CyRide Second Bus Storage Facility Expansion Public Input Opportunity
Title VI Equity Analysis
CyRide is in the process of determining the feasibility of expanding its facility (currently located at 601 N. University Blvd.) to a second location, as a result of exponential growth over the last decade. Prior to constructing any new transit facilities, CyRide must consider how the location of the proposed facility may impact the affected minority and low-income communities. While the impacts of constructing and operating a facility need to be environmentally analyzed for potential impacts, the selection of the site location must also be scrutinized to ensure that the site was selected in a non-discriminatory manner. Please review the Title VI Equity Analysis document for additional information. This initial public meeting will conduct outreach to the community and help determine if there are any potential impacts for minority populations near the two possible sites. The preferred site must be selected without regard to race, color or national origin. Public comments regarding any impacts of either of the top two sites will be taken from August 23 to September 23, 2019.
A public open house to explain this possible expansion will be held as follows:
Thursday, September 5, 2019
4:00 - 6:30 pm
601 N. University Blvd.
2nd Floor Conference Room
Public comments will be taken from August 23 to September 23, 2019.
The summary below provides information on the need for a second facility and site selection process CyRide has undertaken and the result, which includes the top two locations identified. Additionally, a more detailed discussion of these activities is described in the following two, federally-required documents:
- Draft CyRide Facility Feasibility Study - Details the need for expansion; the site selection process, including the public open house; and then based on upon this documentation and public input, selected a "preferred site."
- Draft Title VI Equity Analysis - Ensures the top locations were selected without regard to race, color, or national origin through a comparison of each site's census tract and county demographics.
Facility Expansion Need
Over the past twelve years, CyRide has grown from a transit service providing approximately 4 million rides to approximately 6.5 million rides, with a fleet that has grown from 61 to 84 buses. This rapid growth has left the transit system with functions undersized and a lack of space to store buses at its current facility (currently over 15 buses are being parked outside each day) and additional vehicles are parked off-site at a City of Ames-owned gravel lot. The space needs analysis completed by CyRide found that CyRide's current operations should be cited on a lot of at least 11 acres - it currently has 4.5 acres available (40% of its space needs). This lack of space contributes to other challenges, such as higher on-property accidents, maintenance inefficiencies and higher operational costs.
CyRide's site selection process consisted of three phases, each analyzing a different subset of land parcels based on desirability for a facility expansion. The goal of this analysis was to find a site that could provide the functions lacking in CyRide's current facility/site (requiring at least 8 acres) while also allowing for the possibility that all CyRide functions could be operated from this site in the future (requiring 18-20 acres). The three phases were as follows:
- Phase 1 (Current Site) - Analysis of CyRide's current site at 601 University Blvd.
- Phase 2 (Adjacent Sites) - Analysis of four sites adjacent to its current location at 601 N. University Blvd.
- Phase 3 (Non-Contiguous Sites) - Analysis of all identified vacant parcels of land within the city limits and 1 mile west of Ames.
The result of this 12-month study identified two parcels of land as most desirable which are located west of the Ames city limits. (See maps denoting locations of the Region 11 transit provider - HIRTA for possible inclusion into the project for their Story/Boone County operations.) These two sites could provide the acreage required while being compatible with nearby current and future land uses.