Proposals for a planned multimodal transportation center in Downtown Louisville have been submitted to the city from various architects and a final selection will be made in late January with the project going to bid in late April or May. The station is envisioned to be a hub for a major bus line, have space for taxis and rental cars & bikes, offer secure bicycle storage for commuters and casual riders, offer cycling facilities such as showers, lockers, & repair shop, and include retail space for a potential coffee shop or other use.
The project was put on hold in 2009 and $1.8 million in stimulus funding diverted, but the plans have been revived and will be funded through Federal transportation funds disbursed through KIPDA. Chris Poynter with Mayor Abramson’s office says it’s less important where the money comes from than the fact that the transit center will be funded.
Metro Louisville intends the facility to promote the use of alternative transportation and an aggressive timetable has been established to get the project moving. A request for proposals was issued in late December and results are now being reviewed. A shortlist of firms will be issues today and a final selection made on January 22nd. Â After that, the chosen firm must have design documents ready for bid and construction by April 30.
Although other sites may be considered as well, currently, four sites for the center have been proposed on city owned land Downtown (indicated on map above):
- 117 South Seventh Street (Wind chimes / ground level of parking garage)
- Surface parking lot at Market & Sixth Streets
- Corner of Jefferson & Fourth Streets at public plaza
- Corner of Muhammad Ali & Fifth Streets at Founders Square
Uncharacteristic to many RFPs, the transit station request asks the selected firm to generate a business plan to “identify products and services, management structure, equipment needs, and operations of the” Intermodal Transit Center (ITC). This includes determining what features will be offered at the center and a detailed financial plan for operation.
The project is no small affair. Mayor Abramson described the facility as much more than a bike station, instead offering many different alternative transportation options making it a “true transit center.” The Intermodal Transit Center is expected to serve as an anchor for sustainable transport and offer a highly attractive and visible solution for getting around without a car.