ONTARIO, Calif. (KABC) -- Construction on the West Valley Connector Project in Ontario is officially underway.
The first phase of the project calls for 19 miles of dedicated bus-only lanes from the Pomona Regional Transit Center to Victoria Gardens in Rancho Cucamonga with 21 stations along the route.
"Ultimately, the streamline travel experience will provide access to major activity centers like the airport and the convention center as well as Ontario Mills and Victoria Gardens," said Dawn Rowe, President San Bernardino County Transportation Authority and San Bernardino County Board of Supervisor Chair.
The $310 million price tag is funded with federal, state, and local Measure I monies. The new line is meant to provide motorists with an alternative to sitting in traffic with transit signal priority that will allow buses to avoid congestion.
"To make transit work, you need connectivity between different modes, and you are going to see that demonstrated here between bus, rail, the airport and all other means," said Alan Wapner, president of the Ontario International Airport Authority.
The West Valley Connector will be San Bernardino County's second rapid bus line. As part of the county's zero emissions initiative, buses will operate on batteries.
"You'll be able to go from Victoria Gardens all the way to the Pomona Transit system, get off the Purple Line, get on the Silver Stream on that BRT... continue on to Downtown Los Angeles," said John Dutrey with Omnitrans.
The second phase will eventually connect Haven Avenue to Kaiser Permanent Medical Center in Fontana. But officials are already looking to connect to points beyond.
"We are determined to bring the Brightline to San Bernardino County and that is the high-speed train that will take you to Las Vegas," said Dutry. "So, you'll be able to get on the Purple Line, go to the Cucamonga Station, go to Las Vegas or vice versa (and) come back."
Construction will wrap up and service will begin on the West Valley Connector in the Spring of 2026.