Members of the Madison County Transit (MCT) Board of Trustees, along with the Agency for Community Transit (ACT) Board of Directors, ACT staff, contractors, and local and state elected officials, convened this morning to break ground on the future MCT Administration Building in Pontoon Beach, Illinois. The new facility will be located along Chain of Rocks Road on the north side of MCT’s current Base of Operations. The 27,000 square-foot, two-story, ADA compliant building will consolidate all base staff under one roof and will provide a clearly defined area for public access to the facility. In addition to staff offices, the new building includes an improved public lobby, (for job applicants, pass purchasers, individuals visiting lost & found, etc.), conference rooms, and facilities equipped with the latest security and technology designed to protect the Base of Operations.
“These facility improvements will not only allow us to make critical safety and security improvements at our Base of Operations,” said MCT Managing Director SJ Morrison. “The new Administration Building will replace workspaces located in four aging structures where staff is spread across the site, working above garages, in temporary trailers, in non-ADA compliant locations, and in areas that were never intended to serve as offices.”
Other site improvements include new video surveillance and access control systems, new computer servers, new fencing, and security gates at all entrances, as well as a new Chain of Rocks Road bus pull-off and shelter, new employee and visitor parking, site lighting, sidewalks, utility connections and improved storm water drainage and detention.
“The scope and scale of MCT services have changed quite a bit since our current site was designed and constructed 35 years ago. At that time, we were a small paratransit operation,” said Morrison. “But today, in addition to the Runabout service for the elderly and disabled, we operate 25 public bus routes carrying thousands of Madison County residents every day, we own and maintain the 135 miles of scenic MCT Trails, and operate the regional carpool/vanpool program known as RideFinders. As a result, the needs for office, storage space, meeting areas, training, as well as safety and security have changed significantly.”
Since 2014, MCT has successfully secured multiple grants to fund the design and construction of the new Administration Building and Base Improvement Project. Financial assistance for this project is being provided in whole or in part by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) which is under the jurisdiction of the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT), and the State of Illinois, Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT). The following FTA and IDOT funds have been awarded to MCT for this project: FTA Federal Grant: $4,093,827; IDOT Capital Grant: $6,000,000; IDOT Capital Grant (Rebuild IL): $4,800,000. MCT’s local cost is $205,865. In total, the project represents a $15,099,692 investment. After issuing an invitation for bids, MCT awarded the project to S.M. Wilson & Co. Additional work for this project has been or will be completed by AAIC (architect), Juneau & Associates (civil engineer), IMEG (electrical/mechanical/structural engineer), and Faith Group (IT & security design).
“We are thrilled to break ground on these important facility improvements for MCT and for the people of Madison County,” said Morrison. “And even more proud to announce that this project is being paid for with grants funds – MCT is bringing $15 million in state and federal funds to Pontoon Beach and Madison County.”
“This new facility, along with much needed safety enhancements will provide for a more secure and safe working environment for employees, vendors, suppliers, and visitors,” said MCT Board Chairman Ron Jedda. “Funding for the project came from state and federal capital grants, which can only be used for building design, construction, and safety/security enhancements and not for operational expenses.”
The Administration Building and safety updates are slated to be complete by the fall of 2023. For more information about MCT and its services, please visit www.mct.org, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 618-797-INFO (4636).