Summer Service Changes – PSTA, HART, LYNX, SunRail, Votran

This post was last updated on 06/19/2018
More information has been released regarding the upcoming service changes for LYNX, SunRail, & Votran

It’s that time again…service changes, service changes, service changes!

In this post, I will outline some of the key changes that are coming to the following transit agencies: Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA), Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART), Central Florida Regional Transportation Authority (d.b.a. LYNX), SunRail Commuter Rail, & Volusia County Transit (Votran).

Please note that with some of the agencies, further detailed information may not be available immediately as of this posting. Updates will be made when that information becomes available. This post is meant to present a general level overview of some of the key changes that will be enacted during the course of the next two months.

Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA)

PSTA is enacting several map/scheduling/time point changes on Sunday, June 17, 2018, which can be viewed on the PSTA website. The most significant changes however will take place the following day, Monday, June 18, 2018 – when Routes 100X & 300X will be officially re-launched as extended versions of their current selves. This will allow both routes to each serve a key area in the Tampa Bay region that wasn’t previously served by a PSTA express bus route.

  • Route 100X – St. Petersburg/Gateway/Tampa Express: Thanks to additional Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) Urban Corridor Project funding, the 100X will be extended southward to serve Downtown St. Petersburg via Interstate 275. All existing points (Gateway Mall, Britton Plaza in South Tampa, and Downtown Tampa) will continue to be served as they are today, with the limited trips to the Fidelity National (FIS) complex on Roosevelt Blvd & 16th Ct N being kept. The overall span of service within the existing route will largely remain the same, but adjustments to the schedule have been made to account for the Downtown St. Petersburg leg, thus creating an expansion to the overall span of service when the extension is accounted for.
    • The redesigned Route 100X will continue to operate Monday through Friday only, but will have a peak-hour frequency of roughly every 45 to 50 minutes, instead of the current 30 to 60 minute frequency. The midday trips have also been re-timed.
    • Buses will originate in Downtown St. Pete, at The Pier District (2nd Ave N, just east of the Sundial Shoppes where the Central Ave Trolley terminates), with the first trip of the morning departing at 4:42am.
    • From The Pier District, buses will circulate through the downtown area – serving all designated bus stops along the way – before entering the interstate system via I-375. Buses will then exit I-375 and enter I-275 north, then exiting at 54th Ave N.
    • From 54th Ave N, southbound/westbound buses travel along MLK St N while northbound/eastbound buses use 4th St N to enter/exit Gateway Mall.
    • From Gateway Mall eastward, the existing routing is used. The last trip from downtown St. Pete will be at 5:42pm.
  • Route 300X – Gateway/TPA Airport/Tampa Express (re-branded as the “Airport Express”): With the opening of the bus transfer hub at Tampa International Airport’s Rental Car Center, PSTA began formulating plans to alter Route 300X service while longer term plans for a direct express route from Clearwater Beach to Tampa continue to materialize. FDOT Urban Corridor funding will allow for the 300X to serve the TPA Airport Bus Hub on most trips while maintaining hourly peak service & the limited midday trips. Two trips (one AM eastbound & one PM westbound) will be kept as direct trips between the Ulmerton Rd Park-N-Ride Lot & Downtown Tampa via I-275. The overall span of service will remain largely the same – with a slightly earlier start time & somewhat later end time.
    • The redesigned Route 300X will continue to operate Monday through Friday only, with peak frequency changing to operate hourly versus the existing schedule. The midday trips have also been re-timed.
    • Buses will continue to originate at the Ulmerton Rd Park-N-Ride Lot on Ulmerton Rd, just east of Starkey Rd. The only major routing change is that most trips will now serve the TPA Airport Bus Hub, where customers from Pinellas can easily transfer to HART Routes 30, 32, 35, 60LX, & 275LX. Future plans also include Pasco Transit launching its own express route from central Pasco County to the bus hub.
    • The first eastbound trip of the morning will be at 6:10am, with the last trip being 6:20pm.
    • Only the 7:00AM Eastbound trip from the Ulmerton Rd Park-N-Ride Lot & the 4:55PM Westbound trip from HART’s Marion Transit Center will skip the airport. These trips will travel between Downtown Tampa and the Gateway area directly. These trips are being retained as direct trips to/from Downtown Tampa due to concerns from customers who use the existing 300X during the height of rush hour to get to/from work.
  • Other Changes: Minor map/scheduling/time point changes will be made to Routes 5, 7, 14, 15, 16, 20, 68, & the Dunedin/Palm Harbor Flex Connector (Route 813).

Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART)

HART will be enacting similar changes to some of its bus routes on Sunday, July 1, 2018, which can be viewed on the HART website (Select the Routes drop-down menu and scroll to the “HART Service Changes – Effective 71/18” section to view maps and schedules). The most significant changes will include the replacement of Route 51LX with Route 275LX, the addition of Route 48 – which restores service to key areas of northeastern Hillsborough that was lost when Route 57 was eliminated in October, 2017, and the elimination of the Downtown Tampa In-Towner Trolley Services due to ultra-low ridership.

  • Route 14 – Armenia Ave: Weekday service will be completely re-timed to reflect traffic patterns during the day. Buses will now depart roughly every 30 to 35 minutes. Weekend frequency will remain unchanged.
  • Route 48 – Temple Terrace: One of the biggest complaints by far that I’ve seen since the Mission MAX system restructuring was implemented back in October of 2017 was the elimination of Route 57 through Temple Terrace. The 57 was eliminated due to lower ridership & high upkeep costs, but many residents complained that they were left with no avenue to get to work or other destinations in Hillsborough without the route in place. While these residents clamored for HART to revive the 57, the route in its previous form was not going to return due to certain areas having ultra-low ridership levels. However, talks for a replacement service to serve key areas where residents were left with no service begin gaining traction during the late winter of 2017, when Hillsborough County officials began discussing the possibility of additional funding for the transit system. While a recurring funding arrangement failed to be reached, a one-time infusion was agreed upon to provide additional funds for service maintenance and expansion through FY 2018.
    • The routing for the 48 will be similar to how the 57 operated, with buses originating at the NetPark Transfer Center on 56th St & Harney Rd. Buses will leave the transfer center going south on 56th to Harney Rd, then 78th St, Temple Terrace Hwy, Davis Rd, Morris Bridge Rd, and then Fowler Ave. The previous segment of the 57 along 56th St and Fletcher Ave will not be served by the 48 due to the 6 already serving those areas. 42nd St & Skipper Rd just north of the USF Tampa campus will also not be served by the 48. Buses will instead continue down Fowler Ave to 30th St, where they will connect to the University Area Transit Center.
    • Service will run hourly, with weekday service starting at 5:30AM & running through 9:30PM. Weekend service will pretty much mirror the weekday schedule.
  • Routes 51LX/275LX: Due to the continuing decline in ridership of Route 51LX, which runs from Pasco County to Downtown Tampa via Temple Terrace, HART will be eliminating the route entirely & replacing East Pasco to Downtown Tampa Limited Express service with Route 275LX. The 275LX will operate all week long instead of just during weekday peak hours with hourly frequency, plus service to Tampa International Airport. The agency is re-allocating its funds through the FDOT Urban Corridor Project to fund the 275LX service.
    • With the 275LX, buses will originate at the Wiregrass Park-N-Ride Lot in Wesley Chapel, then travel down Bruce B. Downs Blvd to the Lowe’s Park-N-Ride Lot near I-75 in Tampa Palms. From there, buses will make a stop at the University Area Transit Center via Bruce B. Downs Blvd, then to Downtown Tampa & the Marion Transit Center via Fowler Ave & I-275. The segment along Bruce B. Downs Blvd & Fowler Ave will essentially restore basic service to areas along these corridors that were lost when Route 45 was re-aligned & Route 57 was eliminated back in October, 2017.
    • From the Marion Transit Center, buses will re-enter I-275 and terminate at the Tampa International Airport Bus Hub at the Rental Car Center, with departures synchronizing with Route 60LX so that customers traveling between the airport & downtown can enjoy a roughly 30 minute headway. Service on the 275LX itself will be hourly, with service starting up at approximately 5:10AM & running through about 10:00PM. Two trips will originate at the Marion Transit Center going to Tampa International Airport & the other two will originate at the University Area Transit Center going to Wiregrass. In the evening, trips will stagger to end at either transit center between 9:50PM & 11:00PM. Weekend schedules will basically mirror the weekday schedule.
  • In-Towner Services: Due to the continuing decline in ridership, Routes 96 & 97 will be eliminated. Customers wishing to traverse through Downtown Tampa can utilize Routes 1, 8, or 19, with Routes 1 & 19 serving western Downtown & the Riverfront, & Route 8 serving eastern Downtown & the Channelside District. Customers can also use the Downtowner free shuttle service provided by the Tampa-Downtown Partnership. Talks are currently underway as to the possibility of the partnership transferring operation of the shuttle service to HART.
  • HyperLINK Service: Despite the initial success of the HyperLINK ride-share type program, various factors – including whether there would be future commitments to run the service by private sector vendors – have prompted HART to end the service. Service in all zones will wind down on July 31, 2018.
  • Other Changes: Minor map/scheduling/time point changes will be made to Routes 1, 25LX, 31, 42, & 45.

