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The Metropolitan Transit System is trying to build a new bus yard and it has nothing to do with attempts to build a downtown convadium.

MTS has five large facilities where it stores and maintains buses around the county. Within the next 10 years, the agency will need a sixth facility.

This is all unrelated to whether the agency also needs to relocate its downtown bus yard in order to accommodate a new convention center-stadium project, an MTS spokesman said.

This is worth clarifying because two separate documents referred generally to the agency’s need for a new bus yard at the same estimated cost − $100 million – as the one anticipated for a convadium-forced relocation of their downtown facility.

The new bus yard is included in a list of transportation-related projects that the San Diego Association of Governments, or SANDAG, is considering including in a ballot measure and tax increase that would go before voters in November.

In a publication for MTS staff, the agency also mentioned its need to secure long-term growth by building a new, $100 million bus yard. Studying the best location to fill that need was a priority for 2016, MTS CEO Paul Jablonski wrote.

Both of those documents refer to MTS’s need for an additional facility. Agency spokesman Rob Schupp confirmed that the need exists regardless of whether MTS has to relocate its existing downtown facility to make way for a convention center-stadium.

There’s a third bus facility that also has nothing at all to do with what happens if the city builds a downtown convadium: MTS has for a few years needed a staging area in the Little Italy area for buses cycling on and off their routes. SANDAG is now trying to roll that project into a downtown tower project that would give the agency office space and possibly include homes and retail space.

Andrew Keatts

I'm Andrew Keatts, a managing editor for projects and investigations at Voice of San Diego. Please contact me if you'd like at andrew.keatts@voiceofsandiego.org...

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