MYNORTHWEST NEWS

Kitsap Transit wants feedback on new Port Orchard Transit Center

May 17, 2023, 3:28 PM | Updated: 3:39 pm

kitsap transit survey...

Proposed Kitsap Transit Center for Port Orchard (Photo courtesy of Kitsap Transit)

(Photo courtesy of Kitsap Transit)

Kitsap Transit wants riders to help choose where a new Port Orchard Transit Center would be located through a new survey. The new transit center is aiming to be placed somewhere in downtown Port Orchard to help keep pace with the growing community.

“The facility that we have there currently is essentially a two-lane road which we have taken over one lane where the buses line up on the sidewalks and traffic has to drive around the buses,” Kitsap Transit’s Executive Director John Clauson said. “And there really isn’t much more as far as passenger amenities.”

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Clauson believes the buses, and its passengers, need more room as Kitsap County is projected to grow by 100,000 in population over the next 30 years. But the new transit hub won’t be ready anytime soon. The transit center is rumored to take longer than five years to complete.

“It might even take longer,” Clauson said. “The part of the area that we’re looking at currently houses the Kitsap Regional Library, and the library is planning to move into a new community center that the city is building. So, all of those pieces have to fall in place before that building will become available. It’s going to take us a while. We’re just looking at a site right now. We’ll have to go through the environmental engineering, design, all of that and certainly soliciting funds to help construct it.”

Clauson said in addition to growing their facilities, it’s also expanding equipment.

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“A lot of the transit systems are moving rapidly into zero-emission equipment,” Clauson said. “We’ve got, by the end of 2024, supply chain issues might change that a little bit, but we expect to add 30 battery electric buses and we’re looking into the feasibility of generating our own hydrogen to do hydrogen fuel cell buses — yet another form of zero-emission. We’re in the process of wanting to expand our services on the road. We’re working hard to hire additional operators, but we’ve got plans to expand our service substantially.”

To sound off on which location a new Kitsap Transit hub would fit best, complete the city’s survey here. The survey closes June 6.

Follow Micki Gamez on Twitter or email her here.

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Kitsap Transit wants feedback on new Port Orchard Transit Center