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Downtown San Marcos set to open mobility hub this fall

Construction+workers+Ever+Cruz+%28left%29%2C+Efrain+Alvarez+%28middle%29+and+Yovanni+Alvarez+%28right%29+work+on+the+soon-to-be-finished+Mobility+Hub+Sept.13+on+214+E.+Hutchison+Street.+Photo+credit%3A+Angelina+Cazar

Construction workers Ever Cruz (left), Efrain Alvarez (middle) and Yovanni Alvarez (right) work on the soon-to-be-finished Mobility Hub Sept.13 on 214 E. Hutchison Street. Photo credit: Angelina Cazar

Public access to a brandnew mobility hub will be available in San Marcos fall 2019, serving as a convenient transit hub and spot to gather downtown.
The downtown mobility hub, located at 214 E. Hutchison St., will serve as an access point for various types of public transportation. The hub will include parking spaces, bike racks and will soon serve as a bus stop location.
Along with acting as a transit location, the hub will offer several amenities to help travelers relax while spending time outside and around town like seating, shade, public art, a performance stage, a bike repair station, electric car charging ports and rain gardens. With these additions, the mobility hub would resemble a miniature downtown park.
Council Member Ed Mihalkanin said the city is working to make the spot a place for transit and gathering.
“Having a mobility hub along with its services in downtown San Marcos can benefit the community and add to its appeal,” Mihalkanin said.
The project itself has been in the works for several years. The lot, which was formerly a dry-cleaner, was originally planned as an additional downtown parking lot.
The space would have only been able to hold a select small number of cars. The idea of changing the lot into a mobility hub was initiated by San Marcos Main Street. After the program developed an initial design concept, city council approved the hub January 2018.
Alex Arlinghaus, former San Marcos main street worker, said making the lot into a mobility hub would add value to the community rather than leaving it as a parking lot.
“Wasting valuable land on storing a maximum of 12 cars is a silly idea, especially when there is already so much unused parking downtown,” Arlinghaus said. “That area is much more valuable to the community as a gathering place and transit hub.”
The mobility hub is conveniently placed downtown, a central spot for the community. The funding for the hub had a budget of about $350,000.
Fred Schmidt, psychology sophomore and commuter, said making the lot pleasing to look at and more useful to travel through would probably make students happy.
“As a commuting student, the convenience of the hub sounds like a great addition,” Schmidt said.
The City of San Marcos is aiming to have the lot finished by the week of Sept. 23 for a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

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