By Courtney Sims |Staff Writer|
The blue tree located at CSUSB has turned more heads than any other tree on campus.
CSUSB has teamed up with Greenmeme and Omni Trans for the Blue Tree Project which provides eco-friendly transportation for the growing commuter population and new bus station’s designs.
The station’s design will not only impact the way transit riders experience their journey with Omni Trans but their experience with the environment as well.
“The blue design came as close to the color of the sky, on a clear day you can hardly see the image of the trees, but on a foggy or rainy day the tree images become visible, like they never left,” said David Rutherford.
Freya Bardell and Brian Howe, also known as Greenmeme are the forces behind the campus’ station’s design, citing the environment and student engagement as significant concepts.
“The color blue is really site specific, we had students research the air quality in San Bernardino and color variations of the sky and that’s how we came up with that color of blue,” said Bardell.
According to Bardell, in addition to the blue tree based design, she wanted to pay tribute to the trees that had to be removed from the location in order for the new station to be built.
“We noticed how the trees provided shade for the people, we felt we had to engage with them,” said Bardell.
Students are delighted with the Blue Tree Project and asserting that art truly does imitates life.
“I think that the idea behind the Blue Tree Project is quite innovative,” said student Heather Serdoz. “The concept of giving the tree new lives in each environment that it will be placed in encompasses how the lives we lead are ever changing and nothing will stay the same forever.”
Faculty members for the university believe the opportunity presented by Omni Trans has had a hand in the educational development for students on campus.
“Being able to provide students at CSUSB with hands-on learning experiences is a critical component of their educational and professional growth,” said Sant Khalsa, art department chair, as stated in a CSUSB press release.
Omni Tran’s new project, the sbX Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) incorporates 16 new art inspired stations for the 15.7 mile bus route throughout San Bernardino County.
The sbX BRT is considered the first of its kind and will help to reduce pollution by utilizing compressed gases and accommodating the predicted growing commuter population.
“The BRT is to help the anticipated increased demand for commuters that travel 10-15 miles, over the next 30 years as the population grows,” said Rutherford, Omni Trans Public Relations Manager.
If weather conditions continue to stabilize, the tree will be removed during CSUSB’s spring break. Due to the construction for the new art station the current university bus stops will be re-located.
In addition to the blue tree, designers Greenmeme have an exhibit in the Robert and Frances Fullerton Museum of Art (RAFFMA) located on the CSUSB campus.
The Blue Tree Project will be on exhibit from Feb. 18 through April 21. For additional information visit the RAFFMA website http://raffma.csusb.edu/.