Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Route of the Week: Route 34

With a diverse service area roughly the size of Rhode Island, Hillsborough County provides a great mix of urban, suburban and rural destinations for our riders. Think about the destinations that you can see and experience with the HART transportation network!

Route 34 operates between NWTC and Netp@rk
This week, we feature Route 34 as the Route of the Week!

Route 34 operates 7 days a week between Northwest Transfer Center and Netp@rk Transfer Center. Service operates Weekdays from 4:50 a.m. - 12:05 a.m. and on Weekends from 6:00 a.m. - 9:25 p.m.

Route 34 is currently the third busiest HART route, and our busiest east-west route. Roughly 620,000 rides have been taken so far in FY2016!

Operating mostly along Hillsborough Avenue, Route 34 serves parts of Town 'N Country, Seminole Heights, and East Tampa, providing residents with a healthy set of restaurant and entertainment options.

Here are some highlights:

Credit: Ichicoro Ramen
Once a blighted area, Seminole Heights has turned into a growing culinary and leisure destination. In terms of food, the area is a mix of culinary styles from fresh Mexican food at the original Taco Bus, to elevated American comfort food (Ella's Americana Folk Art Cafe,) and ramen, rice bowls, etc. (Ichicoro Ramen).

Those looking for Happy Hour, will want to check out the Independent Bar and Cafe, offering 14 taps of craft beer with a cafe menu, and Red Star Rock Bar, with live music on Friday and Saturday nights!

Those looking for family fun in Town 'N Country have quite a few options to check out as well:
  • Skateworld of Tampa features arcade games, laser tag, bounce houses, and a skating rink
  • Pin Chasers Veterans is a 40-lane bowling alley feature pool, darts, etc.
  • Northwest Family YMCA features a swimming pool, along with basketball, football, and soccer!
  • Twistee Treat serves up ice cream scoops, sundaes, malts, and hot dogs!
Other Route 34 destinations include:
Riders can transfer to Routes 1,2,5,6,7,9,12,14,15,16,18,30,32,36,37,39,41,45,57,61LX, and MetroRapid from Route 34.

From Ella's to Everest University, HART Takes You There.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Route of the Week: Route 31

Route 31 operates between Brandon and SouthShore
With a diverse service area roughly the size of Rhode Island, Hillsborough County provides a great mix of urban, suburban and rural destinations for our riders. Think about the destinations that you can see and experience with the HART transportation network!

We're taking Route of the Week to South County this week. Route 31 is our Route of the Week!

Route 31 operates between the Westfield Brandon Transfer Center to the Gibsonton/Apollo Beach area. Service operates weekdays from 5:10 a.m. - 7:05 p.m.

Route 31 is one of our longest routes, connecting South County to Brandon and the rest of the HART system.

Brandon Destinations:
  • Westfield Brandon - (Connection to Routes 8,31,37,46,53LX, HARTFlex Brandon)
  • Bonefish Grill
  • HomeGoods
  • Buffalo Wild Wings
  • Orangetheory Fitness
  • Fitness for $10
  • Anytime Fitness
  • Square One Brandon

Winthrop is home to a number of restaurants and retail
Riverview/Gibsonton Destinations:
  • Winthrop Town Centre (EATS! American Grill, Cappy's Pizza, Acropolis Green Taverna, Starbucks, Ciccio's Cali, Menchie's Frozen Yogurt)
  • Florida Urban Organics
  • Riverview Fresh Market
  • Riverview Recreation Center
  • HART Riverview Oaks Park-n-Ride - (Connection to 24X,27LX,53LX)
  • Trust Me BBQ
  • Gardenville Recreation Center

Apollo Beach Destinations:
  • Massimos Pizza, Subs, and Salads
  • Kimi's Ice Cream & Sweets
  • Apollo Beach Park-n-Ride - (Connection to 31, 47LX)
  • Four Stacks Brewing Company

HCC Students can purchase a special HART Semester Pass!
Ruskin/SouthShore Destinations:
  • Amazon Warehouse - Route 31 was extended to the Amazon warehouse in Dec. 2014
  • HCC SouthShore Campus
  • Lennard High School
  • Ybor Grille
  • Joyce Ely Health Center
  • SouthShore Corporate Park
  • SouthShore Regional Service Center
From Amazon, to Anytime Fitness, HART Takes You There.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Route of the Week: HARTFlex Town 'N Country

With a diverse service area roughly the size of Rhode Island, Hillsborough County provides a great mix of urban, suburban and rural destinations for our riders. Think about the destinations that you can see and experience with the HART transportation network!

HARTFlex Town 'N Country is our featured Route of the Week!

HARTFlex service
HARTFlex is only $2 for an all-day pass!
Quick refresher on HARTFlex service. HARTFlex vans operate along a fixed route (like traditional bus service). However, the service will also "flex" from the fixed route within the designated zone. Patrons wanting to be picked up or dropped off outside the designated route, can make an advanced reservation. HARTFlex reservations may be made by calling 813-254-4278 anywhere from 2 hours, to 3 days in advance of your trip. Fares are $1.00 per trip, or $2.00 for an all-day HARTFlex pass.

