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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Be a Part of the Future of HART

You can offer comments at an upcoming
HART public meeting.
With record ridership numbers still coming in , Hillsborough County residents have shown that public transportation is an important asset in our community.

But there's always room for improvement, and we need your help to make HART service even better. HART is proposing a number of changes that will streamline service, making our operations more efficient. As always, before we implement any changes, we need to hear from you. We're holding a series of open-house style public meetings starting next Tuesday to gather your comments on the proposals. There will also be one public hearing on March 17th.

Please join us at any of the following locations for more information and to offer your input:

Open house meetings
Tuesday, March 1, 2011, 6:30 p.m.
Brandon Chamber of Commerce
330 Pauls Drive #100, Brandon, 33511

Thursday, March 3, 2011, 6:30 p.m.
Kate Jackson Community Center
821 S. Rome Avenue, Tampa, 33606

Wednesday, March 9, 2011, 6:30 p.m.
Temple Terrace Public Library
202 Bullard Parkway, Temple Terrace, 33617

Thursday, March 10, 2011, 4:30 p.m.
HART West Tampa Transfer Center
4201 N. Himes Avenue, Tampa 33607

Tuesday, March 15, 2011, 6:30 p.m.
Town N’ Country Regional Public Library
7606 Paula Drive, Suite 120, Tampa, 33615

Wednesday, March 16, 2011, 6:30 p.m.
SouthShore Regional Library
15816 Beth Shields Way, Ruskin, 33573

Public hearing
Thursday, March 17, 2011, 4 to 6 p.m.
TECO Plaza, TECO Hall North Conference Room
702 N. Franklin Street, Tampa, 33602, downtown Tampa

Proposals Shorten Routes, Improve Frequency, Consolidate Service
Some of the changes will improve travel time on certain routes. For example, one of the longest routes in HART's system, the South Hillsborough County to downtown path traveled by Route 31, would be shortened to improve frequency from the current two hours to one hour. In addition, Route 30 between downtown and Town N' Country via the Tampa International Airport will be divided into two new routes for increased efficiency.

In some cases, we're proposing to replace a low-ridership circulator route with the popular new HART Flex service, a neigborhood-based option that offers more personalized service.

We believe changes like these, and the rest of the proposals outlined below, will help us provide better service for all of our customers.

Keep reading for short descriptions of all proposed changes, and click here for maps and more from HART's website.

South County
  • Replace Route 87 (Southshore Connector) with expanded community Flex service providing timed connections to Routes 31 and 53LX (proposed route).
  • Replace Route 35LX (Brandon/Southshore Limited Express) with Route 53LX (South County/Brandon via US 301) providing expanded service between South County and the Westfield Brandon Mall via US 301
  • Discontinue Westfield Brandon mall to downtown Tampa service on Route 31 (South Hillsborough), improving frequency from 2 hours to 1 hour between South County and the Westfield Brandon mall. Passengers who wish to continue travel to downtown can connect to Routes 8 and 46 at the mall.
Brandon Area
  • Begin new Route 26X (North Brandon/MacDill AFB Express) to provide express service between North Brandon and MacDill AFB. This route will replace one morning and one afternoon trip on Route 24X, and one morning and one afternoon trip on Route 25LX.
  • Reduce Routes 24X (FishHawk/Riverview/MacDill AFB Express) and 25LX (South Brandon/MacDill AFB Limited Express) by one trip each in the AM and PM; these trips will be added to the new Route 26X.
  • Reduce Route 46 (West Brandon/Davis Islands) to rush hour service only
Temple Terrace
  • Replace Route 23X (Temple Terrace Express) with limited stop trips on Route 6 (56th St.)
Northwest County
  • To improve schedule reliability, split Route 30 (Town ‘N Country) into two routes: Route 29 (Downtown to Tampa International Airport via Kennedy Boulevard) and new Route 30 (Town ‘N Country to Tampa International Airport)
  • Replace Route 59LX (Westchase/Town ‘N Country Limited Express) with new Route 61X (Town ‘N Country/Westshore/Downtown Tampa)
  • Replace Route 88 (Town ‘N Country Connector) with Town ‘N Country Flex. Route to run 6:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. versus rush hour only for Route 88
  • To improve schedule reliability, Route 16 will operate on Waters Ave. between Hanley Road and Northwest Transfer Center. Service will be provided by Town ‘N Country Flex
Carrollwood Area
  • Extend Route 20X to Land O’ Lakes in Pasco County
  • To improve schedule reliability, split Route 36 (Dale Mabry Highway/Himes Avenue) into two routes: Route 36 (N. Dale Mabry Highway/Himes Avenue) and Route 38 (S. Dale Mabry Highway/MacDill AFB). Route to be split at West Tampa Transfer Center
  • Begin new Northdale Flex to serve Dale Mabry Highway corridor between Fletcher Avenue and St. Joseph's Hospital North
  • Mission Bell to be north terminus for Route 36, west terminus for Route 33 (Fletcher Ave.) and south terminus for Northdale Flex
South Tampa
  • Replace Route 89 (South Tampa Connector) with new South Tampa Flex
Be sure to stop by one of the meetings listed above and let us know what you think! We'll consider every comment; final recommendations will be on the agenda of the HART Board of Directors at their April 4, 2011 meeting, for implementation in July 2011.

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Comments to this blog are moderated by HART staff. Constructive comments are welcome; any obscene, threatening, or otherwise inappropriate comments will be deleted before posting. Questions about specific service ("is my bus on time?") cannot be answered here, and should be directed to the HARTinfo Line at (813) 254-HART (4278). General questions may be addressed in future posts.