The North County Transit District (NCTD) in San Diego has applied for a $5-million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) Discretionary Grant.
If the agency’s application is successful, the money will be used to fund the planning of the proposed transit facility on Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton. Currently, the vast majority of individuals access the base in private cars creating significant congestion both entering and exiting the base. Three NCTD BREEZE bus routes are the only public transit serving Camp Pendleton.
In 2011, officials from NCTD and Camp Pendleton signed a cooperation agreement to explore the possibility of building a transit center on the base. Last year, the U.S. Marine Corps Installations Command provided conceptual approval for the transit center, which would serve NCTD’s COASTER passenger rail and potentially also serve Amtrak and Los Angeles-based Metrolink trains.
The Camp Pendleton Transit Center would make the area more economically competitive by connecting the tens of thousands of military, retired military and civilians, who live and work on base, or regularly access the base, with key employment centers in the region. Building the multi-modal transit center on base would decrease transportation costs for base residents and workers. By providing easy access to public transportation, the transit center would improve quality of life and enhance environmental sustainability by reducing dependence on foreign oil, improving air quality and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The transit center would also reduce vehicle miles traveled in private automobiles annually by more than 75 million and save more than 2.5 million gallons of fuel each year.
“The Camp Pendleton Transit Center is a true partnership between NCTD, the Marine Corps, the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) and our transportation partners Amtrak, the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) and Metrolink. This partnership believes the transit center would provide the full range of economic and environment benefits to the base as well as the entire region,” said Matthew Tucker, NCTD executive director.