The ribbon has finally been cut on the EMTA’s brand new facility years after its completion.

It’s been more than a decade in the making along with years of waiting due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but on June 14 the 72 million dollar expanded EMTA facility opened its doors to the public.

It’s been a long time coming, but now that the facility is open the next step for the EMTA is to look for vendors to fill the retail space.

By doing so they hope to help solve a long time issue in Erie.

It’s been years in the making, but finally on Tuesday evening the new Erie Metropolitan Transit Authority facility opened its doors to the public.

“We battled the obstacles of COVID over the last couple of years. We moved into the building two and a half years ago and we are finally able to have a ribbon cutting, have people outside, and have a group outing,” said Jeremy Peterson, CEO of EMTA.

This 72 million dollar expansion was made possible with local, state, and federal funding. This is also more than just a transportation hub.

One of the main goals that this new EMTA facility has is to help the food desert issue in the Erie area.

With 18,000 square feet of retail space, the hope is to fill it with tenants and vendors. This will bring shopping and food to downtown Erie.

“Along a transit line, people will hopefully in the near future be able to eat and here, shop and ultimately have this on a transit line,” said Peterson.

But they aren’t alone, the Erie Downtown Partnership helped them with the grand opening.

“Our role will be to support them to help promote leverage incentivize any business that they might bring into downtown,” said Emily Fetcko, Acting CEO of Erie Downtown Partnership.

Even though the building is open, the CEO of EMTA said that they are still looking for vendors and tenants to fill the space.

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It has been reported that there will be another event within the next two months. At that time the vendors will hopefully be moving into the building.