Friday afternoon saw elected officials, BJCTA staff and board members, and representatives from Amtrak gathered next to the building currently serving as Central Station to break ground on Birmingham’s new intermodal transit center. Remarks made during today’s event suggest the new facility will have three times the public space of our namesake (it got some attention if its own recently).
The ceremony took place where temporary structures will be built in the next 2-4 weeks that will be used by MAX buses while the existing structure is demolished and the new $30 million facility is built. Mayor Bell said he expected construction to take between 18-24 months.
The block located between 18th and 19th Streets will contain Amtrak and BJCTA offices. The block between 17th and 18th will serve as the main waiting area for MAX buses, with the last block (the location of today’s groundbreaking) being used for parking (and possibly for Megabus pick-up/drop-off).
A release posted to the City Council’s website shows just how many types of transportation are to be supported by the new complex, “including passenger trains, intercity bus, local bus system, taxis, shuttles, automobiles and bicycles.” A temporary sign sits on the site, located at the corner of Morris Avenue and 17th Street, shows interested bus passengers and curious residents what the facility will look like when completed.