WHITTIER – Rio Hondo College on Tuesday broke ground for a new transportation center that will provide an all-in-one transit hub for members of the campus community.

The Rio Plaza project, in planning for more than three years, will feature restrooms, vending machines, bike lockers and shade structures.

“It is indeed a pleasure and an honor to break ground out here on the transportation center,” Board of Trustees President Gary Mendez said. “We’re doing things to invite the community more into Rio Hondo College.”

Mendez, a former Rio Hondo College student, showed off his bus pass from 1990, noting that he spent many hours awaiting buses at the College.

Student Diana Macias shared how she is the third in her family to rely on buses to pursue their education at Rio Hondo College.

“As students here at Rio Hondo College, it is so heartwarming and it is so encouraging to know we have an administration that cares,” said Macias, a political science major and member of the College’s award-winning debate team.

The event included a salute to partners in the effort, including Del Terra Group, Foothill Transit, Los Angeles County Department of Public Works, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transit Agency, Norwalk Transit System, the Office of former Los Angeles County Fourth District Supervisor Don Knabe and Westberg + White Architects.

RHC_PLAZA_1: Members of Rio Hondo College’s Board of Trustees, Superintendent/President Teresa Dreyfuss and student Diana Macias break ground on a transportation center dubbed Rio Plaza.

RHC_PLAZA_2: Renderings depict Rio Plaza, a transportation center that will feature restrooms, bike lockers, vending machines and shade structures.