Central Florida Regional Transportation Authority (d.b.a. LYNX) & SunRail Commuter Rail

In anticipation of the opening of Phase II of SunRail from Sand Lake Rd in southern Orlando to Poinciana, LYNX is making key changes to the bus network in Osceola County, along with changes to other routes in the overall network to improve system efficiency.

Xpress Route 208, which currently runs from the SunRail Sand Lake Rd Station to the Kissimmee Intermodal Station, will end services on Friday, July 27, 2018. SunRail trains begin operating between the Sand Lake Rd & Poinciana Stations the following Monday, July 30, 2018.

Also in anticipation for the SunRail extension, a new route will be created in Osceola County – Route 155 – which will serve The Loop, Osceola Parkway, Tupperware SunRail Station and Buena Ventura Lakes.

You may view all of the upcoming changes – most of which will become effective on Sunday, July 15, 2018 – on the LYNX website. Further updates will be made when schedules for each individual route become available.

The new SunRail schedule is now available on the SunRail website by selecting the banner on the homepage. A PDF file will then open with the new schedule.

Volusia County Transit (Votran)

Votran has an odd tendency to not post service changes in a very timely manner. However this time, they’ve posted a week ahead regarding the launch of Route 44 in the New Smyrna Beach area. This route will connect the Julia St & Sams Ave transfer point in downtown NSB to the WalMart supercenter & Shoppes at Coronado complexes on the northwest corner of SR 44 & I-95. Buses will then travel eastward to the beachside, to Indian River Village, before heading back to the downtown NSB transfer point. Service begins on Monday, June 25, 2018 and will operate on a flag-stop system until permanent stops are constructed.

Further updates will be made when the new schedule & map are posted.


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MCAT & SCAT Winter 2018 Service Changes

It’s that time again, time to enact service changes across multiple transit districts. In this post, I will be discussing the various service changes going into effect for Manatee County Area Transit & Sarasota County Area Transit.


Manatee County Area Transit (MCAT)

MCAT enacted the following changes on Saturday, February 3, 2018

Select the route number to view the new schedule.
I will post the Route 99 schedule link once SCAT has enacted its changes.

  • Route 1Overall span of service will reduce to reflect ridership patterns. The first northbound trip from Palmetto to Ellenton, leaving the Palmetto WalMart at 5:03am was eliminated.
  • Route 2: The northbound trip starting at Manatee County Public Works at 5:38 a.m. via the Red Barn Flea Market was eliminated. Start of service will now be the first southbound trip to DeSoto Station at 5:50am.
  • Route 4: The first westbound trip from the Downtown Bradenton Station, departing at 5:15am for Blake Hospital, was eliminated.
  • Route 6: A new late night westbound trip was added, departing at 8:05am from DeSoto Station. This trip will not serve Blake Hospital and will end at 75th St W.
  • Route 13: The current southbound trip at 6:20 p.m. will end at Palmetto Walmart/US 301 at 6:47p.m. This trip will no longer continue to Palmetto Station.
  • Sunday/Holiday Beach Express Trolley: Westbound service will now begin at 9:15am from the Downtown Bradenton Station instead of 9:00am from the State Rd 64 WalMart.
  • Joint MCAT/SCAT Route 99: Evening service span will be adjusted to reflect ridership patterns. Some trips may leave earlier or later than they currently do, and other trips may be eliminated due to lower ridership.
    • MCAT added a southbound trip from the DeSoto Station, departing at 8:02pm, to travel to Downtown Sarasota. This trip will skip stops serving State College of Florida and depart the Downtown Sarasota Transfer Center at 8:40pm, terminating at SRQ Airport.
    • SCAT will eliminate the 10:00pm run between SRQ Airport and Downtown Sarasota.

View the schedule change flyer.

Sarasota County Area Transit (SCAT)

SCAT will enact the following changes on Saturday, February 10, 2018.

Schedules are not yet available.

  • Route 1: The first westbound trip will depart Cattlemen station 5 minutes earlier, at 5:44am, to arrive at the Downtown Sarasota Transfer Center at 6:05am. This change is being made to provide better connectivity to Route 18.
  • Route 1A: Saturday service will be eliminated. Service will only operate Monday through Friday.
  • Route 3: Overall span of service will be reduced to reflect ridership patterns.
  • Route 9: Saturday service will be eliminated. Service will only operate Monday through Friday. Combined Route 17/13 will take over for Saturday service. Weekday schedule adjustments will be made to help keep buses running on time.
    • The southern terminus will change to include the North Port Suncoast Technical College/NP Library on North Cranberry Boulevard as the end of the line. SCAT will continue to serve the North Port Memorial Hospital Emergency Room in one direction.
  • Route 11: Segment between Downtown Sarasota & Westfield Siesta Key (formerly Southgate) will be eliminated. Alternative services will be provided by Routes 14 & 17. This change also applies for the Sunday variant.
    • Sunday variant will have a reduction in overall span of service.
  • Route 14: Service will be extended to Downtown Sarasota on all service days, including the Sunday variant.
  • Route 15: Buses will no longer perform the loop via US 41 & Proctor Rd and will instead terminate at the Sarasota Pavillion Transfer Center. Alternative service along US 41 will be provided by Route 17 on weekdays and Route 17/13 on weekends. Alternative service on Swift Rd will be provided by Route 5.
    • Sunday variant will have a reduction in overall span of service.
  • Route 16: Two AM trips & two PM trips will be added between Venice & Englewood.
  • Route 17: Saturday service will be eliminated. Service will only operate Monday through Friday. Combined Route 17/13 will take over for Saturday service.
  • Route 26 (Seasonal): Seasonal service began in December, 2017.
  • Route 28: Saturday service will be eliminated. Service will only operate Monday through Friday.
  • Route 30: Overall span of service will be reduced to reflect ridership patterns.
  • Route 33 (Seasonal): Seasonal service began in December, 2017.
  • Joint MCAT/SCAT Route 99: Evening service span will be adjusted to reflect ridership patterns. Some trips may leave earlier or later than they currently do, and other trips may be eliminated due to lower ridership.
    • MCAT added a southbound trip from the DeSoto Station, departing at 8:02pm, to travel to Downtown Sarasota. This trip will skip stops serving State College of Florida and depart the Downtown Sarasota Transfer Center at 8:40pm, terminating at SRQ Airport.
    • SCAT will eliminate the 10:00pm run between SRQ Airport and Downtown Sarasota.
  • Route 17/13: Hourly service will commence on Saturdays and will mirror the Sunday schedule. The route will also be extended to Toledo Blade Blvd and Cranberry Blvd.

View the schedule change flyer.


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HART, PSTA, Votran, & Miami-Dade Winter 2018 Service Changes

Post updated on 2/13/18.
Received updated info from HART regarding the TPA Airport Shuttle.

It’s that time again, time to enact service changes across multiple transit districts. In this post, I will be discussing the various service changes going into effect for Hillsborough Area Regional Transit, the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority, Volusia County Transit, & Miami-Dade Transit.


Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART)

HART will be enacting the following service changes on Sunday, February 25, 2018:

Schedules are available by visiting the Maps & Schedules page, then selecting the route drop-down menu, then scrolling down to the service changes section at the bottom.

  • Route 6: Weekday frequency will increase to every 15 minutes during the day.
  • Routes 15 & 32: Westbound buses will begin serving the on-property bus stop at International Plaza. Scheduling changes will be made in accordance to this change.
  • Route 19: Bi-directional service to Tampa General Hospital will be restored & thus the 19A shuttle will end. Scheduling changes will be made in accordance to this change.
  • Route 20X: Service will be extended to MacDill/South Tampa. Scheduling & map changes will be made in accordance to this change.
  • Route 24LX: Service will be restored to 5 trips during the AM & 5 trips during the PM. While extra buses were already running due to overcrowding, formal scheduling changes were able to be made at last.
  • Route 33: Minor weekend scheduling adjustments will be made.
  • Route 34: Weekday frequency will increase to every 15 minutes during the day & to every 30 minutes on weekends.
  • Route 36: Scheduling changes will be made to adjust departure & running times on weekends. This is in connection to the changes for Route 19, since the two interline on weekends.
  • Route 35: New route will be introduced to replace the 60LX between Tampa International Airport & Northwest Transfer Center.
  • Route 46: Weekday frequency will increase to every 15 minutes during the day. Routing will also change to keep buses on Brandon Blvd (SR 60).
  • Route 60LX: Buses will no longer travel to Northwest Transfer Center. Buses will terminate at the Tampa International Airport Hub.
  • HART Flex Brandon: Routing adjustments will be made to have vans travel on Parsons Ave instead of Vonderburg Dr.
  • Tampa International Airport Shuttle%: Service will end with the opening of the SkyConnect Automated People Mover between the Tampa International Airport Main Terminal & the airport’s Consolidated Rental Car (CONRAC) Facility.
  • In addition, scheduling changes are slated for Routes 15, 16, 39, 51LX, & The TECOline Streetcar.

% Change will take place on Wednesday, February 14, 2018 or Thursday, February 15, 2018, but is subject to changeHART has clarified that the shuttle will continue until the rest of the service changes take effect. After further discussion between HART & TPA Airport officials, HART will end the shuttle after 2/14/18. Please see this flyer for details.

View the schedule change flyer (does not include the TPA Airport Shuttle).

Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA)

PSTA will be enacting the following service changes on Sunday, February 18, 2018:

Select the route number to view the new schedule.

