Tag Archives: sbx rapid transit

Ride sbX for views of the 2017 solar eclipse!

Word on the street is that something super exciting is happening this Monday, August 21st. Something about the sun…and the moon? Oh yeah, it’s the solar eclipse of 2017!  During a three-hour window, the moon will pass between the sun and Earth, blocking all or part of the sun for up to three hours, something that has not been seen in the U.S. since 1979!

The rare occasion is surely a sight to be seen, and you can take part in the event easily with sbX rapid transit running every 10-15 minutes on weekdays. Our friends at Cal State San Bernardino (CSUSB) will set up solar telescopes and pinhole projectors on the CSUSB Library Lawn the morning of the eclipse, and visitors are welcome.

RIDE SBX TO VIEW THE ECLIPSE!
The eclipse begins at around 9 a.m. and lasts for nearly three hours, however, the best time for viewing will be between 10 and 11 a.m. Simply board sbX, ride northbound toward CSUSB, and avoid the hassle of parking and permit fees! There is a free Park-and-Ride at Kendall/Palm nearby, where you can leave your car and ride sbX to campus.

CLICK TO ENLARGE MAP

Don’t forget to tag @omnitrans in your astronomically stunning photos!

Enjoy a Free Ride During Rideshare Week 2016 & Enter to Win Prizes!

Did you know that the average Inland Empire commuter spends almost 60 hours each year in traffic? That’s like a week and a half of vacation time!

California celebrates alternative modes of transportation during Rideshare Week, happening October 3-7 this year! It’s the perfect opportunity to change up your daily commute to work or simply enjoy a leisurely outing around town in a new way.

Omnitrans is making it easy for you to participate this year and reduce your time in traffic with a FREE ride on our buses, redeemable any day and any time during Rideshare Week! This offer is redeemable on Omnitrans, sbX, or OmniGo.

coupon-on-iphone-appMobile App Coupon
If you haven’t already, download the Omnitrans mobile app on your device and click the ‘Free Ride’ tab to obtain the digital coupon. Simply show your bus driver the coupon when you board any day between October 3 and 7. The driver will then issue you one free day pass which you may use for unlimited rides on that day only. Digital app coupons may be redeemed one per customer.

Print Coupon
You may also download and print the Omnitrans free ride coupon directly from our website. Hand the coupon to your bus driver upon boarding any day between October 3 and 7, and they will issue you a free day pass for unlimited rides that day. Print coupons may be redeemed one per customer.

Rideshare Week Prize Drawings
IE Commuter, the Inland Empire’s one-stop shop for transportation information, is a great resource for information about ridesharing and the benefits of sustainable transportation methods including riding the bus, carpooling, vanpooling, bicycling, walking and telecommuting.
When you ride during Rideshare Week, you may enter to win prizes including an Ashley Furniture living room set, a one night stay at Palm Springs’ Ace Hotel & Swim Club, gift cards, and more! Simply visit www.IEcommuter.org to pledge your rideshare today, and you will automatically be entered into the drawing.

Ridesharing has proven to positively impact the individual’s finances and quality of life, as well as promote environment sustainability. Take the pledge today, enter to win prizes, and enjoy your free ride on Omnitrans this Rideshare Week 2016!

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CSUSB Students Head Back To School with Go Smart

The Coyotes are back on campus at Cal State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB) this fall for the new school year, and Omnitrans’ Go Smart program continues to make navigating college life easier for students in our service area!

Students at GoSmart schools are entitled to unlimited rides during the school year, with just a simple swipe of their valid student ID card. And they can ride not only on school days, but any day and time of the week! For a complete list of partner schools, click here.

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Rosa, an English major, at the CSUSB sbX station. She is working toward becoming a teacher in her hometown of San Bernardino as a way of giving back to her community.

Rosa, a fifth-year English major at the university, takes advantage of the unlimited rides available to her as a GoSmart student every single day of the week. She has been riding Omnitrans the majority of her time at CSUSB, and it has proven to be a wallet-friendly choice.

“I totally ditched my car and left it at home,” says Rosa, who has a car she could drive to school every day, but has found that riding Omnitrans is the more convenient, money-saving option for her. “I don’t have to pay for a parking pass, which is really expensive.”

Rosa began riding our fixed-route system, but when sbX  rapid transit service was introduced , she has not only continued to save money, but also time since the bus makes fewer stops. “Now that there is sbX, which is faster, I don’t have to wait to get home,” Rosa shares. “It has cut my [commute] time by more than half.”

Similarly, chemistry major Joseph Barrera relies on Omnitrans for transportation to school every weekday.

“This is how I get here from Redlands every day,” says Joseph of Go Smart. “It’s pretty good!”

Riding Omnitrans from downtown Redlands, Joseph connects to the sbX Green Line at the San Bernardino Transit Center daily as he completes his third year of schooling. Joseph is not alone – many of his peers also utilize public transportation as they work toward achieving their academic goals.

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Go Smart students boarding Route 2 at CSUSB.

