World-Class City Have Transportation Options

Major cities are experiencing unprecedented population growth, exacerbating their already substantial problems in providing essential services. This volume draws on the significant advances in technologies and management strategies made in recent decades to suggest ways to improve urban life and services. One of the biggest challenges world-class cities face is how to address transportation to stay competitive in the twenty-first century.

Rapid growth in demand for motorized transport has overwhelmed the transport capacity of cities all over the world. Therefore, reducing congestion has become a central element of economic growth. Less congestion means lower automobile emissions and air pollution. The best cities in the world offer a wide range of options to accommodate mobility.

However, providing different transportation alternatives to get people from one place to another is not the only reason cities try to diversify their public transportation systems. People have different needs and preferences that usually cannot be satisfied by only one transportation option, no matter how great, cost-efficient, and comfortable the transportation system will be. Therefore, major cities need to provide several transportation options to address residents’ mobility needs and preferences.

Tampa Bay is an excellent example of how a region manages to accommodate multiple transportation options to reduce the overall congestion and provide alternatives to locals to address their travel behaviors.

 There are several transportation options that will get you from point A to point B in Tampa’s urban core without getting in your own car.

 Top 8 ways to get around in Tampa are:

  • TECO Line Streetcar
  • Coast Bikes
  • Scooters
  • HART Bus
  • Pirate Water Taxi
  • Zipcar (hourly car rentals)
  • Downtowner (free app-based on-demand shuttle)
  • Cross-Bay Ferry

Downtown is Tampa Bay’s central transportation hub, with several options available throughout the week and weekend. 

 Transportation options outside of downtown are less diverse, however, the City of Tampa aims to provide several mobility options to satisfy residents’ preferences and continues to work on improving the options available.

 When it comes to transportation choices, people generally do what is best for themselves. Understanding what factors influence people’s decisions can help the transportation industry and advocates better show the benefits of different transportation options and address different motivations components.

 People choose a certain transportation option based on what is most convenient, in terms of price, time, proximity, and flexibility. Some people prefer to take public roads and may spend some time sitting in traffic, while others prefer to pay a toll if it gets them to their destination faster. 

The Lee Roy Selmon Expressway is a vivid example of a convenient mobility solution provided by THEA. The 15-mile all-electronic toll roadway serves as an important alternative route to I-275 during road closures and back-ups and provides a regional connection between Downtown Tampa and other major population centers in Tampa Bay. Using the Selmon Expressway not only saves you some time spent in daily commuting but also guarantees a safe route to reach your destination. And with all-electronic tolling, emissions are reduced versus time spent idling.

Tampa is a world-class city that encourages walking, bike riding, skating, and enjoying healthy outdoor activities. These transportation choices are the most beneficial to cities and individuals because they help alleviate traffic and reduce automobile emissions. 

For commuters who prefer to bike or walk to work, the Selmon Greenway is a world-class urban trail with wide sidewalks and safe crosswalks. Selmon Greenway is an excellent example of how local organizations can pool their resources to greatly impact the community in a positive way. THEA manages the greenway and works with city partners to continually improve the path to meet the needs of the growing downtown population.

Floridians have been showing a growing interest in walking and biking over the past few years. Therefore, THEA, as a proud community leader in Tampa Bay decided it was important to accommodate those preferences and create wide sidewalks for walking and biking on both sides of Meridian Avenue. 

More transportation options, like Rapid Bus Transit, extension of the HART bus lines, and autonomous vehicle routes are emerging as viable options in the years ahead. This along with the shared, electric, toll, bike lanes, and greenways will ensure that Tampa continues to attract residents who share the desire to live in an integrated and connected community.