  • Route 4: Departure and running times will be changed, with some trips departing earlier or later than they currently do. Overall span of service will be adjusted accordingly to reflect ridership patterns – resulting in some early morning or later evening trips being adjusted or eliminated.
  • Route 11: Buses will begin serving Gandy Blvd, Gateway Business Park, 28th St N, and the PSTA 34th St Transfer Center on weekends. Service to the Carillon Business Park will be discontinued to improve efficiency along the route. Departure and running times, and overall span of service will be adjusted accordingly.
  • Route 14: Departure and running times will be changed, with some trips departing earlier or later than they currently do. Overall span of service will remain largely unchanged.
  • Route 18: 10:40pm weeknight trip will terminate at Seminole City Center instead of Tyrone Square Mall.
  • Route 23: An updated schedule timetable has been produced. There does not appear to be any departure or running time changes, time point changes, or changes in the overall span of service.
  • Route 38: An updated schedule timetable and map have been produced. There does not appear to be any departure or running time changes, time point changes, or changes in the overall span of service.
  • Route 58: Overall span of service has been increased to include three full trips in each direction. The last westbound buses to Seminole City Center will depart Gateway Mall at 6:30pm, 7:30pm, & 8:10pm. The last eastbound buses to Gateway Mall will depart Seminole City Center at 7:20pm & 8:20pm. The 6:40pm trip will now run to Gateway Mall, instead of terminating at 49th St N as it currently does.
  • Route 59: Weekday schedule has been adjusted to match Route 4 at the PSTA 34th St Transfer Center. Midday departures will now have 15 minute headways, allowing for more frequent service throughout the day.
  • Route 74: Weekday frequency will be restored to 20 minute headways between 6:00am & 5:00pm, allowing for more frequent service. When the route was split up in 2016, weekday frequency was reduced to every 25 minutes.
  • Route 79: An updated schedule timetable has been produced, with minor changes in departure & running times.
  • Route 444: Due to ultra-low ridership, this route will be eliminated outright. Customers will have access to DART (Paratransit) & Direct Connect (Link) services.
  • Beachside Trolley Services: The PSTA Suncoast Beach Trolley, as well as both Jolley Trolley services (Clearwater Beach & Clearwater Coastal) will all begin to serve the newly constructed Clearwater Beach Transit Center on the Clearwater Memorial Causeway – just east of the roundabout. Some scheduling & map changes have been made to the SBT, including the addition of an intermittent Downtown Clearwater extension that will be activated during Spring Break season. Updates will be made accordingly to the Jolley Trolley schedules as needed.

Visit the PSTA Website

Volusia County Transit (Votran)

Votran enacted the following service changes on January 29, 2018

Schedules are not yet available.

  • Routes 7 & 11: Monday through Saturday frequency was increased to every 30 minutes from hourly service. Overall span of service was adjusted accordingly.
  • In accordance to the above changes, bus assignment bays at the Downtown Daytona Beach Transfer Plaza were changed.
    • Gate N2: Route 11
    • Gate N6: Route 7
    • Gate S1: Route 5 (buses previously boarded at Gate N2)
    • Gate S2: Route 8 (buses previously boarded at Gate N6)

Visit the Votran Website

Miami-Dade Transit (M-DT)

M-DT will enact the following service changes on Sunday, March 11, 2018

Schedules are not yet available.

  • Routes 35 & 70: Routes will be merged to help streamline service along the respective service corridor. Overall span of service and schedules will be adjusted in accordance to these changes.
    • Route 35 will become the new designation for the combined routing.
    • The 35A branch will be created to cover the current Route 70 alignment between Naranja and Florida City. This branch line will operate on weekdays only.
    • Some areas will lose transit service as a result of the changes. Please see the flyer for details.
  • Routes 7, 71, 137, & 338: Buses will travel on NW 17th St instead of NW 14th St, between Dolphin Mall & NW 107th Ave. Please see the flyer for details.
  • Routes 38 & 120: Routing & scheduling changes will be made.
  • In addition, scheduling changes are slated for Routes 3, 7, 8, 11, 24, 27, 31, 77, 95 Express Golden Glades, 115, 137, 183, 207/208, & 210.

Visit the M-DT Website


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HART & HRT Service Changes – Effective 10/08/17

Sunday, October 8, 2017 is just around the corner, and there is much to talk about in this post. In addition to Hillsborough Area Regional Transit’s systemwide restructuring – called Mission MAX – Hampton Roads Transit is also enacting its own changes on the same day. HRT is also undergoing its own Transit Development Plan update and is considering undergoing a similar system restructuring to that of HART. I’ll delve more into HRT in a few moments, but first – let’s do one final rundown of the changes that we’re expecting to see on the HART system.


HART System Changes (Mission MAX)

HART has created a side-by-side comparison on which routes are changing, so that you’ll be able to easily see how each route operates now, versus after the restructuring takes effect. You can also view the summary list of the changes, an interactive system map – powered by Remix, and the new static system map. If you go to the Maps & Schedules Page on the HART website, you’ll be able to scroll all the way to the bottom of the routes drop-down menu to see the new schedules. Additionally, you can begin planning out how your new commute will shape up by going to Google Maps and using their transit trip planner. I have step-by-step instructions on how to use Google Maps’ transit trip planner, but you will want to do a couple of things before you begin mapping out your trip.

Does everything that I just wrote sound confusing? If so, let me break things down a bit:

  • A summary list of the changes is available on the HART website. This list goes through how each route is changing.
  • To view the new schedules for each individual HART route, simply go to the Maps & Schedules Page on the HART website, and select the routes drop-down menu on the left. Once you’ve opened up the drop-down menu, scroll all the way down to where you see “HART Service Changes, Effective: 10/8/17 – Coming Soon”. Beneath that divider, you will be able to view the new schedules.
  • You can view a side-by-side comparison of how each HART route looks like today, versus how they will look like after the restructuring takes effect. This tool is very helpful in determining how your commute will be impacted.
  • The new static system map will show how the entire HART system will look once the changes are in place.
  • You can also view an interactive system map that shows where each route travels to and from, as well as stop placement. The map is powered by Remix, which is a very powerful tool for transit agencies to use for planning – whether it be a large scale restructuring like what HART is doing, or a routine round of service changes. I’ve actually used the interactive mapping features when they were in demo mode (and open for general public use), and I can definitely see why many transit agencies like to use Remix as a tool for their transit system planning needs.
  • Lastly, you can go over to Google Maps and use their transit planning feature to view how your commute will shape up once the restructuring takes effect.
    • Simply click the blue diamond “directions” button on the upper left-hand corner of the page. Then, type the address of where you’re coming from and the address of where you’re going to.
    • Once your itinerary is mapped out, select the “train” icon at the top to launch the transit option.
    • Under the transit option, select the drop-down menu that reads “Leave Now”, and change it to “Depart at” or “Arrive by”, then change the date field to 10/8/17 or a date thereafter, and your desired arrival or departure time.
    • Now you can see which route options are available to you once the restructuring takes effect. You customize your commute further by using the “Schedule Explorer” tool on the bottom left if you wish.

If you have further questions about HART’s Mission MAX restructuring, please do not hesitate to reach out to them by calling (813)-254-4278, visiting the HART website, or reaching out to them via Social Media.


HRT System Changes

Now, let’s take a look at what HRT has in store for October 8, 2017. These changes are not as radical as Mission MAX, but as I mentioned earlier, HRT is working on its own TDP update, which calls for a systemwide examination of its services.


Changes taking effect in the Southside (Norfolk, Portsmouth, Chesapeake, & Virginia Beach)

  • Route 2: The current detour on Route 2 will become permanent. No service will be provided to Naval Station Norfolk. The route will terminate at the NEX Mall. Schedule adjustments will be made.
  • Route 3: Minor schedule adjustments to improve adherence.
  • Route 21: The current detour on Route 21 will become permanent. No service will be provided to Naval Station Norfolk after 6:30 pm Monday through Friday. No service will be provided on weekends. The route will terminate at the NEX Mall. Schedule adjustments will be made.
  • Route 25: The route will be modified to provide service to Sentara Princess Anne Medical Complex. Service will be discontinued to the Municipal Center via Route 25. Service to the Municipal Center will be provided by Route 33.

  • Route 33: Minor schedule adjustments to improve adherence.

Changes taking effect in the Northside (Newport News & Hampton)

  • No changes are planned for this service change cycle.

Changes taking effect on the Express Routes

  • Route 919: All evening trips revised due to closure of Bainbridge Avenue and Franklin Street.
  • Route 922: The following morning trips will be discontinued due to low ridership:
    • 5:15 AM
    • 6:45 AM
    • All evening trips revised due to closure of Bainbridge Avenue and Franklin Street.

  • Route 960: The route will be revised to service Newtown Station. Service will be discontinued to Silverleaf Commuter Station. Route 960 will operate between Downtown Norfolk Transit Center and Arctic Avenue/19th Street with a stop at Newtown Station.

  • Route 965: All evening trips revised due to closure of Bainbridge Avenue and Franklin Street.


HRT Fare Changes

In 2014, HRT approved a two-phased systemwide fare increase, with the first phase taking effect October, 2014. With this second phase, the one-way base fare for local routes will be brought from $1.75 to $2.00, which is the same level that HART charges for a one-way local & limited express fare. The fare increase was conducted as a two-phased approach so that customers would not be negatively impacted by a single slew of fare increases all at once.

