Sun Tran unveils new bus facility

Tucson, AZ-based Sun Tran opened its new 25-acre, $56 million Northwest Bus Facility on Thursday. The new building will store and maintain Sun Tran’s expanding fleet of buses, while also allowing continued expansion of transit service in the area.

Sun Tran’s new facility now has the capacity to operate and maintain 250 buses for the entire Tucson region. Although the facility is complete, Sun Tran will continue to operate approximately one-third of the service from its current location.

“The completion of this facility represents a major milestone for our community,” said Kate Riley, Sun Tran general manager. “This state-of-the-art complex was built in three phases to accommodate the growing need for transit options in our region.”

Phase I was completed in 2005 and included the construction of Sun Tran Boulevard and the City fueling facility, with $8 million of Federal Transit Administration (FTA) funds and 1994 City of Tucson bonds.
Phase II was completed in 2009. It included the operations building and a portion of the maintenance facility, and was funded with $29 million of Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) and FTA. The second phase, built to accommodate operation of up to 150 buses, included 17 bus bays to repair and maintain the fleet, a fare retrieval area, bus wash and dispatch center.

Phase III was completed in December 2011 and includes expansion of the maintenance building, a new administration building for regional transit operations and more bus parking. This phase was funded with just over $16 million from FTA’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) stimulus program and $3 million in funding from the RTA.