It may not look like any bus stop you've ever seen, but it ought to fit right in with the neighborhood.
When the covers come off for good sometime in early February, the new "Anchorage Museum Transit Transfer Facility" at the corner of Sixth Avenue and C Street will be bigger, fancier, higher-tech and better-placed than any other People Mover shelter in town:
• 72 feet long, 9 feet wide, open to the air and brightly lit through the night.
• Designed by architects who produced the revamped, expanded museum and embellished by an artist.
• No snow or ice. The walkway in front of the stop will be heated through the winter.
• Electronic signage that tracks buses moving across town. People waiting will be able to see not just when their ride is supposed to arrive, but when it's actually likely to.
• And expensive. At $875,000, plus a couple of change orders, it will have cost around 30 times as much as your average transit shelter.
The hot new bus stop has been in the works for almost three years, and under construction since last summer. The city's project manager, Randy Bergt, says he expects it to be open for business around the first of next month.
Couched at the intersection of two of downtown Anchorage's busiest streets, it will accommodate around 700 passengers a day and replace a couple of brown box huts put up by the People Mover system after the 9/11 terrorist attacks led to the closure of a former bus staging area in front of the Federal Building, the last good downtown bus stop east of the main transit center at Sixth and G Street.
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