Last month, the Metropolitan Planning Organization approved the SouthShore Transit Circulator Study. A joint effort of the MPO and the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART), the study recommends a combination of new routes and flex routes serving Riverview, Gibsonton, Apollo Beach, Ruskin, Sun City Center and Wimauma.
Specifically, two new two-way loops would operate on Gibsonton Drive, US Hwy 41, Big Bend Road, US Hwy 301, and SR 674. New flex route zones would be established along Gibsonton Drive and Big Bend Road, while the existing flex zone would be expanded along SR 674. The new and expanded routes would serve St. Joseph’s Hospital, HCC, the Amazon distribution center, and other emerging destinations.
SouthShore is the fastest growing area in Hillsborough County, doubling its population in the past ten years and accounting for nearly half of the permits pulled in the unincorporated county. The MPO and HART focused on this area due to changing needs that accompany rapid growth. The recommendations endorsed by the MPO were based on a technical evaluation and input from the public. The study is scheduled to be considered by the HART board of directors’ Major Projects Committee and will be considered for funding in the Transit Development Plan.