The new fares will take effect on Sunday, October 1, 2017

For a rundown of the new fares and frequently asked questions, please visit the HRT website.


HRT Transit Development Plan (TDP)

HRT is currently working on completing its TDP and is asking for public input. Two meetings will be held., one tonight and the other on Saturday, September 23, 2017. This TDP update calls for a systemwide examination of current services and recommends eliminating lower ridership routes and segments to pave the way for new services to higher demand areas. To view the recommendations and to provide comment, please visit the HRT website.


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Legalese | Disclosures

HART Network Restructuring – Part 3

With the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART) Board of Directors approving the massive network restructuring on August 7, 2017, the changes listed in this post will become effective on October 8, 2017. Over the next two months, I will be updating the various pages that I have published on the HART system to reflect the new network. Such changes will include a new route list, bus fleet roster, and transfer center information.


HART Public Hearing Video

If you weren’t able to attend the July 26, 2017 public hearing, you can watch it in its entirety below:


HART Board Meeting Video

I will have a link to the HART August 7, 2017 board meeting available here as soon as it is posted.


A breakdown of the Routes

Virtually every HART bus route was put up for review as to whether anything should be changed. While a few routes were spared from dramatic reductions, modifications, or an out-right elimination, many others aren’t faring as well – especially routes that serve lower ridership corridors.

The following links reflect the FINAL structure of the HART network as approved on August 7, 2017.

Overview of Changes

System Map Reflecting Changes

Interactive Map (times listed are for planning purposes only. Schedules will be laid out over the next two months and should be available by the first week of October).

Further info can be found on the HART System Restructuring/Transit Development Plan page.

  • Route 1
    • Route will no longer serve the vicinity north of Fletcher Ave. Buses will instead travel along Fletcher Ave (pre-MetroRapid alignment).
    • University North service would be taken over by Route 42 and HyperLINK service.
    • Weekday frequency will increase to 15 minute headways.
    • Further changes to the routing will be made in respects to Downtown Tampa circulation (see the “Downtown Tampa Circulation” section).
  • Route 2
    • Route 2 will be eliminated and replaced with optimized MetroRapid service.
    • Many stops will be consolidated with existing MetroRapid stops, while some stops become new MetroRapid stops.
  • Route 4
    • Route 4 will be eliminated entirely with no replacement service due to ultra low ridership.
    • Alternatives available include:
      • Route 360LX for MacDill AFB/South Interbay
      • HART Flex for Palma Ceia
      • Routes 14 & 19 for Hyde Park
      • HART Flex South Tampa will eventually expand to portions of South Tampa currently served by Route 4, but it is unclear as to when this will be done.
  • Route 5
    • Service from USF will be removed, with buses running along Fowler Ave and 30th St to the University Area Transit Center.
    • The USF Bull Runner Shuttle & HyperLINK would provide service into the USF Tampa Campus.
  • Route 6
    • Service from USF will be removed, with buses running along 56th St and Fletcher Ave to the University Area Transit Center.
    • The USF Bull Runner Shuttle & HyperLINK would provide service into the USF Tampa Campus.
  • Route 7
    • Service north of the HCC loop to Citrus Park will be eliminated entirely.
    • West Tampa Transfer Center will close permanently.
    • West Tampa segment will be revised to serve the North Blvd/Columbus Dr portion of current Route 14.
    • Route 11 will eventually replace the Main St segment.
  • Route 8
    • The original restructuring plan called for the removal of the loop in Progress Village, as well as other possible modifications. The loop will be removed due to safety concerns, but all other proposals have been removed.
    • Further changes to the routing will be made in respects to Downtown Tampa circulation (see the “Downtown Tampa Circulation” section).
  • Route 9
    • Route will be merged with Route 18.
    • The portion north of Hillsborough Ave will be eliminated and replaced with the following services:
      • East Tampa will continue to have access to Route 9 along 14th/15th Streets, Route 12 along 22nd St, and Route 5 along 34th St.
      • Sulphur Springs will continue to have access to the revised 9 service along Rowlett Park Blvd, Riverhills Dr, and 30th St. Customers will also be able to access to revised Route 16 along Waters Ave, which will replace a portion of Route 9 through this vicinity.
      • Route 42 will replace the segment of Route 9 between Yukon Transfer Center and University Area Transit Center.
  • Route 10
    • Much of Route 10 will be eliminated and replaced by nearby Route 11 (Cypress St corridor has ultra low ridership).
    • Portions of Route 10 will be taken over by South Tampa Flex.
  • Route 11%
    • New Route 11 will provide replacement service for those residing in West Tampa along Main St.
    • Due to construction along Main St, this route will not be implemented right away. See the notes at the bottom of this section.
  • Route 12%
    • Weekday frequency will increase to 15 minute headways.
  • Route 14
    • Portion south of MLK Blvd will change so that buses remain on Howard Ave/Armenia Ave for the entire length of the route, instead of diverting to Downtown via North Blvd.
    • North Blvd service south of Columbus Dr will be taken over by Routes 7 & 11.
    • Route 1 will provide alternate service for the portion of North Blvd that will be left without transit service.
    • Weekday frequency on the 14 will increase to 30 minute headways and Sunday hourly service will be added.
  • Route 15
    • Orient Rd segment will be removed & the Orient Rd Jail will no longer be served.
  • Route 16
    • Route will no longer serve the Yukon Transfer Center and will remain on Waters Ave, with the eastern terminus looping via 17th St, Sitka St, & Rowlett Park Dr, providing a connection to Routes 9 & 12.
    • Customers wishing to connect to the Yukon Transfer Center can transfer to Route 45 along Waters Ave.
  • Route 17
    • New Route 17 hourly service will take over the Manhattan Ave/Port Tampa portion of Route 19.
  • Route 18
    • Route 18 will be merged with Route 9 and will retain the portion north of Hillsborough Ave.
    • Customers residing south of Hillsborough Ave can access Routes 5 & 12 for alternate service.
  • Route 19
    • Route will be split at Britton Plaza, with the new Route 17 taking over the Manhattan Ave portion. The WestShore Blvd portion will be eliminated entirely due to lower ridership.
    • Routing through Hyde Park will remain mostly intact. However, only Northbound trips will serve Tampa General Hospital.
    • Weekday 30-minute frequency will expand to 10:00pm.
    • Saturday frequency will eventually increase to 30 minute headways, but it is unclear as to when this will occur.
    • Further changes to the routing will be made in respects to Downtown Tampa circulation (see the “Downtown Tampa Circulation” section).
  • Route 20X
    • No changes are being proposed for Route 20X, but running times may change.
  • Route 21LX
  • Route 22X
    • Route 22X will be eliminated and replaced by Route 60LX service. Route 46 would provide service between the Dover Park-N-Ride lot & Westfield Brandon, where customers can connect to the 60LX or 360LX to Downtown.
  • Route 24X
    • Route would be restructured to limited express operation, with new Downtown Tampa stops.
  • Route 25LX
    • Route would be modified with new Downtown Tampa stops.
  • Route 27LX
    • Route 28X will be eliminated entirely with no replacement service due to ultra low ridership.
    • Alternatives available include:
      • Routes 60LX & 360LX will provide alternating Monday through Saturday connections between Downtown Tampa & Brandon. Revised Routes 24LX & 25LX will also have Downtown connections during peak times.
      • Local connections to Westfield Brandon are provided via Routes 8, 31, 37, & 46.
  • Route 28X
    • Route 28X will be eliminated entirely with no replacement service due to ultra low ridership.
    • Customers can utilize TBARTA’s Vanpool Service by visiting the TBARTA Commuter Services website or calling 1-800-998-RIDE.
    • The Burnett Park Lot will become a Vanpool pickup/drop off location and will continue to serve Megabus trips. Other Park-N-Ride lots along the route will close.
  • Route 30
    • Western terminus will be moved to Tampa International Airport, with Route 60LX taking over the Town-N-Country portion.
  • Route 31
    • The original restructuring plan called for the 31 to be converted to an all-day limited express service, as well as other possible modifications. These modifications have been removed entirely due to customer concerns.
  • Route 32&
    • Segment east of NetPark Transfer Center will be taken over by Route 38.
    • Western terminus will extend to Tampa International Airport via Dale Mabry Hwy and International Plaza/Columbus Dr.
    • West Tampa Transfer Center will close permanently.
  • Route 33
    • Route will basically revert to its late 90s routing (before service to Hidden River was eliminated to take over the North Lakeview section of Route 36 during the system restructuring in the early 2000s) to replace the Hidden River section of MetroRapid.
    • University North service would be taken over by Route 42 and HyperLINK service.

