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Clearwater workshop on Tampa Bay-regional transportation scheduled next week

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by
This week, Florida state lawmakers expect to pass a bill reconfiguring TBARTA, with the ultimate hope of jump-starting regional cooperation to improve Tampa Bay-area transit.

Meanwhile, a workshop designed to outline a framework for improving regional coordination on transit and transportation is scheduled to take place Friday, May 12.

That’s where there will be a “Regional Transportation Leadership Workshop” taking place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at St. Petersburg College Collaborative Labs, EpiCenter Building, 13805 58th St North in Clearwater.

Beth Alden, the executive director of the Hillsborough County Metropolitan Planning Organization, said the workshop aims to address four main topics:

— How to advance major regional priority projects;

— How to maintain a region’s unique character while becoming more regionally connected;

— What kind of planning ideally occurs at a multicounty level;

— How to house and financially support a regional planning process.

Alden said that TBARTA is already working on the procurement process of hiring a research consultant who will take the results from next week’s workshop and compare it to best practices happening on this front around the country.

Meanwhile, the Hillsborough MPO announced that for the third year in a row, a review of that Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) will be discussed in a prime-time meeting scheduled for June 13.

That’s the meeting last year voting on the controversial Tampa Bay Express project, a meeting which lasted until after 2 a.m.


Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at

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