MTD plans new transfer station

By Lindsey Gordon

Published 05/29 2014 10:18PM

Updated 05/30 2014 09:16AM

URBANA -- Now waiting for a bus could be more convenient and comfortable for riders. Champaign Urbana Mass Transit District wants to build a new transfer station downtown. WCIA-3's Lindsey Gordon has more. 

They hope to have it within the boundary of Race, Vine, Illinois and University. 

"If it's raining, or snowing, or it's miserably hot out, you want to go into a cool environment, a heated environment and certainly one with bathrooms," said rider, Kevin Wishard.

That's what Wishard and riders like him are going to get. Right now, all the transfers downtown, happen near Lincoln Square. The new transfer center would keep buses off the street. It would also keep passengers from having to cross the road to catch a ride. 

"It would be very convenient," said Wishard. 

"It's also safer, in my opinion," said Alexis Byrd, who was waiting for a bus off South Broadway. 

Much like what Champaign has. 

"We used to do something similar to that years and years ago in Champaign, but then we built Illinois Terminal," said MTD managing director designate Karl Gnadt. 

MTD is taking that idea and going beyond it. 

"We can have mixed-use facilities. We can have residential development. We can have educational facilities. I mean, everything is on the table for what it could be," said Gnadt. 

But passengers shouldn't count on it happening anytime soon. 

"Really, it's impossible for us to say at this time what any kind of timeline would be. I mean we'd love for it to happen as soon as possible, but realistically, we're talking years," Gnadt said. "This idea is in the very beginning stages and at this point they have no idea how much it could cost. That will depend on he scale of the project and who gets involved."

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