BIRMINGHAM, ALA.—On March 7, 2014, city, state and federal officials gathered to break ground for Birmingham’s new intermodal transportation center. When completed in late 2015, the facility will accommodate Amtrak, intercity and local bus services, taxis, rental cars and bicycles. The approximately $30 million project is funded through $23.6 million in grants from the Federal Transit Administration’s Bus and Bus Facilities program and $6 million in city funds obtained through a voter-approved bond initiative.
The complex will span the land between the railroad viaduct and Morris Avenue from 16th to 19th Streets. There will be two structures located on the eastern end of the property: one will house a large waiting area for Amtrak and Greyhound bus passengers while the other will provide space for local MAX buses. A surface parking lot will occupy the western part of the property.
Designed by Giattina Aycock Architecture Studio and Hoskins Architecture, the intermodal center will include large expanses of glass, thereby providing bright interiors flooded with natural light. Space for retail and restaurants will help generate activity throughout the day and evening.
The center will be a fitting complement to Railroad Park, a nearby greenspace that opened in 2010. Nineteen acres on the south side of the rail viaduct were reshaped to create small hills and a lake; more than 600 hardwoods, evergreens, and flowering trees frame an amphitheater, playgrounds and grassy fields.