      Route 33 as it was during the late 90s
  • Route 34%
    • No immediate changes will be made, but weekday frequency will eventually increase to 15 headways. See the note at the bottom of this section.
  • Route 36
    • Route will be modified to serve Dale Mabry Hwy between Tampa Bay Blvd and Britton Plaza.
    • Service south of Britton Plaza will be taken over by Route 360LX.
    • Buses will loop around the HCC Dale Mabry Campus by travelling Tampa Bay Blvd, Lois Ave, & MLK Blvd. Buses will then proceed northward on Himes Ave and follow the existing alignment to the Fletcher Ave loop.
    • Further changes may be made down the road to re-align the segment between Hillsborough Ave & Busch Blvd to Dale Mabry Hwy instead of Himes Ave.
    • West Tampa Transfer Center will close permanently.
  • Route 37
    • Service to Brandon Regional Hospital will be discontinued, with Route 46 and HyperLINK providing alternate service.
  • Route 38
    • New Route 38 will replace the hourly eastern segment of Route 32.
  • Route 39
    • Service to NetPark will be discontinued, with buses looping at Sligh Ave, 50th St, & Puritan Rd.
    • Yukon Transfer Center will no longer be served.
  • Route 41
    • Route 41 will be eliminated entirely with no replacement due to ultra low ridership.
  • Route 42
    • New Route 42 will serve heavier ridership areas in University North and University West that will suffer loses from the removal of Routes 1, 9, 18, & 33.
  • Route 45
    • Route will be modified as follows:
      • Service south of Waters Ave will remain largely unchanged, with the exception of service on Himes Ave being moved to Dale Mabry Hwy.
      • West Tampa Transfer Center will close permanently.
      • Service north of Waters Ave will replace Route 16 service to Yukon Transfer Center.
      • Service to University Mall will be offered via Route 12.
  • Route 46$$
    • Route will only serve areas in Brandon and Dover. The Causeway Blvd/Downtown segment will be eliminated entirely due to limited ridership and various expansion constraints.
  • Route 47LX
    • Route 47LX will be eliminated entirely with no replacement due to limited ridership.
    • Alternatives available include:
      • Route 31 local service for South County.
      • Routes 24X, 60LX, & 360LX for limited express connections to Downtown.
  • Route 51X
    • Segment along Fowler Ave and 56th St will be added to serve Temple Terrace City Hall.
  • Route 53LX$$$
    • Route 53LX will be eliminated entirely with no replacement due to limited ridership and various expansion constraints.
  • Route 57
    • Route will be eliminated with no replacement service due to low productivity and ridership.
    • Alternatives available include:
      • Route 6 for direct connections between NetPark Transfer Center and the University Area Transit Center.
      • HyperLINK for University North.
      • USF Bull Runner & HyperLINK for the USF Tampa Campus.
  • Route 60LX
    • Monday through Saturday all-day limited express service between Westfield Brandon Mall & Northwest Transfer Center via Downtown Tampa & Tampa International Airport, with buses operating every hour, replacing Route 30 through Town-N-Country & 61LX.
    • Departures from Westfield Brandon will be coordinated with Route 360LX to provide 30-minute headways between Brandon & Downtown.
    • Sunday service will operate hourly in Town-N-Country only (between Northwest Transfer Center & Tampa International Airport). There will be no Downtown or Brandon service.
  • Route 61LX
    • Route will be eliminated and replaced with Route 60LX service. Existing Park-N-Ride lots in Citrus Park & Carrollwood will become vanpool pickup/drop off locations.
  • Route 96 In-Towner^
    • No immediate changes will be made.
  • Route 97 In-Towner^
    • No immediate changes will be made.
  • Route 200X$
    • Route 200X will be eliminated entirely with no replacement service due to ultra low ridership.
    • Customers can utilize TBARTA’s Vanpool Service by visiting the TBARTA Commuter Services website or calling 1-800-998-RIDE.
  • Route 275LX%
    • New Monday through Friday all-day hourly limited express service will run between Tampa International Airport & the University Area Transit Center via Downtown Tampa/Marion Transit Center.
  • Route 360LX
    • Monday through Saturday all-day limited express service between Westfield Brandon Mall & MacDill AFB via Downtown Tampa, with buses operating every hour, replacing Route 22X.
    • Departures from Westfield Brandon will be coordinated with Route 60LX to provide 30-minute headways between Brandon & Downtown.
    • Sunday service will operate hourly in South Tampa only. There will be no Downtown or Brandon service.
  • MetroRapid North-South
    • MetroRapid North-South will absorb Route 2.
    • Existing stops will be kept, with some stops added on from Route 2.
    • Weekday frequency will increase to 12 minute headways during the day with 15-30 minute evening service.
    • Weekend service will be added with 30 minute headways.
  • HART Flex Brandon
    • Zone will be eliminated in favor of HyperLINK service.
  • HART Flex Northdale
    • No immediate changes will be made.
  • HART Flex South County
    • No immediate changes will be made.
  • HART Flex South Tampa
    • Northern boundary will extend to Cypress St to cover ground lost from Route 10. The fixed routing segment will also change.
    • Unclear if WestShore Plaza connection will be retained.
    • Possible expansion is being considered for areas south of Britton Plaza.
  • HART Flex Town-N-Country
    • No immediate changes will be made.
    • Zone will eventually be eliminated in favor of HyperLINK service.

Notes:

      • + Route 51X is undergoing changes that are unrelated to the service restructuring. Further changes may be made down the road to improve efficiency.
      • % Changes are being postponed until FY19.
      • ^ In-Towner Service is slated for elimination sometime in FY19, but may be retained longer due to Governor Scott vetoing funds that would have gone to starting up the Downtown Tampa HyperLINK zone. Alternative funding sources are being explored for the zone.
      • & It is currently unclear how expanded airport service will be structured. HART may have buses loop around the terminal as it currently does with Route 30. Sometime in late 2018, the airport stop will move from the main terminal complex to the new Rental Car Center, where buses will be able to load and unload airport customers, who will be able to connect with the new SkyConnect train to the main terminal.
      • $ Route 200X will eventually be replaced by PSTA’s planned replacement service from Clearwater, but this service is not expected to be up and running until sometime between 2020 and 2024. Contracted service may fill the gap for the interim, but HART currently does not have the resources to fulfill this.
      • $$ Depending on how additional county money is allocated, Route 46 may be retained largely as-is through FY19.
      • $$$ Route 53LX will be restored when additional funding becomes available.
      • * Tampa Bay Express has been re-branded by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) as “Tampa Bay Next”, but the controversial interstate toll lane elements remain as a key element to the plan, which is not sitting well with many in the community.

Permanent Closure of West Tampa Transfer Center

The West Tampa Transfer Center will permanently close as part of the system restructuring.

With the demise of the Tampa Bay Center Mall in the early 2000s, HART began exploring sites for a replacement transfer facility in the West Tampa region. While several sites were originally evaluated, the current location along Himes Ave was eventually chosen.

I’ve personally have never been a fan of the West Tampa Transfer Center. I strongly believe that HART management at the time chose the “cheap way out” in building what could have been a more lucrative, long-term transit hub for the area. The current location of the WTTC is extremely inefficient during events at Raymond James Stadium because the facility sits right across the street from the stadium and must close due to traffic and security limitations. This operation forces buses to load and unload customers along MacDill Ave by MLK Blvd.

Closing the WTTC permanently will allow customers in the area to make street-side transfers while allowing buses to run more efficiently throughout the day.


Downtown Tampa Circulation

#1522 running down Morgan St in downtown Tampa.

As the HART system restructuring progresses, all local bus routes that currently service the Marion St Transitway will be moved off the Transitway to Morgan St, with Route 1 – which doesn’t currently serve the Transitway – making a loop around Tampa St and Florida Ave, but continuing to serve the Marion Transit Center. HART is taking a phased approach to this portion of the restructuring, but it is unclear when each of the movements will occur (some – like Routes 1 and 19 – will occur in October, 2017, but others will occur later).

At some point between 2018 and 2021, HART plans to launch an autonomous shuttle along the Transitway to shuttle customers between the south end of the Transitway and Marion Transit Center. Longer term plans have HART restructuring the Transitway to serve the regional express buses mentioned in the controversial Tampa Bay Express* plan.

There was previously discussion regarding the building of light rail along the Transitway, but from what I’m hearing, that plan has been deemed unfeasible due to limitations brought upon the current Downtown Tampa street grid. If the TECOline Streetcar were to be extended northward, it is likely it will be done so via the Franklin St Mall portion between Whiting St and Kennedy Blvd.

The In-Towner Trolley service will be retained for the meantime (see note at the bottom of this section), but will eventually face elimination in 2019 or 2020, as the current fleet of trolleybuses are approaching the end of their useful lives. Funding is currently being explored for a Downtown Tampa HyperLINK zone and the Tampa Downtown Partnership “Downtowner” Shuttle Service would provide additional alternative circulation in the Downtown area.


HART Resources

For complete information regarding the HART system restructuring, please visit the HART website, where they have a dedicated page with materials for you to look at. The HART Board of Directors will vote on the final restructuring plan at the August 7, 2017 meeting.


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Legalese | Disclosures

HART Network Restructuring – Part 2

I was originally going to publish this post sooner, but the intricacies of pulling off such a dramatic bus network restructuring, as well as concerns from the riding public, forced me to postpone this post until after the July 26, 2017 public hearing.

Throughout the past few months, Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART) has been reaching out to as many customers as possible about the planned restructuring and gaining valuable feedback on what customers are needing. While a majority of customers want more frequent and direct bus service to the places that matter to them, others are worried that their bus route could be eliminated altogether.

In my last post, I went through an overview as to why HART is proposing such a restructuring of their bus network. While it is completely understandable that with limited funds, HART can only do so much, it really angers me that many of our elected officials will not allocate additional resources to fund the bus system. Furthermore, it angers me when some of the same elected officials who don’t want to put another dime towards improving bus service think that it’s terrific to allow the state to spend billions of dollars on the controversial Tampa Bay Express* interstate toll lanes, touting the lanes as “the only way” to significantly improve the region’s transit network.


