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City to pursue funding to extend streetcar line

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City to pursue funding to extend streetcar line

By Times Staff Writer

Published September 24, 2004

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TAMPA - The Tampa City Council on Thursday agreed to pursue federal funding to extend the streetcar line to Whiting Street.

The TECO Line Streetcar System now runs from Ybor City to the Channel District to the Tampa Convention Center. The next leg is planned to run north to Franklin Street through downtown Tampa to Whiting Street.

HARTline runs the streetcar, but Council member Shawn Harrison said Hillsborough public transit agency hasn't aggressively sought funding for the extension.

"Streetcar projects nationwide are huge," said Harrison, who recently returned from a public transit conference in Los Angeles. Competition for federal money to fund them is fierce, he said. Council member Linda Saul-Sena, a member of the HARTline board, said having the city behind the effort to get federal funding would give it an "extra oomph."

Most of the $53-million spent on the first leg of the streetcar system came from federal agencies, Harrison said. Tampa contributed $13-million to the construction, and Mayor Pam Iorio said she won't commit any money to the extension.

[Last modified September 24, 2004, 01:20:23]

http://www.sptimes.com/2004/09/24/H...ue_fundin.shtml

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How far north is whiting?  I remember a dedicated bus line going north through the area.  I imagine the line would follow that.

Anybody have more details?

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TecoExpand2.jpg

Whiting Street is only about another 5 or 6 blocks north of where the trolley now terminates. Imo, if they're going after federal funding they should at least expand the system north of downtown to Palm Avenue, which would connect the historic Tampa Heights neighborhood to downtown, the Channel District and Ybor City.

Now that I look at the map, instead of making the system into a loop, they should expand the system down Marion Street (2 or 3 blocks west of Franklin), thus eliminating the bus route. Then they should build an east-west line that crosses the Hillsborough River to connect Univ. of Tampa, Hyde Park & SoHo to the existing lines. Then you would end up with a decent system that at least gets you around the older denser neighborhoods in the city.

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Thanks,

At the very least they should try to get to the Performing arts center as quickly as possible. Looks like a good plan though. Definitely have to get across the river somewhere along the line.

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