HARTFlex Town 'N Country operates on a loop Monday-Friday. First trip leaves Northwest Transfer Center (NWTC) at 5:15 a.m. and the last trip is at 6:15 p.m. The service
departs NWTC every 60 minutes.

The Town 'N Country Flex zone serves a mix of destinations from educational facilities (Alonso High School, Town N Country Charter High School) to leisure (Pk's PlayZone and Grille, Skateworld of Tampa, Shimberg Park, Town 'N Country Nature Preserve, etc.).

Outdoorsy types should know that Tampa Bay's only Gander Mountain store is accessible via HARTFlex Town 'N Country. While fans of the sustainable, organic agriculture movement should drop by Sweetwater Organic Community Farm!

Westchase Town Center is home to a mix of dining, shopping, etc.
HARTFlex Town 'N Country also serves the Westchase area with service to the Westchase Town Center, home to the following mix of restaurants and services:
  • Burger 21
  • Tampa Pizza Company
  • Maloney's Irish Pub
  • Tijuana Flats
  • The Grind Coffee Bar and Cafe
  • Zen Bistro + Sushi Bar
  • Belanova Salon
  • Siam Thai
  • World of Beer

Catch Twenty Three, Irish Pub 31 and YMCA West Park Village are also accessible in the Westchase area with HARTFlex service.

Transfers to Route(s) 16,30,34,39,61LX, and connection to Pinellas via the North County Connector from PSTA are available from NWTC.

From Skateworld to Westchase, HART Takes You There.


HARTFlex Town 'N Country Service Map
HARTFlex Town 'N Country Service Map



Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Route of the Week: Route 33

Route 33 operates between Carrollwood & the University Area
With a diverse service area roughly the size of Rhode Island, Hillsborough County provides a great mix of urban, suburban and rural destinations for our riders. Think about the destinations that you can see and experience with the HART transportation network!

This week, we take a trip on Route 33!

Route 33 operates between the Carrollwood area and the University Area Transit Center, via Fletcher Avenue. The service operates Monday-Friday from 4:50 a.m. - 10:30 p.m., and on the Weekends from 6:00 a.m. - 9:45 p.m. Almost 210,000 trips have been taken on Route 33 so far in FY2016! 

Melting Pot is 1 of  many restaurants & shops in The Village Center
The Route 33 serves the heart of Carrollwood. Hop off at Dale Mabry Highway and Fletcher Avenue, and check off your to-do list with stops at Publix, Shear Art Salon & Spa, and Banfield Pet Hospital - all located in The Village Center. Those looking to grab dinner instead, can do so at The Melting Pot, Tampa Tap Room, Panera Bread, and more! Riders can also transfer to Route 36 and HARTFlex Northdale at the HART stop on Dale Mabry at Fletcher Avenue.

Families will want to take note of Route 33 service to Malibu Grand Prix. Featuring Go Karts, mini golf, an arcade and more, Malibu Grand Prix is a great place to entertain the kids! Route 33 drops off in front of the family fun center at Nebraska Avenue and 145th Avenue.

Old signage and memorabilia lined the walls of The "Skipperdome"
"Hippies use side door," reads a sign in front of the famous Skipper's Smokehouse. The Key West-style restaurant serves up tasty, "Floribbean" food, and some of the best wings in Tampa Bay! Their blackened grouper reuben has been featured on The Travel Channel's "Best Sandwich in America". Home to the "Skipperdome," Skipper's is also one of the most unique music venues in the Bay Area! Route 33 riders can hop off at Nebraska Avenue and Skipper Road.

Some other destinations include: Taco Bus, Side Splitter's Comedy Club, Tampa Bay Farmers' Market, North Tampa Community Head Start Center, Tampa Family Health Center.

Arriving into the University Area Transit Center, Route 33 provides connections to Route(s) 1,2,5,6,9,12,18,33,45,57,21LX, and MetroRapid, as well as, the University of South Florida's Bull Runner.

From Skipper's to Skeeball, HART Takes You There.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Go HART when you Pokémon GO around Town!

Pikachu captured by @RevokeMyManCard on Route 19!
A Weedle on Route 9. A Pikachu on Route 19. With over 75 million downloads worldwide, it's hard to avoid hearing about Pokemon Go.

If you're not exactly familiar, here is a quick overview of the game: Players "hunt" Pokémon (fictional creatures) with an interesting twist... communities such as Tampa, are the "hunting" grounds. The app uses GPS to track player's movements on the virtual screen and uses augmented reality to immerse players in the world of Pokémon!

One of the great benefits of this game is the increased physical activity for players as they search around town. This is where transit fits nicely into the Pokémon puzzle. Studies show that transit users get 3x more physical activity than non-users on average.

*Lightbulb moment*

Why not catch Pokémon on the walk to the bus stop? Or, while waiting for the bus at one of our Transit Centers? Marion Transit Center is a Pokéstop!

