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Transportation

Florida Surpasses Texas In Airport Passengers

Jul 18, 2017
Tampa International Airport

Gov. Rick Scott spent the past week touting the state's move ahead of Texas in the overall number of passengers boarding airplanes.

A new Florida task force met for the first time this week to start looking into transportation issues people with developmental and intellectual disabilities face on a daily basis. The Task Force on Transportation Disadvantaged Services was created as part of a new law that just took effect.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

Several hundred people showed up Wednesday night at the first of many planned public meetings to discuss revamping the Tampa Bay area's transportation system. It's a reboot of TBX - Tampa Bay Express - which would have added more than 90 miles of toll lanes to existing free Interstate highways.

It's now called Tampa Bay Next.

The controversial plan to add express toll lanes to Tampa-area Interstate highways is getting a redo. TBX is gone - in its place is Tampa Bay Next.

It still includes express lanes on a rebuilt Howard Frankland Bridge, but adding toll lanes to Interstate 275 is now up in the air.

State Department of Transportation spokeswoman Kris Carson says this is an opportunity to hear what area residents have to say.

Tampa International Airport

Tampa International Airport had a record number of passengers during Spring Break.  Spokeswoman Emily Nipps said part of that growth is coming from new and expanded destinations from airlines that already serve the airport.   

Could the next car you buy drive itself? As technology for self-driving or "autonomous" vehicles improves, Florida lawmakers, transportation officials, and businesses are positioning the state as one of the leading test beds for driverless cars.

Lee County is making its own preparations, and the Tampa-Hillsborough Expressway Authority is just one of three pilot projects in the country getting federal Department of Transportation dollars. 

The Florida legislature is weighing a transportation related measure in the final days of session. Lawmakers are considering revising laws related to self-driving cars, driving under the influence and specialty license plates.

Hillsborough Area Regional Transit is adding Tesla model X's to its pilot program which it hopes will bring more bus riders on board.

Cesar Hernandez of HART says they're trying to address the "last mile" challenge of riders getting to the bus stop or getting home after a long day. Hyperlink will take bus riders for an extra fee.  And riders can pay cash and even call to book the ride if they aren't able to use the app. 

But let's face it, some people have historically not ridden the bus because they're in a hurry. 

Express Tampa Bay

The Florida Department of Transportation is hitting the reset button on the controversial plan known as TBX. It would add express toll lanes to nearly 100 miles of interstates in the Bay Area. But critics say it would bulldoze historic neighborhoods in the process.

FDOT is taking two years to research and respond to community feedback, and expects to have a revised plan by the end of 2019.


Tucker Hall

The Cross-Bay Ferry pilot project, which connects the downtowns of Tampa and St. Petersburg, will cease its run at the end of this month. But it has provided valuable information about the habits of would-be riders.

Former Hillsborough County Commissioner Ed Turanchik is a project advisor. And on behalf of his firm, Akerman, he's helping to put together a public-private partnership between Hillsborough County and the ferry service providers for a different ferry project.

Florida Department of Transportation

A bill that would eliminate building toll lanes on existing free interstate highways was shot down in a committee in the Florida House. It was voted down 8 to 6 in a House transportation committee, after passing through a similar committee in the state Senate.

A bill to ban red-light cameras passed the Florida House Thursday.

Florida Department of Transportation

A bill that would eliminate building toll lanes on existing free interstate highways has moved through the transportation committee of the Florida Senate.

A Senate panel is giving the thumbs up to a measure establishing state-wide regulations for ride hailing services like Uber and Lyft.

Robin Sussingham/WUSF News

Florida has become a hotbed for driverless car technology. The self-driving vehicle is moving from the Jetsons to a road near you, and things are moving fast.

At Florida Polytechnic University in Lakeland, students are just starting a brand new class that teaches the basics of building an autonomous vehicle.

Wikimedia Commons

The state is tweaking its plan to replace the Howard Frankland Bridge.


John Pastor/Flickr

The latest study by non-profit organization Smart Growth America ranks Florida as the most dangerous state to walk in the country.

Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles

More than 200 people in Florida were involved in crashes last year because of drivers who failed to move over for stopped vehicles, and 5,518 citations were issued.

And so far in 2017, three people have been killed.

Screenshot @TSA, @AskTSA on Twitter

The official holiday travel period started Friday and goes through the first week of the New Year, and Tampa International Airport officials are expecting almost a million travelers to pass through.

Brandes Backs Potential Ride Sharing Legislation

Dec 13, 2016

Republican Senator Jeff Brandes is once again throwing his weight behind ride-sharing legislation. The move would create blanket regulation across the state for companies such as Uber and Lyft. 

Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media

You have today and Wednesday to catch a free ride on the new Cross-Bay Ferry. The “Test the Waters” promotion is taking passengers on a first come basis with no reservations needed.

Organizers are hoping the free 60-minute cruise will attract passengers willing to pay for the ferry service. in the future. The one-way fare between Tampa and St. Petersburg will be $10 for adults.

HART (Hillsborough Area Regional Transit) and  transit company Transdev are launching a first-of-its-kind ridesharing service in Tampa.

The service, known as HART HyperLINK, offers rides from your house to the bus stop for $3. It will cover a three-mile radius surrounding four HART-designated transit stops in the Tampa area, with plans to expand to Brandon in December.

Lyft

The ridesharing companies Uber and Lyft are here to stay in Hillsborough County - for now.

The Public Transportation Commission on Wednesday approved a temporary operating agreement for the two companies to operate in Hillsborough for the next 13 months.

Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF Public Media

Ever since Tony Jannus flew the first scheduled airline flight from St. Petersburg to Tampa in 1914, people have looked for ways to “bridge” the bay.

Now, for $10 and 50 minutes of your time, the Cross-Bay Ferry can transport you between St. Petersburg and Tampa. Public service starts Friday.

wbur.org

Tampa's Uber and Lyft drivers won't know for another month if local regulators are going to authorize them to operate, legally, in Hillsborough County.

The already congested Howard Frankland Bridge could soon be losing a lane. 

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) wants to create an express lane on the bridge. To do this, they would add a toll on one of the existing lanes in each direction, leaving only three free lanes. Depending on the time of day, this toll could cost up to $6.00

Courtesy of Tucker Hall

You will soon be able to test ride the new Cross-Bay Ferry.

One of the architects of the project, Ed Turanchik, said the plan is to give the public a chance to try out the ferry for free during Thanksgiving week. There will also be Friday through Sunday service offered for entertainment and tourism purposes beginning Nov. 4.

Bus riders in Hillsborough County have a new, smart phone feature that can help them find the most efficient route.

Direct Flights To Link Tampa Bay, San Francisco Bay

Jul 25, 2016
Tampa International Airport

More than 200 flights depart from Tampa International Airport every day.

But soon, one will fly non-stop to San Francisco.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

Gov. Rick Scott was at Port Tampa Bay today to unveil two huge cranes that will allow port workers to unload cargo from larger ships going through the newly-widened Panama Canal. 

Scott and U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio pushed a ceremonial button that activated a pair of towering gantries at Tampa's port. The 30-story cranes are part of a $24 million effort by the state and the port to accommodate larger ships coming from the Panama Canal.

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