Downtown San Bernardino.

Major changes are on the way for E Street. To start, the final two station locations at Court Street and at Baseline Street will really start to come together in November. With the station platforms now complete and structure steel erected, crews can focus on installing ticket-vending machines, security cameras and paver tiles on the station platforms.

In addition, the placement of the final layer of asphalt along E Street and Hospitality Lane marks another major sbX milestone. Following completion of paving along Hospitality Lane in early November, crews will move operations to E Street. Crews will work south from the north end of the project. This roadway work will provide a smooth, even ride for motorists.

In order to minimize impacts to residents and businesses along the corridor, paving and restriping activities will take place at night. Intermittent street closures may occur between the hours of 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. Thank you for your patience during this phase of the project.

–  Kelly Koehler
(kkoehler@westboundcommunications.com)

Paving and landscape-irrigation work has begun on Hospitality Lane between Tippecanoe Avenue and Waterman Avenue. Paving will continue on E Street through mid-November

Loma Linda Park-and-Ride Paving Complete

In October, crews were busy at work in Loma Linda to finish major paving activities, including the park-and-ride lot just south of Anderson Street and Redlands Boulevard. This is one of four park-and-ride locations along the sbX corridor and it is a key location that will connect riders in Loma Linda and Redlands to other station locations in San Bernardino. Park-and-ride station benefits include:

  • Bus shelters to protect from wind, sun and rain
  • Digital message boards
  • Emergency telephones
  • Electronic ticket vending machines
  • Closed circuit videos for safety
  • Solar powered lighting

Major activities throughout Loma Linda in November include station lighting installation and data and video communication system installation.

–  Kelly Koehler
(kkoehler@westboundcommunications.com)

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Omnitrans VMF construction continues

VMF work continues at Omnitrans’ West 5th Street facility

Work is continuing on the Omnitrans vehicle maintenance facility (VMF) at Fifth Street and Medical Center in San Bernardino to make the modifications and upgrades necessary to accommodate the agency’s fourteen  60-foot articulated sbX vehicles.  

The bus yard parking area was restriped earlier this year

Earlier this year, the parking area of the bus yard was re-striped and equipped with new light fixtures. The electricals are still pending. Trash compactors to reduce the frequency of trash collection have been installed but are not yet operational. A new bus wash and modification of maintenance bays are still pending.

Demolition of the old fuel island

This month the old fuel island was demolished and the transition was made to a new temporary fueling station on the east side of the lot.

New lights have been installed and the temporary fueling station is now operational.

Underground diesel fuel storage tanks that are no longer used have been safely removed by construction crews. The next task will be the demolition of the old bus wash. All work on the VMF project will be completed by mid-2014.

Underground diesel storage tank removal

For more photos of our VMF construction project click here.

E Street Medians Create Corridor Changes

Recently, crews built sections of median curbs along E Street at non-signalized three-way intersections. These barricades were installed for the safety of the motoring public to keep vehicles from driving across dedicated center-running lanes where the sbX Bus Rapid Transit line will operate.

E Street median curbs have been placed at MacKay Drive, Century Avenue, Orange Show Lane, Oak Street, Athol Street (near San Manuel Stadium), and a small area just north of Rialto Avenue. These are similar to the median curbs built earlier this year on Hospitality Lane at Sunwest Lane, Diners Court and Business Center Drive.

Safety barriers can be a bit tricky to get used to at first. They will require route adjustments for some people to reach their destination. To help motorists get to their destinations, a special map has been created indicating where u turns along the sbX corridor eventually will be allowed. Please click here  to view the u-turn map.

Signalized u turns will be located throughout a 5.4-mile stretch of buses running in exclusive lanes on E Street between 10th Street and Hospitality Lane; and on Hospitality Lane between E Street and Tippecanoe Avenue.

-Kelly Koehler

 

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Construction of final sbX station underway

Construction crews have laid the foundation for a concrete pedestrian ramp at the intersection of E Street and Court Street, which will lead to a station platform in the area of center-running lanes in Downtown San Bernardino; on the right are samples of artistic platform and crosswalk pavers.

Each month it becomes easier to visualize what the final sbX corridor will look like – and the Downtown San Bernardino area is no exception. In October, you’ll see an increase in construction as work is now underway at the final sbX station at Court and E streets. Located in the heart of Downtown, this station will serve as a key stop for those visiting City Hall, grabbing a bite to eat at local favorite Molly’s Cafe or catching a movie at Regal San Bernardino Stadium 14 & RPX.

In the coming weeks and month, construction crews will focus on building the station platform. You’ll see a steel and concrete framework built to support the steel canopy of the station. Paving crews will then work on a pedestrian walkway from the station to the intersection and installing concrete tile on the platform. Other milestones in the Downtown area will include the completion of center-lane paving, the patterned-pedestrian crosswalks and new landscaping. It’s all coming together for the start of service in April 2014!

-Kelly Koehler

 

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