Tag Archives: omnitrans transit center

Passenger gains new lease on life through biking and riding

From racing as a teenager growing up in San Bernardino and Highland, to riding to and from class as an adult, bicycling has been a life-long hobby for eight-year Omnitrans passenger Adrian. A fun, leisure activity has since evolved into a practical mode of transportation that has made a meaningful impact in his life, and we are pleased to have been along on his ride.

“I used to bike race when I was younger,” Adrian tells us while waiting for Route 4 at the San Bernardino Transit Center (SBTC). “I stopped when I got a car and started working. At 43, I needed a career-change and I began taking courses at San Bernardino Valley College.”

“Because of the unlimited student rides with GoSmart, I started riding again regularly. When Omnitrans started allowing bikes on the bus, it made getting around so convenient. I can go anywhere that I want now without walking!”

This was not always the case. Suffering from high blood pressure, Adrian was told that living past 40 was not possible. He refused to become dependent on the drugs that regulated his heart disease, and was determined to make a change that reunited him with his passion – bikes.

“I used to weigh 260 pounds,” recounts Adrian. “I quit drinking and started to make changes toward becoming healthier. I thought, ‘Wait a minute.’ I used to love riding and racing mountain bikes. I straightened myself out and thought about what I used to do before all this mayhem,” he says.

Adrian now studies water supply technology at Valley Colleges and is interested in a career at a water plant. He is drawn to the scientific aspect of the field, the job stability, and flexibility. Riding the bus helps him complete assignments before class or squeeze in extra study time before an exam.

“Sometimes I ride the 11.5 miles from my house to Valley College, but if I need to relax, or read an article before class, I do that on the bus ride,” says Adrian. “By the time the bus arrives at the transit center, I am done and ready to ride over to class.”

Adrian takes advantage of low-cost bike maintenance at the Bike Hubitat at the SBTC. Using skills learned along the way, he now helps friends with their own bike maintenance and has become an enthusiast of the Inland Empire Biking Alliance.

“It can get very pricey to maintain bikes,” says Adrian, who enjoys giving back to the cycling community when he is not with his teenage son or working toward his educational goals. “I’ve taught myself to work on them myself. The Bicycle Hubitat here at the SBTC also helps me with bike repairs, so I don’t have to waste money on expensive tools that I’ll only use one time.”

Adopting this alternative mode of transportation definitely has contributed to the betterment of Adrian’s life. He credits biking for bringing some of his youth back into his life and keeping him active and focused. His health has improved, and he even was successfully taken off of high blood pressure medication! “I’m grateful that Omnitrans has been a part of that journey,” he says.

“Now, when drivers on the road cut me off, or yell at me to get out of the way, I always end up catching up to them at a red light and look at them through their window. The look on their faces is pretty funny, as if they are asking themselves – ‘how did he catch up to me so fast!?’” he laughs.

Omnitrans and Women’s Transportation Seminar Host Classroom to Career Day

For many, the first thing that comes to mind when we think of the Girl Scouts will inevitably be “cookies!” However, Girl Scouts does so much more than that, and is laying the groundwork for young girls to develop the courage, confidence, and character to make the world a better place.

Omnitrans had the privilege to contribute to this mission, and partnered with the Girl Scouts of San Gorgonio, the Women’s Transportation Seminar of the Inland Empire (WTS-IE), San Bernardino County Transportation Authority, and Metrolink to host the Classroom to Career event for over 100 girls from throughout San Bernardino County on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 during National Engineers Week.

Omnitrans Marketing Specialist Janice Kuhn explains the importance of our transit center info kiosks to students.

“It is more important now than ever to expose younger girls to careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Education, and Math).  They are thirsty for knowledge about potential careers in transportation and other STEM fields.”  said Lisa Reece, Vice President, HDR and WTS-IE Chapter Advisor.

The day began at the downtown San Bernardino Transit Center where a few of the women of Omnitrans working in various roles ranging from finance and marketing, to route planning and scheduling, to bus maintenance, provided a tour of the facility to the students, which concluded with a Metrolink train ride from the transit center to the nearby Santa Fe Depot.

Once at the depot, the girls learned about the importance of our transportation network and its history by touring the Rail Museum. The group participated in hands-on activities that stimulated their minds to envision what the future of transportation may look like.

Students work on one of their STEM activities, designing their own roads using various materials.

Professional women from various facets of the transportation industry shared their job functions and career paths, inspiring the girls to think about a career that they may also choose to pursue in the future.

“Omnitrans is committed to being a positive and impactful part of the community,” said Omnitrans Marketing Manager Nicole Ramos. “It was great to partner with like organizations to meet the professionals of tomorrow and illustrate the opportunities transit careers offer.”

For photos of the event, click here to view album.

Celebrating art and community at the San Bernardino Transit Center

Over 100 people came together at the San Bernardino Transit Center on Saturday, October 14, 2017 for a day of art and community fun (and snowcones!) at the 2nd Annual SBTC Sidewalk Chalk Art Contest.

Chalk art interpretations of this year’s “Connecting Our Community” theme by 15 entrants(including two groups of three and two couples) adorned the sidewalks of the transit center as spectators enjoyed a live music performance by Jose Banuelos, courtesy of the San Bernardino Teen Music Workshop, and refreshments by Kona Ice.