“Omnitrans’ four routes with direct service to CSUSB are essential to student success,” says Thomas W. Gaffery, director of parking & transportation at CSUSB. “The GoSmart program allows our students to save money on gas and a parking permit, as well as enhancing CSUSB’s commitment to sustainability.”

Saving time and money while decreasing your carbon footprint – Go Smart is definitely the convenient way to go! To plan your trip, check out our route and schedule information online.

LLU employee talks Go Smart and sbX

Loma Linda Park and Ride.  photographer Juno Carlson

The sbX Park and Ride in Loma Linda

It’s early in the morning, and I’m snapping photos at the sbX station at the Loma Linda Park & Ride. The sky has a warm glow and the station is freshly washed and prepared to welcome the first riders of the day.

San Bernardino resident Mary Ann Morales is the first passenger to arrive. She is on her way to the Loma Linda University Faculty Medical Office where, for the past nine years, she has worked as a surgery scheduler.

Due to expansion construction, the Faculty Medical Office has recently lost a large amount of parking outside its building.

To accommodate the displaced employees, Loma Linda University (LLU) partnered with Omnitrans to implement a “GoSmart” style program. A negotiated fee paid for by LLU makes it possible for the Faculty Medical Center staff to ride Omnitrans fixed routes, sbX Rapid Transit and OmniGo at no charge, simply by swiping their ID badge.

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The sbX Redlands Blvd. Station at the Loma Linda Park and Ride

I’m interested in finding out what Mary Ann’s experience has been with us so far, and she agrees to an interview.

“How do you like sbX?” I ask her.

“It works for me,” she says. “The Park and Ride is actually pretty nice, and it’s convenient.

“Is it different from what you expected?”

She nods. “Oh yes!”

“What did you anticipate?”

Mary Ann hesitates. “Scary people. I was a little nervous. But it wasn’t like that at all. They’re actually just regular people. And sometimes we all talk. That’s another thing about sbX that’s a positive. You meet a lot of people you probably would never have met just taking a car. I even met my supervisor’s daughter-in-law that way, which was cool.”

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Just then the coach pulls up to the station. We board together and continue our conversation. I’m curious about how adding sbX to her commute compares to simply using a car.

“Our office opens at 8:00,” Mary Ann tells me. “So I used to get here at 7:45. Now I try to get to the Park and Ride around 7:00—just to be on the safe side.

One of the reasons I chose sbX over taking the Sheraton shuttle to work is because the shuttle has such a long wait time. They want to fill the shuttle, so a lot of times they just sit there for 15-20 minutes until more people arrive.  I shouldn’t have to wait around like that. SbX is fast and doesn’t wait for people to arrive—it just goes. I think a lot more people will be opting to ride it because of that.”

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Mary Ann reaches across the aisle to push the stop button, letting the coach operator know we want to get off at the Loma Linda University station. We disembark and walk towards her office.

“This is my little workout in the morning,” she laughs. “It’s a little bit of a walk but good exercise.  On my late night shift, it’s a little different.  I won’t take the bus if it means walking alone in the dark. I’ll either call a cab or get a ride with someone.”

Sometimes Mary Ann is able to connect with other co-workers who ride sbX. There are two medical assistants who also leave late and, if she can, she joins them. It’s more fun and gives them time to catch up.

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“Even having you walk with me makes me feel more comfortable,” she tells me. “There’s power in pairs. And it is kind of nice just to talk. I’m very sociable and friendly with people, so that comes easy for me.

I think my personality also helps with my work. I believe in treating people the way you would like to be treated. I try to treat patients who come in as if they could be my mom, my dad, my kids or my grandbabies. That’s my motto, you know? I do my best to try to make a difference.”

After a 5 minute walk, we arrive at the office.  Mary Ann smiles and poses for a quick photo.

“It’s was nice meeting you,” she says. “It’s great that Omnitrans wants to do a story on this. I like sbX and would recommend it to anyone who’s thinking about riding.”

– Juno Kughler Carlson,  juno.carlson@omnitrans.org

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The sbX Loma Linda University Station

Do you like this story and want to share it on your blog or newsletter?  All of our articles may be freely shared with others.

Have a great Omnitrans or sbX story to share? Let us know!

Food Fest vendors offer sbX free ride coupon

San Bernardino Third Thursdays Food Fest

Are you a foodie? Are you crazy about gourmet food trucks?  Then you won’t want to miss the San Bernardino Third Thursdays Food Fest!

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Specialty drinks from Mocha-Lotive

This popular downtown event is held next to City Hall the third Thursday of each month from 11:00-2:00.

Cupcakes from My Delight Cupcakery

Cupcakes from My Delight Cupcakery

This week, on March 19th, you can get a get a coupon for a free sbX ride with every meal purchased from participating Food Fest vendors.  Offer good while supplies last.

