Project Manager

Jason Parrish
(707) 543-3341

 Project Schedule

Spring 2004 – Courthouse Square Area Study

Winter 2006 –  Transportation for Livable Communities (TLC)Grant

Summer/Winter 2007 – Design RFQ and RFP

Spring 2008 Kimley-Horn & Associates selected as Project Designer

Spring 2008-2010 Technical Advisory Committee Meetings

Spring/Summer 2009 – Public Art RFP

Summer 2009 – Design Completion

2/15/12 Pre-Bid Meeting

2/21/12 Close Construction Bidding

3/30/12 Council Award of Construction Bid

4/4/12 Contractor Notice To Proceed

5/14/12  Close First Street for Temp Transit Mall Improvements

6/3/2012 Open Temporary Transit Mall

6/3/12 Close Transit Mall – Initiate Construction

December, 2012 Complete Transit Mall Construction

Reopen Service in the Transit Mall - ASAP Weather and construction permitting

TBD  Grand Reopening of the Transit Mall

City of Santa Rosa > Departments > Transit > Transit Mall Revitalization
sketch of possible new arch design 


UPDATE: The Downtown Transit Mall, on Second Street has been reopened. There are some elements that have not been completed. Following is a summary of status of this project: 
Move in date is December 16th.  However, we still have a few improvements that will be completed/installed following the move-in date, including – completion of the bathrooms in March, artwork panels in the garage/new bus shelters toward the end of March, and new wayfinding signage that will be ready by the end of March.

Improvements in the Transit Mall include:

  • Doubling the amount of light while reducing the power by half, due to the new LED lighting throughout.
  • New video surveillance cameras throughout the Transit Mall tied into Police Dispatch
  • Regional signage that assists riders in using all the transit systems as a network
  • Wayfinding signage throughout the downtown that integrates with this Transit information for finding your way around downtown when you arrive by bus
  • New sidewalks that meet the ADA standard for slopes
  • Two high-visibility pedestrian crosswalk to improve ped safety in the Transit Mall
  • A large ArtStart mosaic in the center of the Transit Mall and artwork panels that are forthcoming
  • Cladding on the Transit Mall garage face that improves the customer experience, lighting, and signage
  • Restructured bathrooms to improve lighting, ventilation, and drainage… but also to ensure we meet all current ADA standards
  • New shelters on the north side of the Transit Mall that more than doubles the covered seating
  • A Customer service kiosk that will allow for additional materials to be stored and distributed on-site in the near term and provide an opportunity to locate staff or Transit-based vending machines in the future.
  • Refurbishing and reinstalling many prior fixtures, like the benches in the Transit Mall and the stainless steel fixtures in the restrooms.
  • Utilizing a lighter color palate and consistency in materials finishes, to provide a light modernist feel to the facility

As important as the new/additions are, we’re also benefiting from what has been removed:

  • High-pressure sodium street lighting with high energy usage is no longer there
  • Eliminating 70% of the pedestrian obstructions in the sidewalks by removing the big blue steel structure and archways
  • Having light poles that curve inward toward the road bed, as opposed to the straight vertical nature of the old blue steel structure, which provides a more open feeling on the sidewalks.
  • The custom concrete and masonry finishes on all the pedestrian areas that are problematic to repair/replace

All of the following departments played a role in the design and construction of the new Transit Mall:

  • Economic Development & Housing, especially the Parking and Economic Development Divisions
  • Community Development Department
  • Police Department
  • Fire Department
  • Information Technology Department
  • Recreation & Parks Department
  • City Manager’s Office
  • Utilities Department
  • Transportation & Public Works; CIP Teams, Field Services, Traffic Engineering, Right-of-Way Development, City Garage

As well, the following non-City businesses/non-profits/entities participated in the design of the Transit Mall:

  • TLCD Architecture
  • Kellog & Associates (Architecture)
  • Area Agency on Aging
  • Shultz Museum
  • Sonoma County Arts Council
  • Becoming Independent
  • AT&T
  • Sonoma County Transit
  • Golden Gate Transit
  • Mendocino Transit Agency

Local businesses in Sonoma County that participated in the construction include:

  • ArtStart
  • R.E. West Builders
  • B&L Glass
  • Lux Metals
  • Nessco
  • North Bay Concrete
  • T.C. Steel
  • Howdy's Drywall
  • CMA Cabinetry
  • Simpson Sheet Metal
  • Hardware Tech Inc.
  • Expert Plastering
  • Baswell Electric Construction
  • Alpha Fire Suppression
  • United Striping 101, Inc.


On Sunday, June 3, 2012 Santa Rosa’s Downtown Transit Mall will close for a major revitalization. A temporary Transit Mall will open the same day on First Street between Santa Rosa Avenue and D Street.

This is a very exciting project which has been in development for over 2 years. The planned improvements and features will enhance the transit experience for all who utilize the Transit Mall.