Four judges from the local arts community (including the City of San Bernardino Fine Arts Commission, Arts Connection, The Arts Council of San Bernardino County, and The Art Institute of California—Inland Empire) came together and chose the three winners, which was admittedly no easy task! After much deliberation, the three winners chosen were:

  • 3rd Place: Alicia Rubios, winner of $100, whose art showed how people connect through music.
  • 2nd Place: Dana Devereaux and David Mir, winners of $150, whose impressive art featured a man and a woman talking on the phone. The image of the world and various countries’ flags between the two individuals signified the distance between them and the importance of connecting with others, no matter how near or far.
  • 1st Place: Arlette Ramirez, winner of $300, created a colorful chalk art homage to Omnitrans. She drew our mascot, Buster the Bus, greeting passengers at one of our bus stops and handing out balloons to symbolize the welcoming and friendly Omnitrans riding experience.

Our first place, second place. and third place winners.

“We are pleased that the sidewalk chalk art contest has become a true community event, combining local art talent and community partnerships at our regional transit center,” said Omnitrans spokesperson Wendy Williams. “There are some exciting things coming to the transit center in the following months, including Metrolink extended service and a Riverside Transit Agency connection, and we look forward to integrating the transit center’s growth into next year’s contest.”

View more photos of the event on Flickr. Keep an eye out for information on next year’s event – we’d love to see your art grace the competition!

Mural inspired by the San Bernardino Transit Center

DSC_0298

The mural depicts imagery related to the various modes of transportation that all come together at the transit center and serve the community.

Inspired by the new Omnitrans transit center located in the City of San Bernardino, Louie Solano a resident of Fontana who maintains an art studio and gallery in Riverside, created this final concept for a temporary mural which depicts the iconic physical and environmental landscape of the San Bernardino region. The 8’ x 51’ mural titled “Exposure” depicts imagery related to the various modes of transportation that all come together at the transit center and serve the community.

Using a general design motif that speaks to the future of transportation in the area, the artist uses bright colors and a graphic sense of movement to convey the significant change and growth of regional transportation. Located in the center of the composition is the new Omnitrans transit center and from it all roads spring forth into the community. To depict a sense of the “intergenerational and multi-cultural” aspect of the transit user within the region, Solano details all figures in a colorful graphic form and shows them participating in a variety of activities; biking, Metrolink, walking and bus transportation.

DSC_0183

The background of the left side of the composition shows the natural beauty of the San Bernardino Mountains. The artist depicts a mountain landscape to remind the viewer of this prized destination and picturesque landscape visible to most areas served by Omnitrans. On the right side of the composition, the artist includes silhouettes of buildings that depict a variety of notable structures of the region. The Mission Inn; AK Smiley Library; Beverly Ranch; Bono’s Restaurant and Deli; The Harvey House; Wigwam Village and the Kelso Railroad Depot.   These historic structures are all listed on the National Registry for Historic Places in San Bernardino County. They evoke the idea of the various urban centers of the region within the service area of Omnitrans.

The mural also contains imagery of Metrolink trains, the standard Omnitrans bus and the custom sbX bus. A depiction of the new transit center is shown in the middle of the composition to remind us all of the central role the new transit center will play in the future of the region.

For more about the artist, visit his website:  http://www.hippieone.com/#!about/c240r

Omnitrans Facility Supervisor John Gensel hangs the mural.

Omnitrans Facility Supervisor John Gensel hangs the mural.

San Bernardino Transit Center Update

See more photos of the San Bernardino Transit Center on Flickr.

 View artist renderings of the finished project here.

Construction is moving along on schedule and on budget for the San Bernardino Transit Center. The project, which is managed by San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG), will be complete in July 2015. The facility is LEED Gold, with solar panels on the roof, drought-tolerant landscaping, and a highly efficient heating and cooling system in the building. It will include a customer service/pass sales office, public restrooms, and shelters with real-time bus arrival signage.

Parsons Brinckerhoff is the construction manager, Kemp Brothers is the contractor, and HDR was the designer. The $21 million project is being paid for through a combination of federal transit, federal highway, and state and local funds. The majority are federal transit grants that were awarded to Omnitrans for Bus Facilities.

Sundial art installation at the San Bernardino Transit Center


 View artist renderings of the finished project here.

See more photos of the San Bernardino Transit Center on Flickr.
Photos by Janice Kuhn

Omnitrans awarded $5.3 million for transit center

Click photo for larger view.

Draft plan for the San Bernardino Transit Center. The design and construction of the transit center project is being led by the San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG). 

In a press release today, Congressman Joe Baca (D-Rialto) congratulated Omnitrans on its award of a $5.3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), for the construction of a new bus facility in San Bernardino, California. The funding, which is part of the Federal Transit Administration’s Bus Livability grants program, will be used to construct a 22 bus bay complex as part of the San Bernardino Transit Center.

“I congratulate Omnitrans for their efforts in securing this critical federal grant assistance,” said Rep. Baca. “I was proud to lend my support to this responsible grant request. Construction of a new bus bay at the San Bernardino Transit Center will help to reduce congestion for Inland residents, and improve the overall quality of life in our communities.”

The San Bernardino Transit Center will use the awarded funds to construct a bus facility comprised of 22 bus bays with shelters and real-time bus arrival information for passengers. The facility will also include a transit station building with public restrooms and meeting rooms, a bike station with secure bike parking and short-term rental services, food vending, bike and pedestrian paths, public art, and street improvements.

Rep. Baca sent a letter of support to the Department of Transportation in March of 2012, urging the Federal Transit Administration to successfully award Omnitrans’ grant request.

“Better investment in our nation’s infrastructure is imperative to the success of our economic recovery,” concluded Rep. Baca. “This funding will improve public transportation for all area residents, while also helping to get more cars off the road to ease congestion and improve air quality for Inland residents. I will continue to work so that Inland communities have access to vital grant assistance made available by the federal government.”