Friday, March 2, 2012

Streetcar Extension = Urban Excellence!

Communities are only as great as the transit that serves them.

There is a special relationship between mass transit and the community it serves. Mass transit connects communities, mobilizes residents and fosters growth and civic pride within the community.

Investments made in transportation are investments made in the community. 

Rendering of CAMLS facility showing streetcar connectivity
The TECO Line Streetcar has been credited with spurring $1.2 billion in development along the streetcar line since 2005.  Development such as the $30 million University of South Florida's Center for Advanced Learning and Simulation (CAMLS), which recently opened just south of the new Whiting Station.

CAMLS' proximity to the streetcar will provide mobility along the line to doctors in town for the facility's research and training innovations. The TECO Line Streetcar has spawned patterned growth and foot traffic (with money to spend) to businesses along the line.

In addition to CAMLS, the extension also provides improved connectivity to a larger number of hotels, restaurants, residents, retail, office and government buildings.

This investment in expanded downtown connectivity was rewarded on Feb. 29., when the TECO Line Streetcar extension to Whiting street was awarded with an "Urban Excellence Award" from the Tampa Downtown Partnership. The Tampa Downtown Partnership is a not-for-profit downtown Tampa business advocacy group.

"Your efforts encourage a more vibrant and connected environment between the cultural, residential and business destinations in Downtown Tampa and Ybor City," remarked the Partnership.

HART officials posing with Urban Excellence Award
About the Urban Excellence Awards

The Downtown Tampa Urban Excellence Awards celebrate businesses, organizations, individuals, events and projects that have made significant contributions toward creating a unique, vibrant and diverse downtown environment – and have made a lasting, positive impact on downtown Tampa. Each year an awards jury representing a cross-section of downtown constituencies selects six (6) award winners honoring the leadership, innovation, hard work, talent and community spirit.

Phase IIa

The original 2.4-mile system opened in 2002 and was built to allow for phased expansion. Phase IIa Streetcar Expansion Project extended service an additional .3 miles into the core downtown Tampa district. Click here to view a map of Phase I and IIa of the TECO Line Streetcar System. 

On Track for the Future

The Urban Land Institute Panel, a non-profit organization of land use experts, lauded the streetcar expansion and encouraged future extensions during their presentation of the September 2011, Tampa Central City Conceptual Development Plan. In keeping with the original visionary approach of the streetcar system, the Phase IIa extension was built to allow for future system expansion. 


  1. How about a more modern post? What plans for expansion in 2013/2014? What about extending hours so people can ride to and from work from channelside?

  2. Extend the line atleast to 4miles to be viable and increase frequency.The line is too short to useful .Intregrate the line into the local transit system.


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