Fall 2018 Service Changes

It’s that time again…

It’s that time again, time to roll out the next batch of transit system service changes. Effective dates and scope of changes will vary greatly by transit agency. For this post, I’m going to divide each of the changes by transit agency and arrange by effective date.

Agencies included in this post

Hillsborough Area Regional Transit, Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority, Polk Citrus Connection, Sarasota County Area Transit, Palm Tran, & Hampton Roads Transit

Hampton Roads Transit (HRT)

Norfolk, Hampton, Newport News, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, & Portsmouth, VA

What’s Changing?

Seasonal Virginia Beach WAVE Routes 30 & 35 will be ending service for 2018. VB WAVE services will resume in May, 2019.

Customers can use alternative services to access the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.

  • Shore Dr between Pleasure House Rd & Great Neck Rd: Route 29
  • Virginia Beach Oceanfront & Atlantic Ave: Route 33

When are the changes effective?

Sunday, September 30, 2018 will be the final day of service for Routes 30 & 35 for 2018.

Where can I get more information?

On the HRT website, or by calling 757-222-6100.

Photo courtesy of Carlos A.

Palm Tran

Palm Beach County, FL

What’s changing?

Palm Tran will be implementing its system redesign called Route Performance Maximization (or RPM). This effort is very similar to the Mission MAX system redesign effort that Hillsborough Area Regional Transit implemented last year. The aim of RPM is to create more direct transit services with more uniform frequency, faster travel times, and a greater span of service.

The Palm Tran website has a dedicated comprehensive page on all of the approved changes and how you can plan your transit trip around the new schedules.

When are the changes effective?

Sunday, September 30, 2018 will be the first day of service under the RPM redesign.

Where can I get more information?

On the Palm Tran website, or by calling 561-841-4287.
The link above will go straight to the dedicated RPM page.

Polk Citrus Connection

Polk County, FL

What’s changing?

Several routes will be undergoing scheduling and/or routing changes to reflect ridership patterns, funding levels, and municipality agreements.

  • Route 15: Routing change to add more service within downtown Winter Haven.
  • Route 35: Routing changes in Frostproof.
  • Routes 40/44: Buses will begin serving the Winter Haven Amtrak station.
  • Route 59X: Route elimination due to low ridership.
  • Route 60: Saturday service will be discontinued due to low ridership.
  • Full listing of service changes can be viewed on the Citrus Connection website.

When are the changes effective?

A majority of the changes will take effect on Monday, October 1, 2018, though a couple of routes may have differing effective dates.

Where can I get more information?

On the Citrus Connection website, or by calling 855-765-5287.
Select the Routes tab at the top to view the new schedules and service change overview presentation.

Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART)

Hillsborough County, FL

What’s changing?

Three key routes will be changing – encompassing routing or scheduling changes.

  • Route 275LX: will be undergoing a minor routing change in Pasco County where northbound buses will serve the main entrance of Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel before arriving at the northern terminus at the Wiregrass Park-N-Ride Lot. Schedules will not change, and the southbound direction will not be affected. Northbound buses are already serving the new stop via temporary detour, but the detour will become permanent with this change.
    • Further enhancements to the 275LX will follow in December of 2018 (though possibly sooner) to include the introduction of the former Sarasota County Area Transit (SCAT) suburban coach buses. These buses include high-back reclining seats, individual reading lights and A/C vents, and overhead luggage racks.
  • Route 400 (MetroRapid): will see weekday frequency rolled back to every 15 to 30 minutes during the day with hourly late-evening service. For the past year, HART has fiddled with having MetroRapid buses depart every 12 to 15 minutes during the day on weekdays in an effort to help bolster ridership. However, this change has had a negative impact on service reliability – including bus bunching, buses running extremely late, and very short layover times (which weren’t allowing operators to take their proper breaks at the terminating points). Weekend service will remain largely unchanged.
  • Route 800 (TECOline Streetcar): will see the introduction of FARE FREE SERVICE, increased span of service, and increased frequencies during the week. These changes are all due to a Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) grant and will allow the streetcar to become a more viable alternate transportation option for both residents and visitors alike. The expansion in service will also allow for a more sturdier foundation for future system extensions.

When are the changes effective?

Sunday, October 7, 2018 will be the first day of the improved streetcar service, as well as changes for Route 275LX and MetroRapid.

Where can I get more information?

On the HART website, or by calling 813-254-4278
Select the Menu tab on the right, then select Maps and Schedules, followed by System Map and Schedules. On the schedules page, select the drop-down menu and scroll to the bottom to view the new schedules.

Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA)

Pinellas County, FL

What’s changing?

Several routes will undergo minor routing and/or scheduling changes to improve efficiency. Changes will also be made to shift resources from under-performing trips to higher ridership core services.

  • Routes 35 & 777 – The Central Ave Trolley & The Suncoast Beach Trolley: Both trolley routes will see map and/or time point changes. Overall schedules will only see very minor changes if any. For the CAT, maps have been changed to reflect current downtown St. Petersburg circulation. For the SBT, the southbound Clearwater Beach time point has been shifted to the new Clearwater Beach Transit Center platform along the Memorial Causeway – just prior to the beach roundabout.
  • Route 16: The first northbound weekday trip will be rolled back by 5 minutes to improve connectivity to the first northbound 100X trip at Gateway Mall.
  • Route 52: This will be the most drastic change in the system, with resources from current Routes 97 & 98 being rolled into weekday peak Route 52LX (Limited Express) trips that will skip the Avalon Ave/150th Ave N loop and serve the Carillon Business Park. Stops along the LX corridor will be limited to help reduce travel times, and the overall combination setup will allow for a more uniform frequency during the day, while under-performing early morning trips are adjusted or eliminated to make room for better evening travel options.
    • In addition, all weekend trips will begin serving the 34th St N transfer platform by the PSTA Facility.
  • St. Pete Downtown “Looper”: New routing and schedule will be implemented, as well as service using a combination of existing replica trolley vehicles and new PSTA BYD electric buses. Service will also become FARE FREE! More information can be found on the dedicated “Looper” page of the PSTA website.

When are the changes effective?

All service changes will take effect on Sunday, October 7, 2018, with Route 52LX trips beginning on Monday, October 8, 2018.

Where can I get more information?

On the PSTA website, or by calling 727-540-1900.
The link above will go straight to the dedicated service changes page.

Sarasota County Area Transit (SCAT)

Sarasota County, FL

What’s changing?

Several routes will be undergoing scheduling and/or routing changes to reflect ridership patterns & funding levels.

When are the changes effective?

A majority of the changes will take effect on Saturday, October 27, 2018.

Where can I get more information?

On the SCAT website, or by calling 941-861-5000.
The link above will go straight to the Maps & Schedules page. To access the PDF file listing the service changes, select the October 2018 Route Change Notice, or simply click here.


While I strive to maintain the highest level of accuracy, the information put together in this post originated from the transit agencies themselves. If you spot something that isn’t quite right, please let me AND the respective transit agency know so that we can convey the correct information. Thank you.

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Published by hartride2012tampa

Blogging about public transportation in Florida & beyond.

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