Since 2010, Lawrence Transit has operated the majority of bus transfers from temporary locations in Downtown. Site selection studies in 2014 and 2018, in addition to a TIGER grant application in 2016, informed potential viable sites for a permanent facility. In July 2020 the City and University of Kansas agreed to develop Central Station on university property located at Bob Billings & Crestline Drive.
Because the project site is not located near a current transfer area, a Route Redesign Study was conducted in 2021-2022 to take advantage of this new facility. In the course of the Route Redesign Study, it became clear that permanent improvements for Downtown transfers are required to facilitate routes that will still operate in that area. Downtown Station improvements are now separate from the Central Station project.
Upon completion of Central Station, 5 routes will continue to serve Downtown Station. More than $1.6 million of state funds have been awarded for Downtown Station, and the bulk of public outreach, site selection, and concept design is anticipated to happen in 2024, with construction likely in 2025.
Status + Timeline + Next Steps
Project Start: July 2020
Project End: Q4 2025
Milestone 1: Conduct Public Outreach and Concept Design (April 2021–August 2021) – Completed
Milestone 2: Conduct Public Outreach to Determine Geographic Boundary and Site Selection Criteria (Estimated Q1 2024) – Not Started
Milestone 3: Conduct Public Outreach to Identify All Sites to be Evaluated Using Site Selection Criteria (Estimated Q2 2024) – Not Started
Milestone 4: Evaluate and Rank All Sites, City Commission to Select 3-5 Sites for Concept Design (Estimated Q3 2024) – Not Started
Milestone 5: Develop Concept Design, City Commission to Select 1 Site to Advance to Final Design (Estimated Q4 2024) – Not Started
Milestone 6: Develop Design + Engineering Documents (Estimated Q1–Q2 2025) – Not Started
Milestone 7: Award Contractor (Estimated Q2 2025) – Not Started
Milestone 8: Begin Construction (Estimated Q2 2025) – Not Started
Milestone 9: Complete Construction (Estimated Q4 2025) – Not Started
Downtown Station, now separate from the Central Station project, is expected to restart public engagement in 2024. To achieve the result of a community-supported site for Downtown Station, 3 steps are needed to make a site selection. The first step will be to survey the public to determine the criteria that will be used to evaluate sites and identify a firm geographic boundary for “Downtown,” within which the site must be located.
Lawrence Transit is currently developing a plan and approach to Milestone 2 and will notify the public when the next public input opportunities are available.
Completed + Supporting Documentation
Prior Studies + Background Information
- 2014 Bus Transfer Location Analysis
- 2016 TIGER Grant Application
- 2018 Bus Transfer Location Analysis
Downtown Station Project Milestones
- Public Engagement Overview and Timeline
- Stakeholder Meetings Summary
- Stakeholder #1 Video – Lawrence Transit, KU, First Transit Staff
- Stakeholder #2 Video – City and University Advisory Committees
- Stakeholder #3 Video – City of Lawrence Staff
- Stakeholder #4 Video – University and Nearby Neighborhoods
- Stakeholder #5 Video – Social Service Providers + Community Resources
- Stakeholder #6 Video – Neighborhoods
- Stakeholder #7 Video – Transportation + Government Partners
- Stakeholder #8 Video – Downtown Businesses + Tourism
- General Public Session #1
- General Public Session #2
- Sustainability Presentation Video
- Concept: Site Designs
- City Commission Seeks Further Study on Downtown Site Selection