New San José bus terminal for routes to Nicaragua, Nicoya

July 30, 2015

Travelers departing from Costa Rica’s capital to Nicaragua and to some locations along the Pacific coast, including Jacó, will depart from a new bus terminal starting Monday, August 3.

The four-floor station — called Terminal 7-10, located between the capital’s 7th Avenue and 10th Street — will house routes from San José to six destinations in four provinces, including to Paquera on the Nicoya peninsula. The brand new facilities include a shopping center, food court, parking lot and other services.

Starting Monday Transportes Jacó will operate Route 655 to the popular Pacific beach town and Transportes Cóbano will operate Route 631-A to Paquera in Puntarenas.

Buses Alfaro will operate Routes 503, 1502 and 1507 to Nicoya and Santa Cruz in Guanacaste. Transportes San José-Venecia will offer transportation on Route 205 to the northern canton of San Carlos in Alajuela; Transportes Unidos La 400 will have two bus routes to Heredia; and Central Line will have a San José-Managua service.

Local business groups Portafolio Inmobiliario y Grupo Zen obtained a license from the Public Transportation Council (CTP) in 2008 to operate the terminal at its current location. They invested $10 million in the construction of the facilities, which offer space for 82 stores, of which 78 are already under contract, the companies said Thursday in a written response.

Businesses include department stores, banks, sporting goods stores, gift shops, delis, bakeries and a hardware store.

Station administrators estimate some 10,000 to 15,000 people will move  through the terminal every day.

New Terminal 7-10 facilities in San José, July 2015.
The four-floor facility includes parking lot, food court, offices and 82 spaces for businesses. (Courtesy of Terminal 7-10)

Security concerns

The area where the new bus station is located is known as San José’s “Zona Roja,” or the Red Zone, historically one of the capital’s most dangerous areas. Prostitutes and homeless people frequent the sidewalks.

San José’s Municipal Police Director Marcelo Solano Ortiz said the department increased the number of officers patrolling the area more than a year ago.

Solano said the San José Municipality, in coordination with the National Police and the Judicial Investigation Police, started joint operations in 2014 to reduce criminal activity in this sector of the capital, which is in the midst of transformation.

“We have increased surveillance in the area and we have been able to reduce gang activity and other criminal activities,” Solano said Thursday.

“Pedestrian traffic here is increasing mostly by the recent opening of a new boulevard on 8th Street, and also by other renovation projects, like a new park on 7th Street and the restoration of various historic buildings for cultural purposes. The new bus terminal is one of the reasons we increased surveillance operations, but is not the only one,” he said.

The police chief recommends that pedestrians going to the terminal take the new boulevard, as police are patrolling it heavily.

The municipal police department currently is remodeling a building on 7th Street, one block from the new terminal, which will host all of its departments in one location. Currently the offices of the San José police department are dispersed throughout the capital.

Renovation work on the new building is expected to be ready before the end of this year, Solano said.

The municipality is currently in negotiations with the National  Council for the Elderly to provide assistance for elderly homeless people. It’s also in talks with La Sala, a non-governmental organization that advocates for sex workers.

Location of the new terminal:

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