Barstow, Calif. (July 19, 2019) – Today, Victor Valley Transit Authority (VVTA) representatives joined county and local officials to break ground on construction of its Barstow operations facility, which is slated for completion in spring 2020.
The new 8,500-square-foot facility will integrate with the existing VVTA CNG/LNG public Fuel Station at 100 North Sandstone Court. The new facility delivers a host of benefits compared to VVTA’s leased facility in east Barstow.
“We’re excited to see the operational savings the new location will deliver to the agency,” said VVTA Board Chair and City of Hesperia Mayor Larry Bird. “Refueling the buses from its current location has always been challenging and added a considerable expense to operations.”
The current 12-mile roundtrip to refuel adds 38,880 unnecessary miles annually. By relocating the new facility adjacent to the fueling station, VVTA will save more than $100,000 annually in operating expenses.
Construction of the new 5.5-acre facility will feature upgrades to the Compressed Natural Gas / Liquid Natural Gas fuel station, enabling a direct connection to the adjacent gas pipeline and eliminating the need to have fuel delivered by truck.
Following its July 2015 merger with Barstow Area Transit, VVTA purchased the CNG/LNG fuel station and its parcel from the City of Barstow. This strategic move provides additional benefits, including the ability for VVTA to incorporate zero emission battery electric buses into its Barstow fleet.
VVTA’s current facility is crammed deep within a tight commercial complex with limited access. The new facility is located right on Route 66 West Main Street. It features an onsite bus wash as well as access and plenty of storage for VVTA’s standard 40- and 45-foot buses. The current facility has neither of these features, which has been a limiting factor for implementing service improvements.
The new facility will feature three modern service bays, updated maintenance equipment, ample room for operations and administration staff, and a comfortable lobby for riders who come in to purchase bus passes.
The facility will feature four battery electric charging stations, battery electric storage, and a photovoltaic array. The agency will begin to operate battery-electric buses from its Barstow location in 2020.
“We’re pleased to see the quality of service VVTA has brought to the Barstow area,” said City of Barstow Mayor Julie Hackbarth-McIntyre. “This facility will help VVTA move forward with its successful plan to serve the Barstow community with excellent and efficient public transportation.”