GRANTS PASS, Ore. — After breaking ground at the end of December, five new shelters at bus stops are on the their way to being completed in Grants Pass. Waiting for the bus in Grants Pass is getting a lot more comfortable as the city finishes installing the bus stops, but while some riders welcome the change, others still question the project’s budget.
The daily commute for some in Josephine County involves waiting to get on a bus. College student Cori Hefley relies on the bus three days a week to get to and from class. She says she’s looking forward to using the new bus shelters in Grants Pass.
“If there were no bus stops around here, a lot of people wouldn’t be able to get anywhere,” said Cori Hefley.
While some riders like Hefley welcome the changes to the stops, other riders still question the project’s $388,000 budget, shaking out to just over $77,000 per stop.
“Because it is a federal aid project, the federal aid requirements for a project of this scope are a lot more labor intensive,” said Grant Specialist Scott Lindberg
Scott Lindberg also said because the project is funded with federal money, certain specifications had to be made, which drove up the cost.
“We got it done as cheap as we could and we spent lots of time on the phone with different federal agencies and designers, really trying to keep this project as cheap as possible,” Lindberg said.
The shelter’s design is supposed to be durable and long lasting. The city is hoping to encourage more use of public transportation through the construction of the transportation shelters. Hefley also encourages commuters to get out from behind the wheel and hop on the bus.
“Riding the bus is great and you get to meet a lot of people on the bus and make friends. I think it’s really beneficial,” Hefley said.
The final bus top is expected to be completed by the end of the month and another bus stop will have artwork added in the spring. City officials say frequency of use and visibility were key factors in deciding which stops would have the new shelters.