HART Public Hearing Video

If you weren’t able to attend the July 26, 2017 public hearing, you can watch it in its entirety below:


A breakdown of the Routes

Virtually every HART bus route was put up for review as to whether anything should be changed. While a few routes were spared from dramatic reductions, modifications, or an out-right elimination, many others aren’t faring as well – especially routes that serve lower ridership corridors.

View the latest system restructuring map with additional revisions as of July 26, 2017. Further revisions we’re made on July 31, 2017.

Black = No Changes

Green = Frequency Improvements

Blue = Routing Changes

Dark Blue = Routing Changes with Frequency Improvements

Sky Blue: New Route

Magenta = New Route replacing Existing Service

Gold = Merging/Splitting

Orange = Elimination with Replacement Service

 


Red = Elimination without Replacement Service (Alternative Services May Be Available)

  • Route 1
    • Route will no longer serve the vicinity north of Fletcher Ave. Buses will instead travel along Fletcher Ave (pre-MetroRapid alignment).
    • University North service would be taken over by Route 42 and HyperLINK service.
    • Weekday frequency will increase to 15 minute headways.
    • Further changes to the routing will be made in respects to Downtown Tampa circulation (see the “Downtown Tampa Circulation” section).
  • Route 2
    • Route 2 will be eliminated and replaced with optimized MetroRapid service.
    • Many stops will be consolidated with existing MetroRapid stops, while some stops become new MetroRapid stops.
  • Route 4
    • Route 4 will be eliminated entirely with no replacement service due to ultra low ridership.
    • Alternatives available include:
      • Route 360LX for MacDill AFB/South Interbay
      • HART Flex for Palma Ceia
      • Routes 14 & 19 for Hyde Park
      • HART Flex South Tampa will eventually expand to portions of South Tampa currently served by Route 4, but it is unclear as to when this will be done.
  • Route 5
    • Service from USF will be removed, with buses running along Fowler Ave and 30th St to the University Area Transit Center.
    • The USF Bull Runner Shuttle & HyperLINK would provide service into the USF Tampa Campus.
  • Route 6
    • Service from USF will be removed, with buses running along 56th St and Fletcher Ave to the University Area Transit Center.
    • The USF Bull Runner Shuttle & HyperLINK would provide service into the USF Tampa Campus.
  • Route 7
    • Service north of the HCC loop to Citrus Park will be eliminated entirely.
    • West Tampa Transfer Center will close permanently.
    • West Tampa segment will be revised to serve the North Blvd/Columbus Dr portion of current Route 14.
    • Route 11 will eventually replace the Main St segment.
  • Route 8
    • The original restructuring plan called for the removal of the loop in Progress Village, as well as other possible modifications. These modifications have been removed entirely due to customer concerns.
    • Further changes to the routing will be made in respects to Downtown Tampa circulation (see the “Downtown Tampa Circulation” section).
  • Route 9
    • Route will be merged with Route 18.
    • The portion north of Hillsborough Ave will be eliminated and replaced with the following services:
      • East Tampa will continue to have access to Route 9 along 14th/15th Streets, Route 12 along 22nd St, and Route 5 along 34th St.
      • Sulphur Springs will continue to have access to the revised 9 service along Rowlett Park Blvd, Riverhills Dr, and 30th St. Customers will also be able to access to revised Route 16 along Waters Ave, which will replace a portion of Route 9 through this vicinity.
      • Route 42 will replace the segment of Route 9 between Yukon Transfer Center and University Area Transit Center.
  • Route 10
    • Much of Route 10 will be eliminated and replaced by nearby Route 11 (Cypress St corridor has ultra low ridership).
    • Portions of Route 10 will be taken over by South Tampa Flex.
  • Route 11%
    • New Route 11 will provide replacement service for those residing in West Tampa along Main St.
    • Due to construction along Main St, this route will not be implemented right away. See the notes at the bottom of this section.
  • Route 12%
    • Weekday frequency will increase to 15 minute headways.
  • Route 14
    • Portion south of MLK Blvd will change so that buses remain on Howard Ave/Armenia Ave for the entire length of the route, instead of diverting to Downtown via North Blvd.
    • North Blvd service south of Columbus Dr will be taken over by Routes 7 & 11.
    • Route 1 will provide alternate service for the portion of North Blvd that will be left without transit service.
    • Weekday frequency on the 14 will increase to 30 minute headways and Sunday hourly service will be added.
  • Route 15
    • Orient Rd segment will be removed & the Orient Rd Jail will no longer be served.
  • Route 16
    • Route will no longer serve the Yukon Transfer Center and will remain on Waters Ave, with the eastern terminus looping via 17th St, Sitka St, & Rowlett Park Dr, providing a connection to Routes 9 & 12.
    • Customers wishing to connect to the Yukon Transfer Center can transfer to Route 45 along Waters Ave.
  • Route 17
    • New Route 17 hourly service will take over the Manhattan Ave/Port Tampa portion of Route 19.
  • Route 18
    • Route 18 will be merged with Route 9 and will retain the portion north of Hillsborough Ave.
    • Customers residing south of Hillsborough Ave can access Routes 5 & 12 for alternate service.
  • Route 19
    • Route will be split at Britton Plaza, with the new Route 17 taking over the Manhattan Ave portion. The WestShore Blvd portion will be eliminated entirely due to lower ridership.
    • Routing through Hyde Park will remain intact.
    • Weekday 30-minute frequency will expand to 10:00pm.
    • Saturday frequency will eventually increase to 30 minute headways, but it is unclear as to when this will occur.
    • Further changes to the routing will be made in respects to Downtown Tampa circulation (see the “Downtown Tampa Circulation” section).
  • Route 20X
    • No changes are being proposed for Route 20X, but running times may change.
  • Route 21LX
  • Route 22X
    • Route 22X will be eliminated and replaced by Route 60LX service. Route 46 would provide service between the Dover Park-N-Ride lot & Westfield Brandon, where customers can connect to the 60LX or 360LX to Downtown.
  • Route 24X
    • Route would be restructured to limited express operation, with new Downtown Tampa stops.
  • Route 25LX
    • Route would be modified with new Downtown Tampa stops.
  • Route 27LX
    • Route 28X will be eliminated entirely with no replacement service due to ultra low ridership.
    • Alternatives available include:
      • Routes 60LX & 360LX will provide alternating Monday through Saturday connections between Downtown Tampa & Brandon. Revised Routes 24LX & 25LX will also have Downtown connections during peak times.
      • Local connections to Westfield Brandon are provided via Routes 8, 31, 37, & 46.
  • Route 28X
    • Route 28X will be eliminated entirely with no replacement service due to ultra low ridership.
    • Customers can utilize TBARTA’s Vanpool Service by visiting the TBARTA Commuter Services website or calling 1-800-998-RIDE.
    • The Burnett Park Lot will become a Vanpool pickup/drop off location and will continue to serve Megabus trips. Other Park-N-Ride lots along the route will close.
  • Route 30
    • Western terminus will be moved to Tampa International Airport, with Route 60LX taking over the Town-N-Country portion.
  • Route 31
    • The original restructuring plan called for the 31 to be converted to an all-day limited express service, as well as other possible modifications. These modifications have been removed entirely due to customer concerns.
  • Route 32&
    • Segment east of NetPark Transfer Center will be taken over by Route 38.
    • Western terminus will extend to Tampa International Airport via Dale Mabry Hwy and International Plaza/Columbus Dr.
    • West Tampa Transfer Center will close permanently.
  • Route 33
    • Route will basically revert to its late 90s routing (before service to Hidden River was eliminated to take over the North Lakeview section of Route 36 during the system restructuring in the early 2000s) to replace the Hidden River section of MetroRapid.
    • University North service would be taken over by Route 42 and HyperLINK service.

