Bangor asking residents for ideas on future of Pickering Square bus hub

View of Pickering Square and Community Connector bus near the parking garage on March 16, 2013.
Carter F. McCall | BDN
View of Pickering Square and Community Connector bus near the parking garage on March 16, 2013. Buy Photo
Posted June 24, 2013, at 2:56 p.m.
Last modified June 24, 2013, at 6:41 p.m.

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BANGOR, Maine — Bangor officials want to know residents’ thoughts on the future of the city’s public transportation system as it relates to sometimes-troubled Pickering Square.

The city will host a public workshop about the Community Connector bus service and ways of improving the area around its Pickering Square hub at 2 p.m. Thursday in Council Chambers at Bangor City Hall, 73 Harlow St.

According to a notice of the event, the city would like to know:

• What’s good about the current arrangement?

• Can Pickering Square and the Community Connector be improved together where they are?

• Should the bus service be moved to a different location?

• What spots might be better?

• What do residents and businesses expect to see for Pickering Square, the parking garage and public transportation?

City officials have been weighing their options for the area on and off for more than a year after downtown residents raised concerns about panhandling, foul language, loitering, littering and brawls in Pickering Square near the Community Connector’s downtown bus hub.

A year ago, a City Council panel decided to pursue other options for addressing concerns in Pickering Square because moving the bus hub likely would have required a $25,000-plus study. Some of those actions, such as Bangor Police Department’s revival of a downtown Bangor walking beat and a citywide ban on synthetic marijuana, have noticeably improved the situation in Pickering Square, according to some downtown business owners and councilors.

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