The Blue Water Area Transportation Commission (BWATC) is in the process of replacing 15 of its 33 bus shelters throughout the Port Huron area with modern shelters this fall. Five shelters have been completed including the shelters at Port Huron High and Port Huron Northern, Community Mental Health and the St. Clair County Courthouse. The replacement shelters are made with tempered glass and include solar-charged lighting for safety.

Dave McElroy, BWATC’s general manager, stated, “Many of our shelters had met their useful life and were certainly in need of replacement. We are grateful to the Federal Transit Administration and MDOT’s Office of Public Transportation for awarding BWATC grant funds totaling $154,000.00 to help purchase these modern, American-made shelters. Installation of the shelters is being done by local contractors utilizing local funds. We hope to replace the remaining 18 shelters sometime in 2024 after additional funding has been identified.”

Commissioner Linda Bruckner, BWATC Board Chairperson, added, “BWATC is proud to offer our riders new, upscale bus shelters using green, solar-powered lighting. Riders can enjoy the Ridership Experience while helping our environment. Safe and secure shelters enhance our community image and provide our riders greater customer satisfaction.”

Fourteen of the initial shelters were manufactured by Tolar Manufacturing Company of Corona, California. As North America’s leader in the design and fabrication of award-winning, best-in-class transit shelters, solar solutions, street furniture and digital/information displays, Tolar Manufacturing Company has a reputation for delivering uniquely designed, quality-built products on time and on budget. All Tolar Shelters are Build-America-Buy-America Compliant, using top-notch designs and materials — including steel and manufactured products — that are produced in the United States.  Tolar’s powder-coating process withstands high-pressure cleaning, graffiti removal solvents and the long-term impact of salt, sun and other extreme weather conditions.

The 15th shelter located on Electric Avenue at Community Mental Health — was manufactured by Brasco Manufacturing of Madison Heights, MI.  Over the past 30 years, Brasco has transitioned from being a traditional shelter manufacturer to a one-stop supplier of all things bus stop. They have partnered with industry leaders of digital signage, remote monitoring controllers and LED lighting to provide a simplified purchasing experience at the most competitive prices. By integrating these technologies upfront, they reduce field labor and cost for their customers, avoid poor aftermarket retrofits, and provide a vandal-resistant design that’s ready for the street. Brasco does all machining, assembling and powder coating in-house. Blue Water Area Transportation Commissioner Anita Ashford said, “We are genuinely excited for the new shelters that will add a safer presence for our riders!”

The Commission would appreciate the community’s help in monitoring the condition of these new shelters. If anyone or any neighborhood group is interested in adopting a shelter, please contact Lee-Perry Belleau, BWATC Community Relations at

To report vandalism or any other shelter issues, please contact BWATC Dispatch immediately at 810-987-7373 option #2, or email