Forward Pinellas works with the Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority (TBARTA) to promote commute alternatives to single occupant vehicle travel, which represents nearly 80 percent of all vehicles on the State’s roadways during peak hours of travel. These alternatives include carpools, vanpools, transit, teleworking and compressed/flexible work weeks.
Regarding transit, the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) is the primary public transportation provider in Pinellas County. The main objective of PSTA’s fixed route system is to provide affordable transportation that connects people to their places of employment, recreation areas, tourist destinations and shopping locations. In addition to serving the general public, PSTA plays an important role in serving the transportation needs of the disadvantaged population.
In their role as the Community Transportation Coordinator, PSTA also manages the state-funded Transportation Disadvantaged (TD) Program, which provides low-cost, non-emergency transportation throughout Pinellas County to individuals who qualify as “transportation disadvantaged.” To be qualified, a person must have no means of transportation, including family and friends, and an income no greater than 150 percent of the federal poverty level. With unlimited use bus passes, TD Program customers can receive transportation to anywhere a bus can take them for a reduced fee of $11 for a 31-day pass and $5 for a 10-day pass. For those unable to ride the bus, non-emergency service is provided by taxi cabs and wheelchair accessible vans. The cost is $3 per one-way trip.
Bicyclists can also access PSTA buses through the agency’s Bikes on Buses Program. This program allows riders to mount their bikes on the front of PSTA buses for long distance travel.