This way, you're saving time, money, and the environment, while you catch 'em all!

So you've decided to park the car and give transit a try. Here are some things to keep in mind:
  • Stay Alert: Always be aware of your surroundings and never walk in front of a HART bus or van, upon exiting the vehicle
  • Hold on: Hold on to hand grips or seats while on board HART buses and vans. Hard to catch Bulbasaur on the floor!
  • Be courteous: Please use headphones while playing the game on board, and while waiting for the bus

Catch Pokémon in the cool A/C!
INSIDER TIP: We've heard that The TECO Line Streetcar System is a GREAT way to catch Pokémon, while staying cool in the A/C! Tons of Pokéstops and gyms along the line running through Ybor City, the Channel District, and Downtown Tampa.

Share your Pokémon captures with us @goHART and @TampaStreetcar!


Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Route of the Week: Route 7

With a diverse service area roughly the size of Rhode Island, Hillsborough County provides a great mix of urban, suburban and rural destinations for our riders. Think about the destinations that you can see and experience with the HART transportation network!

Route 7 gets the Route of the Week treatment this week!

Route 7 operates between Citrus Park and Marion Transit Center
Route 7 operates between the Citrus Park Super Walmart and Marion Transit Center. Service is Monday - Sunday, with weekday service from 4:40 a.m. - 9:40 p.m. and weekends from 6:30 a.m. - 7:35 p.m.

Route 7 is fairly unique in that the route doesn't begin and end at a Transit or Transfer Center. The route actually ceases at Henderson Blvd. and Cedar Creek Blvd., located right near the Citrus Park Super Walmart.

Whether for work, school, or play, the Route 7 is your best bet!

Employment destinations include: One Buccaneer Place (Administrative home of The Tampa Bay Buccaneers), St. Joseph's Hospital, Tampa Housing Authority, and the University of Tampa.

Looking for leisure in your off time? Route 7 is there for you after work, or on your day off!

Tampa's "Great Lawn" Curtis Hixon is served by Route 7!
  • AMC Theatres Veterans 24 features IMAX and first-run films in a multi-theater complex setting
  • LaFleur's Gymnastics - Tampa provides gymnastics training and swim lessons for all ages
  • One Buccaneer Place - Headquarters of The Tampa Bay Buccaneers. This 145,000 sq.ft. facility features three, full-length practice fields, weight room etc. In August 2016, the Buccaneers will hold 11 Training Camp practices that will be open to the public.
  • Curtis Hixon Park - Tampa's "Great Lawn" is home to some of Tampa's biggest and best events. Even without an event, the park is a great place to play Frisbee or have a picnic.

Need a lift to class? Route 7 serves a mix of high school and college campuses:

UT is served by Route 7 at Cass St. & N. Blvd.
  • Leto High School - (Manhattan Ave. & Sligh Ave.)
  • Blake High School - (Main St. & N. Blvd.)
  • Tampa Preparatory High School - (N. Blvd. & Cypress St.)
  • University of Tampa - (Cass St. & N. Blvd.)
  • Keiser University - (Anderson Rd. & Waters Ave.)
  • Argosy University - (Main St. & Howard Ave.)
  • The Art Institute of Tampa - (MLK Blvd. & Himes Ave.)

Students attending the University of Tampa, Keiser University, Argosy University, and the Art Institute of Tampa receive a 25% discount on 31-day passes. Discounted price ($48.75) is only available when purchased directly from the institution.

From first-run flicks, to Curtis Hixon picnics, HART Takes You There.

Monday, July 25, 2016

HART is the First U.S. Transit Agency to Launch the Trip Planner Feature of OneBusAway!


With the July 25th release of a new dynamic trip planning feature, OneBusAway Tampa is now a one-stop shop for HART real-time travel information!

Customers will now be able to plan their trip and see how close their bus is in real-time, all via a single application!

Plan your HART trip in real-time!
HART is the first U. S. transit agency to launch the trip planner feature of OneBusAway and third in the nation to launch OneBusAway.  The service has shattered expectations with 208 million hits in a 12 month period.

To use the new feature, riders must do the following:
  1. Click the menu bar in the upper left-hand corner
  2. Select the option to "Plan A Trip"
  3. Type in the departing location (From:), the arriving location (To:), also the time and date. Then, your trip will be planned.
The OneBusAway Trip Planner will display 3 bus route options, with each option giving the next departure time closest to the intended time you wish to travel, along with the travel time.

What makes the Trip Planner... "dynamic"?

The trip planner will notify you via the app if the end time of your selected trip has changed by at least 2 minutes, or if your selected trip plan is no longer recommended.

Dynamic Trip Planner alerts you if your trip is no longer recommended

OneBusAway Tampa helps riders save time, effort, and stress and provides reassurance regarding the arrival time of their bus. The real-time service has shattered expectations with 208 million hits in a 12 month period.

Stay tuned, as HART continues to bring you more, with less!