New GoBus stop being built

Awaiting a consistent dry spell for concrete pouring lies a hole in the front left corner of the Armory lawn in Marietta.

“I need at least a day and a half of clear, dry weather for pouring and setting,” said Safety-Service Director Jonathan Hupp.

But it’s not just a concrete pad that’s going in the spot where the GoBus stops four to six times per day, it’s the future location of a small shelter for bus riders.

“Tanner (Huffman, public facilities foreman) built that already and it’s sitting in (Fire) Station Two until the weather breaks,” explained Hupp of the GoBus-funded project. “I’m very grateful for the generosity of the GoBus group. The administration has really enjoyed working with them to not only bring this needed service out from Kmart into a secured and lighted structure downtown that’s safer and more functional but also the GoBus group was able to get the concrete funded.”

It’s a simple windowed design to protect travelers from rain and wind while allowing the enjoyment of spring through fall weather. When facing the Armory from the street, it will be on the left corner of the lawn.

“I think that it will certainly provide extra comfort, especially for Marietta College students that have luggage, to have a dry place while they’re waiting for the bus,” noted Councilwoman Cindy Oxender. “I did have some people voice concerns asking why not place the stop on the side of the Armory, but unfortunately due to the design of the space outside the Armory before I was on council the bus can’t navigate a turn on the side of the building.”

Oxender said to tie the 6-foot-by-12-foot structure into the feel of the downtown street she is working with Marietta Main Street on surrounding additions.

“I think the offer from Marietta Main Street to fund decorative planters on either side of the shelter will enhance the area,” she said.

Charlie Clay, owner of Dad’s Primitive Workbench, across the street from the Armory and post office, said he has seen the GoBus used when he walks down Front Street, especially on Cash Mob Mondays on the first Monday of each month.

“We see people getting on and off each time when we’re headed to the store of that month,” he said. “It’s a service that’s essential to Marietta and no one wants to sit in the rain.”

He said he just hopes the shelter complements the historic nature of the downtown.

“The (mock-up) is basic, it doesn’t scream city, but adding planters would look nice,” he added.

According to Claudia Bashaw, GoBus manager for the Hocking Athens Perry Community Action, the bus is used more by those visiting Marietta than departing from the area.

“In 2017, we had around 900 people get on the GoBus from our Marietta stop location,” she said. “And just over 1,100 people get off the bus in Marietta.”

Often those patrons are arriving to utilize the low-cost transportation option during council committee meetings or on the weekends for day trips to Columbus or Cleveland.

“The GoBus does serve a need in this community,” said Hupp. “I have met people down there traveling not only to Cleveland and Cincinnati but even met a couple going down to North Carolina.”

To see bus stop times and book a ticket on the GoBus, visit ridegobus.com.

At a glance

¯ A 6-foot by 12-foot barrel roof shelter is to be installed in the front left corner (from the street) of the Armory lawn in Marietta in the coming weeks at the GoBus stop.

¯ The structure and concrete will be funded through GoBus, at no cost to the city.

Source: Marietta City Administration.

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