A Vision for US 19

A 34-mile highway extending from Tarpon Springs to St. Petersburg, US 19 is the most heavily traveled arterial road in Pinellas County.  It is part of the Florida Strategic Intermodal System (SIS), a statewide network of high-priority transportation facilities, and is served by Route 19, which has the highest ridership of all routes in the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) system.

Since the 1980s, substantial public investment has converted US 19 from an at-grade arterial road to a uninterrupted partially controlled access facility, including overpasses and interchanges, from 49th Street in Pinellas Park to SR 580 in Clearwater. The MPO Long Range Transportation Plan calls for these improvements to continue north of SR 580 to the Pinellas/Pasco County Line.

There has also been substantial investment made toward improving the safety of the corridor, including crosswalk installations, sidewalk construction to close existing gaps along the roadway, median modifications, intersection improvements and wayfinding signs.  Safety remains a serious concern, however, as the highest crash rates in the County continue to be reported at US 19 intersections.  In addition to safety, other major issues afflicting the corridor include lack of accessibility afforded to vulnerable users (e.g., pedestrians, bicyclists and transit users), and the economic impact of the partially controlled access improvements on adjacent businesses. Forward Pinellas and the Florida Department of Transportation focused on pedestrian and bicycle safe access to transit along US 19 in a 2016 study, summarized in this report that includes potential alternatives and strategies.

Through this SPOTlight initiative, Forward Pinellas will work with its local government, agency and community partners to develop a coordinated vision for the corridor.  This vision will serve as the basis for the development of land use and transportation strategies and improvements designed to increase the mobility, safety and accessibility of vulnerable transportation users as well as the economic viability of the corridor.

Project Objectives

  • Create a vision for the future design of US 19 and its adjacent land uses
  • Create safer travel conditions for bicyclists, pedestrians and transit users
  • Improve connectivity of adjacent land uses along the corridor
  • Identify improvements and land use conditions necessary to achieve the vision for the corridor
  • Engage affected citizens and business representatives

Forthcoming Activities

  • Public outreach to discuss corridor needs and issues
  • Set up regional summit to engage Pasco County
  • Conduct a market assessment and economic profile
  • Define policies, strategies and actions
  • Analyze scenarios and identify preferred outcomes
  • Establish coalitions and advisory groups
  • Develop a transit concept plan

Partners

  • Pinellas County
  • PSTA  
  • Pasco County
  • Florida Department of Transportation
  • City of Tarpon Springs
  • City of Dunedin
  • City of Clearwater
  • City of Largo
  • City of Pinellas Park
  • City of St. Petersburg
  • Citizen representatives
  • Business representatives
  • Pinellas County School System
  • St. Petersburg College

Let us know your thoughts on US 19