PSTA unveils completed SunRunner rapid transit station in Tampa Bay
Pinellas Suncoast Transport Authority(PSTA) unveiled the first of 16 SunRunner Rapid Transit stations in Tampa Bay, St. Pete. The bus station is located at the corner of First Avenue North and Fifth Street North; Designed with the alluring brand colors of yellow and teal PSTA, which are bright colors that help improve its visibility for passengers, according to PSTA CEO Brad Miller.
New SunRunner rapid transit station to feature public art murals
This new SunRunner Rapid Transit station will be the first of several BRT projects and it covers a 10.3 mile road connecting St. Pete’s Beach with downtown St. Petersburg. The 40-foot-long SunRunner buses and the station itself will also feature public art murals by local artist, Catherine Woods, who took thousands of photos used in the design of the bus station. This artistic design reflects the individual characteristics of each neighborhood and business district along the route. Pat Gerrard, chairman of the board of PSTA, also mentioned that using this new SunRunner transit would help eliminate the difficulties encountered when finding parking spots on the beach or downtown.
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The SunRunner rapid transit station will include several amenities such as level boarding platforms, crosswalks, Wi-Fi, multi-gate boarding, on-board bike spaces, as well as safety improvements for cyclists. Buses from the station will use semi-dedicated, brick-red lanes, which they will take every 15 minutes during the day and every 30 minutes at night; thus reducing the number of stops along the route. Most of the traffic would also be bypassed by buses, as the semi-dedicated lanes are mostly reserved for SunRunner buses only.
The SunRunner rapid transit station is also near a future 28-story mixed-use development, which is being developed by the Florida-based DeNunzio Group. According to Michael Flood, the senior project manager for DeNunzio Group, the new solar station is quite beneficial to their development, as it offers transit access to the hotel’s guests of 120 rooms, who need a means of transport to get to the St. Pete Beach. He pointed out that being able to jump on the SunRunner at the bottom would be huge for his business, especially since it’s within walking distance.
Although the SunRunner rapid transit station is complete, its official opening time is scheduled for August 2022. According to Miller, this development will represent the first-ever rapid transit after an extended period in the Tampa Bay area. He also pointed out that the inclusion of beautiful public art will make the rapid transit facilities in Tampa Bay quite special.