COTA completes fixed route bus stop assessment; construction underway

(Press Release) — Through close collaboration with the Department of Public Works and 3K Corporation, the contractor for this project, the Commonwealth Office of Transit Authority or COTA recently completed its site assessment for the 112 bus stops for Route 1A and 1B of its planned fixed route transportation system, with construction of concrete pads and the installation of bus stop signs currently underway.

Route 1A will start in Garapan and will loop around Coral Tree Ave. (Hotel Street) along Micro Beach towards the Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation. It then flows out unto Chalan Pale Arnold Road (Middle Road), through the intersection turning left onto Chalan Mgsr. Guerrero Road then turning right onto Tun Antonio Apa Road leading to the Northern Marianas College campus and will circle back the same way it started.

For a link to the Route 1A map, please visit:

Click to enlarge
Bus stop site assessment with COTA staff, DPW Federal Highway Inspector James Reyes, and 3K Corporation.Bus stop site assessment with COTA staff, DPW Federal Highway Inspector James Reyes, and 3K Corporation.
Construction of the bus stops along Chalan Msgr. Martinez Road in As Lito.  COTA photosConstruction of the bus stops along Chalan Msgr. Martinez Road in As Lito. COTA photos

https://platform.remix.com/map/a8d35af/line/38ee39a?latlng=15.18721,145.76214,z13&dir=0.

Route 1B will begin at Paseo de Marianas on Beach Road then heads southbound passing through the Saipan Northern Islands Leadership Memorial and the United States Postal Services. It then moves back towards Beach Road, going southbound towards the Pacific Islands Club, through Koblerville passing by the Tototville Estate, then heads eastbound along Chalan Mgsr. Martinez Road passing by the Nutritional Assistance Program Office in As Lito. It then flows through As Lito Rd. to the Shell Dandan Service Station, then heads westward along Chalan Msgr. Guerrero Road, passing by the Joeten Dandan Commercial Center towards the NMC intersection traffic light leading into the campus, and returns back to the starting point of Route 1B.

For a link to the Route 1B map, please visit:

https://platform.remix.com/map/a8d35af/line/30f64f2?latlng=15.18721,145.76214,z13&dir=0.

COTA Community Planner and Title VI Coordinator Diego B. Songsong underscored the importance of the location of every bus stop along the route.

“We recognized the importance of the bus stop locations as they will be the point of contact between the passenger and the COTA transit service. Each bus stop location’s functional and performance-related concerns is addressed in order to achieve the proposed Saipan Public Transit Fixed Route System’s overall goal of providing timely, safe, and convenient transportation for the community. We are so pleased that we have reached the construction milestone in preparation of the actual implementation of the fixed route system,” Songsong said.

Special Assistant for Public Transportation Alfreda P. Camacho said this is just the latest of several milestones for COTA, all leading up to the rollout of the route within the 2018 calendar year.

“This is an exciting time for COTA as we continue to push through to expand our services and get this fixed route system up and running for the people of our commonwealth. Thank you to the hard working staff of DPW and its Federal Highway Office for their time and partnership to ensure that this project is completed accordingly,” Camacho added.

Gov. Ralph D.L.G. Torres noted that COTA’s movement over the last several months has been very significant and reaffirms the administration’s commitment to an efficient and effective public transportation system for the commonwealth.

“COTA has been making great strides in its planning and development and is inching closer to having a fixed route system with a fleet of buses moving throughout the island. Access to transportation is the one of the most important factors in an individual’s ability to escape poverty and seek out more economic opportunities like finding a job or attending a class. We will continue to make sure this vision of having a full-fledged transit system becomes a reality within 2018,” Governor Torres said.

This project was awarded to 3K Corporation for $118,856 on July 31, 2017 and is funded in whole by grant funds from the Federal Transit Administration through the U.S. Department of Transportation.