PUNXSUTAWNEY — Punxsutawney Borough Council announced news that everyone has been waiting to hear for the last six years: That the Area Transportation Authority (ATA) terminal in Punxsutawney is ready to move ahead with construction within the next few weeks.
Monday, council President Susan Glessner said it has been six years since the project first began, which involved the demolition of a group of buildings along North Findley Street.
Glessner said there has been some criticism of council members because many borough residents think that nothing was ever going to happen with the site nearly two years after the buildings were demolished.
Council had partnered with ATA in order to have the terminal constructed, Glessner said, adding that the borough had agreed to have the buildings demolished and make Torrence Street a two-way street.
Glessner said that she spoke with ATA Chief Executive Mike Imbrogno, who said that the project has received final approval from its board.
ATA had to wait for approval from various government agencies, such as the Historic Commission and DEP, before the project could be approved, she said.
The project has received final approval, and everything has been put out to bid several meetings ago, Glessner said. Jerry Bankovich of KTH Architects will meet with the successful bidders within the next two weeks.
Glessner said she was told by Imbrogno that groundbreaking for the terminal is anticipated soon.
“It has been a long time coming, and I think council still believes it’s a good project, and it will mean a lot to the downtown,” she said.
At a public meeting in March, it was revealed that four to five buses will be stored at the site, and throughout the day from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., the bus terminal will be one of the regular stops on the route.
There will not be a fuel station at the terminal, as the buses will fuel up from a contractor at a separate location. The vehicles will be washed at a DuBois location.
In 2009, the borough partnered with ATA in the demolition of buildings located along North Findley Street, including the former Punxsy Beauty School, Spencer Building and the Army-Navy Club.
It is not known if the terminal is to be one or two stories, and if it will house any retail businesses.
Glessner said all the details will be revealed once the contracts have been finalized.
An exact date of construction is unknown as of yet.