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Enjoy sweet and savory crepes from Crepes Bonaparte, ranked as one of the top 20 food trucks in America by QSR magazine. Or maybe you’re in the mood for a Blue Crab Burrito from Street Foods Co.? You might want to try Argentine food from Piaggio,  featuring extraordinary empanadas, superb sliders and mouthwatering Milanesa Sands. Yum!

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Don’t forget to save room for dessert! Satisfy your sweet tooth cravings with Chocolate Covered Strawberry and Lemonade cupcakes and other signature flavors from My Delight Cupcakery.

San Bernardino Third Thursdays Food Fest - My Delight Truck

Need a mid-day pick-me-up? Mocha-Lotive offers coffees, teas and smoothies to give you that extra boost of energy you need to make it through the work day.

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There are so many more culinary delights you won’t want to miss: the Mac & Cheese sandwich from The Grilled Cheese Truck, Asian style chicken from Belly Bombz, and  healthy brats or veggie dogs from Bratworks.

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Treat yourself and a friend to an unforgettable food experience this Friday and get your coupon for a free first-class ride on the sbX rapid transit line. You deserve it!

Blue Crab Burrito from Street Foods Co.

Blue Crab Burrito from Street Foods Co.

For more info visit the SB Third Thursdays Food Fest Facebook page.

Talking geography & dinosaurs aboard sbX

An sbX ride-along interview with Andrew and Mark Strickert

Andrew Strickert on Omnitrans sbX BRT, photographer Juno Kughler Carlson

I met 4-year old Andrew on his first sbX BRT trip. “It’s really fast!” he grinned.

I offered him a gift from my prize bag if he would let me interview him. He eyed the bag thoughtfully. “Do you have any dinosaurs in there?” he asked hopefully.

I shook my head. “Nope. Sorry, fresh out of dinosaurs. I have a cap, a tote bag or a cell phone pouch.”

“A hat then,” he decided. He pulled it on his head, peering up from under the brim. “I like dinosaurs a lot.”

Andrew and Mark Strickert on sbX BRT

I snapped a few photos and talked a bit with Andrew’s dad, Mark Strickert, a student at Valley College. Thanks to the Go Smart program, Mark gets unlimited free bus rides with his student ID. Although he has a car, he prefers to park it at the Loma Linda Park & Ride and take the bus to school. It saves him money and time.

“It’s also much easier than trying to find parking on campus,” he points out.

Mark told me he used to work for Orange County Transportation Authority doing stops and zones but had decided to head back to school to study geography. His goal is to eventually do urban planning for cities or transit.

“I’ve always been a huge fan of geography, maps, and transit ever since I was a little boy,” he confessed. “I rode the bus by myself for the first time when I was seven. Of course it was a different time and place then. Chicago in the 60s was a lot different from what it is now. But I was always interested in cities and how to get around.”

Andrew Strickert on sbX BRT, photographer Juno Kughler Carlson

He smiled over at his son.  “Andrew’s pretty good at getting around too. He knows when we’re close to home and can tell where he is from places that he recognizes.”

“Do you help your dad out if he gets lost?” I asked Andrew.

The 4-year-old shook his head giggling. “He never gets lost!”

His dad laughed.

Andrew was so excited that it was hard for him to sit still.   He moved from one seat to another between stops to check out the ride.

“So what kind of dinosaur do you like best?” I asked him curiously

“The one that stands up” he answered promptly.

“A T-Rex? He’s a little scary. You must be very brave. I think I prefer the kind of dinosaurs that eat veggies.”

Andrew nodded and turned around to look out the big window for a moment, swinging his legs back and forth.

“I have a dog named Roxie,” he said suddenly.  “She does tricks.”

“Really? What kind of tricks?”

He peered at me over the top of the seat.  “She sits down.”

“Wow. . . That is a pretty cool trick.”

“I know!!’ he said proudly, then added. “Dinosaurs don’t know how to sit.”

He hopped off the seat and went over to join his dad in the articulated section of the coach.

“Whoa!!” he laughed and held on to his head when the driver made a right and the turntable seats spun in a circle. “That was fun!”

“You know,” I said suddenly inspired. “I’ve never met a dinosaur but, if I do, I will have him call you.”

“Yeah?” Andrew looked up interested. “Do you think dinosaurs can talk on the phone?”

“I’m not sure, but if I meet one I’ll ask if he can call you.”

“Cool.” Andrew hesitated for a moment. “Not a big dinosaur though, okay? And not the one that stands up. A little one. Maybe like a baby or something.”

I agreed. “Besides, a big one might accidentally step on me. We’ll stick with little dinosaurs. Anyway it was nice meeting you. Thanks for the interview!”

Andrew grinned, “Bye.”

He grabbed his dad’s hand and the two got up to try out yet another seat.

You meet the most interesting people on board sbX!

This one’s for you, Andrew.

 – Juno Kughler Carlson
  juno.carlson@omnitrans.org 

Do you like this story and want to share it on your blog or newsletter?  All of our articles may be freely shared with others.

Have a great Omnitrans or sbX story to share? Let us know!

 

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.”

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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.

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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.

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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