TBARTA updates master plan with five highway projects
TAMPA - The Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority on Friday added five highway projects to its 2013 Master Plan Update scheduled to be adopted in June. The Florida Department of Transportation and other agencies are studying each of the projects that would be key links in TBARTA’s vision for connectivity in transportation corridors in the seven-county region it oversees. Those are:
Roosevelt Connector, connecting the Bayside Bridge, St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport, the Gateway area and Interstate 275 in Pinellas County.
I-275 managed toll lanes, to connect Pinellas and Hillsborough counties, Tampa International Airport and the Veterans Expressway.
Port Manatee Connector, linking Port Manatee to I-75 in northern Manatee and southern Hillsborough counties.
Suncoast Parkway 2, a proposed tollway extension to connect the Suncoast Parkway with U.S. 19 north of Crystal River.
State Roads 54/56, managed toll lanes between the Suncoast Parkway and I-75 in Pasco County to complete the northern loop of the Tampa Bay Beltway.
The Legislature created TBARTA in 2007 to implement a regional transportation master plan for Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Sarasota counties, although TBARTA has no authorization to raise revenue or mandate its plans be adopted.
Its master plan is intended to be a catalyst for discussion and collaboration on regional transportation priorities. Nearly 40,000 people from the general public participated in recent TBARTA telephone town hall meetings on master plan issues.
In addition to adding the priority highway projects, TBARTA’s update will refine transit and freight plans.