An artist's rendering of Vancouver, Washington's first rapid transit bus, "The Vine."

An artist’s rendering of Vancouver, Washington’s first rapid transit bus, “The Vine.”


C-TRAN breaks ground on a new bus rapid transit project Monday in Vancouver, Washington.

The $53 million bus rapid transit project — called “The Vine” — will include 34 stations. Ten new hybrid buses will travel the route.

“This will actually be the region’s first bus rapid transit project,” said Scott Patterson, C-TRAN’s director for planning, development and public affairs.

Though Eugene and other Oregon communities have the service, there are none in the Portland metro area.

He said the buses will travel from downtown Vancouver to Westfield Vancouver Mall along Fourth Plain Boulevard and Fort Vancouver Way — C-TRAN’s busiest route.

“Our community college, Clark College, is located there; and it’s one of the major destinations,” Patterson said.

The Vine is expected to save riders up to 10 minutes in travel time compared to existing buses.

Federal dollars account for 80 percent of the funding. Another 6 percent came from Washington state, and C-TRAN paid for the remainder.

“We have worked for four years toward implementing this very important project,” Jeff Hamm, C-TRAN’s executive director and CEO, said in a statement. “C-TRAN is committed to minimizing potential construction impacts on businesses, property owners, and transit riders throughout the duration of construction.”

Construction is expected to be complete in late 2016.