In addition to meeting regional and federal safety and Americans with Disabilities (ADA) requirements, the main goals of this revitalization project are to improve the overall transit experience for the 10,000 (average) passengers per day who utilize the Transit Mall. Another focus is to improve transit connectivity for bicyclists, pedestrians and people utilizing other regional transit providers.

Background and Stats

1986 photo of Transit Mall

The current Downtown Transit Mall was constructed in 1986. At the time, the adjacent properties on Second Street between Santa Rosa Avenue and B Street were undeveloped. Before moving to its Second Street location, the Downtown Transit Mall was located in Courthouse Square. At a cost equivalent to $4.5 million (in 2008 dollars), the move received positive community response and support.

The Santa Rosa Transit Mall is the largest regional transit hub in the North Bay. The Transit Mall can accommodate 14 buses at one time. Thirty transit routes served by 525 buses (375 Santa Rosa CityBus and 150 buses from other transit providers) utilize the Transit Mall every week day. In addition to Santa Rosa CityBus, the Transit Mall is a major regional hub for:

  • Sonoma County Transit
  • Golden Gate Transit
  • Mendocino Transit Authority

Santa Rosa’s Downtown Transit Mall is open for business 18 hours per day, 358 days per year. Of the 10,000 average weekday passengers who travel through the Transit Mall, 80% are Santa Rosa CityBus patrons and the remaining 20% utilize other transit providers.


The current Transit Mall is now 26 years old. Transit travel as a result of increased regional population usage has increased dramatically, resulting in the following:

  • Crowded sidewalks
  • People, lots of people, wheelchairs, bicycles, baby strollers, folding carts
  • Antiquated and aging infrastructure
  • Sidewalks and access features are not ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliant
  • Unsightly, inconsistent patches and repairs
  • Extremely inadequate technology infrastructure

photo of crowded Transit Mallphoto of cracked Transit Mall sidewalk

In addition, over the past 26 years the area has seen complete development of the adjacent properties, which brings another set of challenges:

  • Creating an environment that satisfies the diverse realities of this multi-functional space
  • Limited space – no room for expansion
  • Limited access for emergency exits and driveways

New Features and Enhancements

sketch of new Transit Mall

Of course this project will incorporate the modifications and improvements required to meet all Federal and Regional safety and ADA regulations, and while extremely important, the project also includes an aesthetic overhaul of the amenities and design elements to greatly improve customer service and individual experience.

     Pedestrian Improvements: Sidewalks

  • Sidewalk obstructions reduced by 65%
  • Furniture placement recongifigured
  • Sidewalk grade will meet ADA standards
  • Attractive design elements will be incorporated
  • An additional pedestrian crosswalk will be installed

     Pedestrian Improvements: Shelters and Lighting

  • Covered seating increased from 15 benches to 50 benches
  • Covered shelter on the north side of the Transit Mall will triple in size and capacity
  • Coordinated design elements will also be incorporated into the shelter roof panels
  • Site function will be focused on the pedestrian
  • Improved, high-efficiency lighting will be installed

Pedestrian Improvements: Safety and Security

  • Active Measures
    Digital Video Surveillance System
    On-site Customer Service Representatives
    Pedestrian traffic signal has already been installed at Second and B Streets
  • Passive Measures
    Lighting improvements at the pedestrian level
    Additional pedestrian crosswalk to accommodate mid-block access
    Design elements to enhance the aesthetic appeal

Additional customer service enhancements will include:

  • Information kiosk
  • Signage for improved connectivity and wayfinding
  • Infrastructure to support AVL (Automatic Vehicle Location) real time signage
  • Public artwork 

The upgrades are designed to incorporate current and planned environmental benefits:

  • Recycled materials
  • High-efficiency lighting
  • Support for mixed alternative transportation modalities
  • Adjacent bicycle facilities

 Temporary Transit Mall

A Temporary Transit Mall will be installed on First Street between Santa Rosa Avenue and D Street.

On Monday, April 2nd the construction of a new driveway at City Hall began in preparation for the Temporary Transit Mall.  The new driveway, entrance/exit to the main City Hall parking lot, will be located on D Street between First Street and Sonoma Avenue. When construction is completed the current driveway on First Street will be closed. 

In mid-May, First Street will be closed to all traffic between Santa Rosa Avenue and D Street to prepare for the Temporary Transit Mall. This one block section of First Street will remain closed to vehicular traffic, with the exception of transit buses, until the Downtown Transit Mall (located on Second Street between B Street and Santa Rosa Avenue) renovation project is completed. The completion date is expected to be early Fall 2012. 

The Temporary Transit Mall on First Street will open on Sunday, June 3, 2012. 

All time schedules may fluctuate based on weather and other unforeseen events and conditions.

Aerial view of the First Street Layout for the Temporary Transit Mall


 Secured Funding

 TLC Grant*  $850,000
 TDA Article IV  $500,035
 FTA Section 5307  $436,000
 MTC Wayfinding  $263,000
 TOTAL  $2,049,035
* Transportation for Livable Communities
   Transportation Development Act
   Federal Transit Administration
   Metropolitian Transportation Commission