If you drive along Wills Creek Valley Drive near the Cambridge High School, Middle School and Intermediate School, you will notice a new building being constructed. That facility will soon be the new home of the Cambridge City School District’s Transportation Department.
In the past dozen years, Cambridge Schools purchased several new buses and soon will have a new transportation facility to park and take care of those new buses.
In 2010, the average age of the buses in use was 15 years old. Now, that average age is closer to five years old. However, the age of the transportation facility, typically known as the bus garage located next to Pine Field between North 10th
and North 11th
streets, is much older.
The garage itself, an alumni pole barn, is at least 40-years old. The office area, meeting room and driver’s lounge are housed in an adjacent cinderblock building that is at least 62 years old and probably closer to 80 years old.
The building served as a locker room when the Cambridge High School football team played games at Pine Field prior to the construction of McFarland Stadium which opened in 1960.
“These buildings have served us well, but are well past their primes,” Cambridge Superintendent Dan Coffman said. “They are old buildings, they are inefficient buildings, and they are inadequate buildings. It is past time to upgrade, and I am happy that we will soon have a new facility where we will be able to take care of our vehicles, our bus drivers, and transportation staff.”
The construction process started in July of 2021 when Cambridge City School District Board of Education selected V2Architects of Cambridge to complete schematic design, bidding, and construction administration of the transportation facility.
In March of 2022, the Board approved a resolution accepting a bid from Colaianni Construction LLC to construct the new transportation facility. Ground preparation began over the summer and recently the construction of a new building became visible to those driving along Wills Creek Valley Drive.
The new facility includes a wash bay, a service bay, a mechanic shop, a meeting/training room, office space, and a proper drivers lounge that includes both men’s and women’s bathrooms. The property also includes parking for 22 buses plus vans and other school vehicles.
The district is conscious of the residential area the new facility will be located near and is building and will maintain an appealing facility.
The administration also believes the new location near the High, Middle, and Intermediate schools, where 75 percent of our students attend, will cut down on the miles our buses travel thus creating efficiency in transportation costs.
Funding for the construction of the new transportation facility will come from COVID-19 Relief Funds and Permanent Improvement Funds.
District administration expects to be using the new facility next school year and is planning an open house at the new bus garage when construction is completed.