      Route 33 as it was during the late 90s
  • Route 34%
    • No immediate changes will be made, but weekday frequency will eventually increase to 15 headways. See the note at the bottom of this section.
  • Route 36
    • Route will be modified to serve Dale Mabry Hwy between Tampa Bay Blvd and Britton Plaza.
    • Service south of Britton Plaza will be taken over by Route 360LX.
    • Buses will loop around the HCC Dale Mabry Campus by travelling Tampa Bay Blvd, Lois Ave, & MLK Blvd. Buses will then proceed northward on Himes Ave and follow the existing alignment to the Fletcher Ave loop.
    • Further changes may be made down the road to re-align the segment between Hillsborough Ave & Busch Blvd to Dale Mabry Hwy instead of Himes Ave.
    • West Tampa Transfer Center will close permanently.
  • Route 37
    • Service to Brandon Regional Hospital will be discontinued, with Route 46 and HyperLINK providing alternate service.
  • Route 38
    • New Route 38 will replace the hourly eastern segment of Route 32.
  • Route 39
    • Service to NetPark will be discontinued, with buses looping at Sligh Ave, 50th St, & Puritan Rd.
    • Yukon Transfer Center will no longer be served.
  • Route 41
    • Route 41 will be eliminated entirely with no replacement due to ultra low ridership.
  • Route 42
    • New Route 42 will serve heavier ridership areas in University North and University West that will suffer loses from the removal of Routes 1, 9, 18, & 33.
  • Route 45
    • Route will be modified as follows:
      • Service south of Waters Ave will remain largely unchanged, with the exception of service on Himes Ave being moved to Dale Mabry Hwy.
      • West Tampa Transfer Center will close permanently.
      • Service north of Waters Ave will replace Route 16 service to Yukon Transfer Center.
      • Service to University Mall will be offered via Route 12.
  • Route 46$$
    • Route will only serve areas in Brandon and Dover. The Causeway Blvd/Downtown segment will be eliminated entirely due to limited ridership and various expansion constraints.
  • Route 47LX
    • Route 47LX will be eliminated entirely with no replacement due to limited ridership.
    • Alternatives available include:
      • Route 31 local service for South County.
      • Routes 24X, 60LX, & 360LX for limited express connections to Downtown.
  • Route 51X
    • Segment along Fowler Ave and 56th St will be added to serve Temple Terrace City Hall.
    • Route 53LX$$$
      • Route 53LX will be eliminated entirely with no replacement due to limited ridership and various expansion constraints.
    • Route 60LX
      • Monday through Saturday all-day limited express service between Westfield Brandon Mall & Northwest Transfer Center via Downtown Tampa & Tampa International Airport, with buses operating every hour, replacing Route 30 through Town-N-Country & 61LX.
      • Departures from Westfield Brandon will be coordinated with Route 360LX to provide 30-minute headways between Brandon & Downtown.
      • Sunday service will operate hourly in Town-N-Country only (between Northwest Transfer Center & Tampa International Airport). There will be no Downtown or Brandon service.
    • Route 61LX
      • Route will be eliminated and replaced with Route 60LX service. Existing Park-N-Ride lots in Citrus Park & Carrollwood will become vanpool pickup/drop off locations.
    • Route 57
      • Route will be eliminated with no replacement service due to low productivity and ridership.
      • Alternatives available include:
        • Route 6 for direct connections between NetPark Transfer Center and the University Area Transit Center.
        • HyperLINK for University North.
        • USF Bull Runner & HyperLINK for the USF Tampa Campus.
    • Route 96 In-Towner^
      • No immediate changes will be made.
    • Route 97 In-Towner^
      • No immediate changes will be made.
    • Route 200X$
      • Route 200X will be eliminated entirely with no replacement service due to ultra low ridership.
      • Customers can utilize TBARTA’s Vanpool Service by visiting the TBARTA Commuter Services website or calling 1-800-998-RIDE.
    • Route 275LX%
      • New Monday through Friday all-day hourly limited express service will run between Tampa International Airport & the University Area Transit Center via Downtown Tampa/Marion Transit Center.
    • Route 360LX
      • Monday through Saturday all-day limited express service between Westfield Brandon Mall & MacDill AFB via Downtown Tampa, with buses operating every hour, replacing Route 22X.
      • Departures from Westfield Brandon will be coordinated with Route 60LX to provide 30-minute headways between Brandon & Downtown.
      • Sunday service will operate hourly in South Tampa only. There will be no Downtown or Brandon service.
    • MetroRapid North-South
      • MetroRapid North-South will absorb Route 2.
      • Existing stops will be kept, with some stops added on from Route 2.
      • Weekday frequency will increase to 12 minute headways during the day with 15-30 minute evening service.
      • Weekend service will be added with 30 minute headways.
    • HART Flex Brandon
      • Zone will be eliminated in favor of HyperLINK service.
    • HART Flex Northdale
      • No immediate changes will be made.
    • HART Flex South County
      • No immediate changes will be made.
    • HART Flex South Tampa
      • Northern boundary will extend to Cypress St to cover ground lost from Route 10. The fixed routing segment will also change.
      • Unclear if WestShore Plaza connection will be retained.
      • Possible expansion is being considered for areas south of Britton Plaza.
    • HART Flex Town-N-Country
      • No immediate changes will be made.
      • Zone will eventually be eliminated in favor of HyperLINK service.

Notes:

      • + Route 51X is undergoing changes that are unrelated to the service restructuring. Further changes may be made down the road to improve efficiency.
      • % Changes are being postponed until FY19.
      • ^ In-Towner Service is slated for elimination sometime in FY19, but may be retained longer due to Governor Scott vetoing funds that would have gone to starting up the Downtown Tampa HyperLINK zone. Alternative funding sources are being explored for the zone.
      • & It is currently unclear how expanded airport service will be structured. HART may have buses loop around the terminal as it currently does with Route 30. Sometime in late 2018, the airport stop will move from the main terminal complex to the new Rental Car Center, where buses will be able to load and unload airport customers, who will be able to connect with the new SkyConnect train to the main terminal.
      • $ Route 200X will eventually be replaced by PSTA’s planned replacement service from Clearwater, but this service is not expected to be up and running until sometime between 2020 and 2024. Contracted service may fill the gap for the interim, but HART currently does not have the resources to fulfill this.
      • $$ Depending on how additional county money is allocated, Route 46 may be retained largely as-is through FY19.
      • $$$ Route 53LX will be restored when additional funding becomes available.
      • * Tampa Bay Express has been re-branded by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) as “Tampa Bay Next”, but the controversial interstate toll lane elements remain as a key element to the plan, which is not sitting well with many in the community.

Permanent Closure of West Tampa Transfer Center

The West Tampa Transfer Center will permanently close as part of the system restructuring.

With the demise of the Tampa Bay Center Mall in the early 2000s, HART began exploring sites for a replacement transfer facility in the West Tampa region. While several sites were originally evaluated, the current location along Himes Ave was eventually chosen.

I’ve personally have never been a fan of the West Tampa Transfer Center. I strongly believe that HART management at the time chose the “cheap way out” in building what could have been a more lucrative, long-term transit hub for the area. The current location of the WTTC is extremely inefficient during events at Raymond James Stadium because the facility sits right across the street from the stadium and must close due to traffic and security limitations. This operation forces buses to load and unload customers along MacDill Ave by MLK Blvd.

Closing the WTTC permanently will allow customers in the area to make street-side transfers while allowing buses to run more efficiently throughout the day.


Downtown Tampa Circulation

#1522 running down Morgan St in downtown Tampa.

As the HART system restructuring progresses, all local bus routes that currently service the Marion St Transitway will be moved off the Transitway to Morgan St, with Route 1 – which doesn’t currently serve the Transitway – making a loop around Tampa St and Florida Ave, but continuing to serve the Marion Transit Center. HART is taking a phased approach to this portion of the restructuring, but it is unclear when each of the movements will occur (some will occur in October, 2017, but others will occur later).

At some point between 2018 and 2021, HART plans to launch an autonomous shuttle along the Transitway to shuttle customers between the south end of the Transitway and Marion Transit Center. Longer term plans have HART restructuring the Transitway to serve the regional express buses mentioned in the controversial Tampa Bay Express* plan.

There was previously discussion regarding the building of light rail along the Transitway, but from what I’m hearing, that plan has been deemed unfeasible due to limitations brought upon the current Downtown Tampa street grid. If the TECOline Streetcar were to be extended northward, it is likely it will be done so via the Franklin St Mall portion between Whiting St and Kennedy Blvd.

The In-Towner Trolley service will be retained for the meantime (see note at the bottom of this section), but will eventually face elimination in 2019 or 2020, as the current fleet of trolleybuses are approaching the end of their useful lives. Funding is currently being explored for a Downtown Tampa HyperLINK zone and the Tampa Downtown Partnership “Downtowner” Shuttle Service would provide additional alternative circulation in the Downtown area.


HART Resources

For complete information regarding the HART system restructuring, please visit the HART website, where they have a dedicated page with materials for you to look at. The HART Board of Directors will vote on the final restructuring plan at the August 7, 2017 meeting.


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HART Route 51X Park-N-Ride Change

Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART) will be enacting a service change on Monday, July 17, 2017 for Route 51X, which serves Downtown Tampa, New Tampa, and southeastern Pasco County during weekday rush hours. The change being made is regarding the Park-N-Ride lots that the route currently serves.

In an effort to better serve the southeastern Pasco communities, and to better position HART and Pasco County Transit for future system growth; a new Park-N-Ride lot is nearing completion in the Wiregrass district of Wesley Chapel, on Bruce B. Downs Blvd just south of the Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel campus.

The opening of the new Park-N-Ride will replace two existing Park-N-Ride facilities, one at the Victorious Life Church on Old Pasco Rd, and the other at the Tampa Korean United Methodist Church on County Line Rd. The last day of operation for the two latter Park-N-Ride lots will be on Friday, July 14, 2017.

To view the new routing and schedule for HART Route 51X, please see the flyer below. Please also check for further updates on www.goHART.org.

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Final Countdown for South Ferry Loop

The final countdown is on for the many transit fans in New York City to get photos and videos of the old South Ferry Loop subway station before it shuts down for good.

While an official reopening date has yet to be announced by the New York City MTA for the “newer” South Ferry platform – which was damaged by SuperStorm Sandy in 2012, hints have been dropping that the “newer” station will be open before the July 4th holiday. This flyer regarding weekend work on the (2) and (3) lines states that the (2) will detour down the South Ferry-bound tracks to terminate at Rector St during the weekends of June 19th and 26th, but afterward, trains would terminate at the “newer” South Ferry.

I can only guess that at this point, the MTA does not want to announce a date too soon when work is still wrapping up on the rebuilding of the “newer” station. There has been quite a lot of work done on the station and some work will continue on even after the “newer” platforms have reopened. One key element that will be present when the reopening does happen is the water-tight doors that will seal off the platform section if flooding occurs. I’m also hearing that the rebuilt platform will pretty much look identical to how it did when it first opened in 2009, but with some cosmetic changes and LED lighting (instead of fluorescent).

