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HART officials discuss proposed ‘AirPorter’ dedicated bus service to Tampa International from downtown Tampa and St. Petersburg

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At Monday’s joint HART-PSTA meeting, HART CEO Katherine Eagan introduced a proposed dedicated bus service that would connect downtown Tampa, downtown St. Petersburg, and the Carillon area of St. Petersburg to Tampa International Airport on Monday. Called “The AirPorter,” the service would use a “premium vehicle” that would run every 15 minutes during rush hour (6 a.m. to 9 a.m., and 4 to 7 p.m.), and every half hour at other times, up until 9 p.m. on weeknights and 9:30 p.m. on…

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Tampa streetcar to begin morning service beginning Monday

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Starting next Monday, the TECO Line Streetcar System in Tampa will begin operating at 7 a.m. for commuters in downtown, the Channel District, and Ybor City. It’s the beginning of a six-month pilot program to measure demand for morning service hours along the streetcar line. The 2.7 mile long opened for service in 2002 amid great fanfare, but has been troubled for years with low ridership. It’s been considered more of an amenity for tourists than a means of transportation for city residents, in…

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Jeff Vinik, Jeff Brandes discuss future of Tampa Bay transportation at HART summit

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In the future of transportation in Hillsborough County, buses and rail may be taking a back seat to autonomous vehicles and other cutting-edge technologies. Although the Hillsborough Area Transit Authority (HART) primarily offers bus service, buses weren’t the focus of attention at the “State of Transit” event Tuesday at CAMLS in downtown Tampa. Nor should they have been, as the theme of the day was “Beyond the Bus.” No speaker in the hour-plus session was more visionary on transportation’s future in the…

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Bus ridership down in both Hillsborough and Pinellas counties in 2016

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In what almost seemed like a monthly occurrence in recent years, the PR staffs of both the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit agency (HART) and the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) were regularly issuing out press releases touting record ridership numbers. That is definitely not the case in 2016. Speaking at the agency’s Finance and Audit Committee meeting Monday, HART CEO Katherine Eagan said ridership in 2016 is down some “five to six percent” in the current fiscal year, a trend she said is…

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