Cherriots bus at Del Webb Operations Center (Amanda Loman/Salem Reporter)

The Salem Area Transit District Board of Directors, often known as the Cherriots, could decide Thursday night on the future location of the city’s next transit hub.

Cherriots staff are asking the board to choose one of three finalist sites for the project, which will take several years. The hub has long been a goal of the transit agency, but stalled in 2019 after Cherriots failed to strike a deal with Walmart to build in its parking lot.

The hub is intended to provide better transit service in the growing South Salem area so riders don’t have to travel downtown to transfer between routes.

In June, the council gave transit agency management the go-ahead to conduct a cost analysis and talk to landowners after a study by an outside firm identified three possible locations along southeast commercial street.

Now the council will review those sites again, using a report that estimates the cost to build each and the owners’ willingness to sell. The sites are:

-The southwest corner of Fabry Road Southeast and Commercial Street Southeast, which has several existing businesses, which could complicate the acquisition of the property. Developing a transit center would cost approximately $13.46 million.

-The northwest corner of Wiltsey Road Southeast and Commercial Street Southeast, where the owner may not be willing to sell, and some businesses would need to be relocated. Developing a transit center would cost approximately $18.58 million.

-The northeast corner of Wiltsey Road Southeast and Commercial Street Southeast, which likely has a willing seller and some protected tree species that might complicate the design. Developing a transit center would cost approximately $13.45 million.

More details on the sites are available from page 125 of the advice package.

On Thursday, the board will also consider adopting a strategic plan for diversity, equity and inclusion; and hear reports from Cherriots management on agency operations.

To participate: The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 28 in the Senator’s Courtroom on the ground floor of Courthouse Square, 555 Court St. NE Members of the public can attend the meeting in person or watch a live stream. live via Zoom, on CC: Media, channel 21 or YouTube. Public comments can be made live during the meeting on Zoom, or by email at [email protected]

-Rachel Alexander


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