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      Protest greets ribbon cutting for new Centro hub in downtown Syracuse

      Ribbon cutting at new Centro hub

      Though it won't officially open until September 4th, Centro held a ribbon cutting Friday afternoon to officially unveil its new transit hub at the southern edge of downtown Syracuse.

      The new $18.8 million facility features an indoor area where passengers can wait for buses and avoid adverse weather conditions. Centro will provide round the clock security that will include off duty law enforcement officers and surveillance cameras.

      Prior to the ceremony, Disabled in Action staged a protest to bring attention to their concerns about the design of the transit hub. They shouted, "Make it right, make it right."

      In a news release announcing the demonstration, DIA cited "Centro's failure to deliver on promised design features... that would make the facility not only accessible to people with disabilities, but usable by people with a wide range of abilities."

      Disabled in Action claims that Centro promised to exceed requirements under the American With Disabilities Act. The main concerns involve a lack of seating and problems with signage.

      The release claims that Centro's response to Disabled in Action's request to retrofit those problems does not address Centro's failure to be accountable and transparent about its decisions.

      The indoor facility will replace the current transfer station at the intersection of South Salina and Fayette Streets, relieving a great deal of congestion in the heart of the city.

      The decision to move the hub is seen as a catalyst for a major redevelopment of downtown Syracuse, including the 300 block of South Salina.

      Developers are renovating a number of historic buildings to turn the heart of the city into an attractive mix of urban living, retail and restaurants similar to what already exists in the Armory Square section.