This nearly 12 year project stemmed from discussions in late 2002 concerning the condition and need for possible renovation of the Parker Drive facility, parts of which were then over 40 years old. Then-City Manager Steve Sheiffer and Assistant City Manager Tom Rogers began the process by holding a study session with the City Council to discuss the Parker Drive facility and options for the future. A significant issue was the size of the site at 900 North Parker and the inability to accommodate future expansion. Following City Council approval for further investigation, nineteen different sites throughout the community were researched, and a preliminary needs study was conducted by a professional consulting firm with the results taken back to the City Council for review. With City Council authorization, the site at North Parker Drive and Black Bridge Road was purchased, and City Manager Sheiffer created the Transit Services Center Building Committee; Chaired by then - Councilmember Russ Steeber and including representation from the nearby neighborhood, City professional staff and the consultant, to provide input on design and make decisions throughout the process. Over time, 23 City Council members as well as the City’s Plan Commission were involved in decision-making and approval of the project before construction started in the summer of 2013.
The Transit Services Center, located at 101 Black Bridge Road, totals 43,200 square feet compared to about 22,000 square feet at the Parker Drive facility. The new building is designed to serve the Janesville community for at least 50 years. The facility can store 18 buses under roof, not including buses in the 5 maintenance bays, and the building is designed to be economically expanded to house up to an additional 10 buses to allow JTS to grow with City and regional transportation needs over the coming decades.
The total project cost is $7.95 million, which includes purchase of the site, construction of the building, design and consultant fees, and furnishings. Three separate Federal Transit Administration (FTA) grants provided 83.5% ($6.64 million) of the project cost, with the most recent grant received in July 2012, enabling the project to be finalized. Capital funding from the City through bonding provided 16.5% ($1.31 million) toward the project cost. Angus Young and Associates of Janesville provided architecture, engineering and landscape architecture services. Lochner of Rockford, IL provided civil engineering services and Corporate Contractors, Inc. of Beloit was the general contractor.
Forward Janesville Ambassadors, Transportation Secretary Mark Gottlieb, Janesville City Councilmembers, City Manager Mark Freitag and Transit Director Dave Mumma cut the ribbon during the Transit Services Center dedication ceremony.