So with all of this said, you might be wondering, “why not just have the (2) train service the South Ferry Loop when it’s being detoured?” From my understanding, the MTA is concerned that rail operators on the (2) and (3) trains might not have the proper training to operate the train doors properly. Only the first five cars of the train can be opened at the loop, a key reason why the “newer” station was built (it was not feasible to expand the loop to accommodate 10-car trains).

To wrap things up, I’m very glad that I got to visit New York City while the South Ferry Loop was still open. I’ll discuss the loop more during my Transit Tourism series on my recent trip. But in the meantime, I already have a video up on YouTube showing the loop, and the adjoining Whitehall St station, that you can watch. I will make an update to this post when the official reopening date for the “newer” South Ferry platform is announced.


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HART Network Restructuring – Part 1

You may have heard during the past few months about Hillsborough Area Regional Transit. I’m not talking about the Premium Transit Feasibility Study or OneBusAway; but rather, I’m referring to the planned network restructuring that the agency is currently planning. The massive changes are a part of the normal Transit Development Plan update that HART, and every transit agency throughout the country, is required to perform periodically. Transit Development Plans are put into place to show the public and other government entities throughout the local, state, and federal levels, as to where transit services are now and where they should be in the future. Many factors are taken into consideration when a transit agency performs a TDP update – including demographical changes, funding levels, and vehicle fleet.

HART is currently conducting a system-wide analysis for the first time since the early 2000s and is seeking public feedback on it. The planned changes are aimed at reducing system inefficiencies while improving core service in the more populated sections of Hillsborough County. The re-evaluation comes at a crucial time – when many in the region are still undecided on where our overall transportation network should head towards, overall transit ridership is dropping across the nation due to economic changes and added transportation and work options, a possible reduction in property taxes in 2019, and an uncertain future over federal transit funding due to vastly different priorities between the previous Obama Administration and the current Trump Administration.


What changes are being made?

Much of the HART bus system as it exists today will be radically different. Many low ridership routes will be eliminated in favor of increasing frequency on higher ridership areas. HART Flex services will be reorganized, as will express bus service. HyperLINK services will ultimately get a boost in service, and overall duplication of stops and routes will be reduced. HART is also looking to serve a couple of areas where demand for transit service is high but aren’t being served yet.

You can view all of the planned changes on the HART Website, but I will highlight a few of the most significant changes.

  • Closure of the West Tampa Transfer Center
  • Elimination of Route 2, being replaced by optimized MetroRapid service that will operate on weekends as well.
  • Reorganization of Routes 7 & 30 (including removing Route 30 from the airport loop. Route 30 would eventually serve the new TPA Airport CONRAC facility).
  • Reorganization of Express services.
  • Expansion/Reorganization of HART Flex services.
  • Expansion of HyperLINK services.
  • Implementation of Uber/Lyft Discount Vouchers for late evening and overnight hours (where it is no longer feasible to run regular buses during the late nights with few riders on board).

How can I voice my concerns & questions?

I will be providing my own insight into these changes in Part 2 of this post. However, I want to help get the word out regarding some upcoming public workshops and hearings so that you’ll be in the know.

Public Workshops

Monday, June 19, 2017 (TODAY!!!)
HCC Southshore Campus
551 24th St NE
Ruskin, FL 33570
10:00 am – 12:00 pm
(10:30 presentation)

Tuesday, June 27, 2017
CDC of Tampa
1907 E. Hillsborough Ave #100
Tampa, FL 33610
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
(6:30 presentation)

Thursday, July 6, 2017
Kate Jackson Community Center
821 S. Rome Ave
Tampa, FL 33606
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
(6:30 presentation)

Monday, July 10, 2017
University Area CDC
14013 North 22nd St
Tampa, FL 33613
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
(6:30 presentation)

Additional Outreach Events

Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Marion Transit Center
1211 N. Marion St
Tampa, FL 33602
6:30 am – 8:30 am and 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Wednesday, June 21, 2017
University Area Transit Center
13110 N. 27th St
Tampa, FL 33612
6:30 am – 8:30 am and 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Thursday, June 22, 2017
Northwest Transfer Center
9325 W. Waters Ave
Tampa, FL 33615
6:30 am – 8:30 am and 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Sunday, June 25, 2017
Tampa Outdoor Market – Al Barnes Jr. Park
2902 N 32nd St
Tampa, FL 33605
1:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Sunday, June 25, 2017
Multicultural Family Day
Water Works Park
1710 N Highland Ave
Tampa, FL 33602
11:00 am – 7:00 pm

Tuesday, June 27, 2017
Marion Transit Center
1211 N. Marion St
Tampa, FL 33602
6:30 am – 8:30 am and 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Wednesday, June 28, 2017
University Area Transit Center
13110 N. 27th St
Tampa, FL 33612
6:30 am – 8:30 am and 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Town ‘N Country Public Library
7606 Paula Drive #120
Tampa, FL 33615
5:30 pm – 7:00 pm

Thursday, June 29, 2017
West Tampa Transfer Center
4201 N Himes Ave
Tampa, FL 33607
6:30 am – 8:30 am and 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Thursday, July 6, 2017
Westfield- Brandon Transfer Center
459 Brandon Town Center Mall
Brandon, FL 33511
6:30 am – 8:30 am and 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Friday, July 7, 2017
netp@rk Transfer Center
5003 N. 56th St
Tampa, FL 33610
6:30 am – 8:30 am and 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Saturday, July 15, 2017
Hillsborough County Neighborhoods Conference
Sheraton Tampa East
10221 Princess Palm Ave
Tampa, FL 33610
8:00 am – 2:30 pm

Saturday, July 15, 2017
Brandon Mall – Back to School Bash
459 Brandon Town Center Mall
Brandon, FL 33511
10:00 am – 3:00 pm

Formal Public Hearing
Final Opportunity for the public to voice their concerns before the HART Board votes on the changes!!!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017
HART Ybor, 1201 E. 7th Ave
Tampa, FL 33605
5:30 pm – 7:00 pm


Any questions concerning these community meetings and the public hearing may be directed to HART Service Development, 1201 East 7th Ave, Tampa, FL 33605, or by email at servdev@goHART.org / HARTinfo Line: (813) 254-4278 / TDD: (813) 626-9158

Special Accommodations:
Any person requiring special accommodations to attend or participate, pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act,
should contact HART within at least three (3) business days prior to the meeting at (813) 384-6553.


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Legalese | Disclosures

PSTA June 4, 2017 Service Changes

On Sunday, June 4, 2017, the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) will be enacting scheduling changes to the Central Ave Trolley, as well as Routes 18, 34, 66L, and 67. The most significant changes will be to the trolley and Route 34.

New schedules are available at www.psta.net.


Central Ave Trolley

The Central Ave Trolley (Route 35) will see the following changes to improve efficiency and also allow better connections to the Suncoast Beach Trolley during the week.

Monday through Thursday:
*Streamlined departures (buses will depart every 20 minutes during the day, and every 30 minutes during the evening).
*6:10AM trip from Grand Central will now travel to Pass-A-Grille.
*First AM trip leaving The Pier Parking Lots will now be at 6:05AM.
*10:50PM trip to Downtown St. Pete, will travel all the way to The Pier Parking Lots.

Fridays:
*Streamlined departures (buses will depart every 20 minutes during the day, and every 30 minutes during the evening).
*Last departure to Downtown St. Pete will now be 11:50PM
*Last departure to Pass-A-Grille will now be 10:35PM
*Last departure to 75th Ave/Gulf Blvd will now be 11:05PM

Saturdays:
*Streamlined departures (buses will depart every 30 minutes all day).
*6:30AM trip from 75th Ave/Gulf Blvd will be eliminated (unproductive trip).
*Last departure to The Pier Parking Lots will now be at 11:00PM.
*10:10PM round trip from The Pier Parking Lots will still terminate at Grand Central Station on the eastbound return, but will now depart from the lots at 10:15PM.
*After the 10:15PM departure from The Pier Parking Lots, buses will run to 75th Ave/Gulf Blvd only (these departures will be at 10:45PM, 11:15PM, and 11:45PM). Last buses leaving 75th Ave/Gulf Blvd will be 12:05AM and 12:30AM.

Sundays:
*Streamlined departures (buses will depart every 30 minutes all day).
*Last departure to The Pier Parking Lots will now be at 11:00PM.
*10:10PM round trip from The Pier Parking Lots will still terminate at Grand Central Station on the eastbound return, but will now depart from the lots at 10:15PM.


Route 18

*Downtown St. Pete terminating point will now be at 1st Ave N and 6th St N, instead of 1st Ave N and 3rd St
N.
*Last southbound Weekday trip (at 11:05PM) will now terminate in Downtown St. Pete, instead of Seminole City
Center.
*Minor running time changes.


Route 34

*Sunday frequency will increase from every 60 minutes (running two buses) to every 50 minutes (running three
buses).


Route 66L

*The 5:10AM and 6:15AM southbound departures from Pinellas Ave and Dodecanese Blvd will now start at Tarpon
Ave and Huey Ave (behind Tarpon Mall) at 5:00AM and 6:05AM respectively.
*Timepoint and running time corrections have been made.


Route 67

*Minor running time changes.


For more information regarding the above changes, or to voice any questions or concerns, please contact PSTA at (727)-540-1900, or visit www.psta.net.


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