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Tampa - December 2014

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Tampa — Extension Through CBD Considered

December 2014

The Tampa Tribune reports that a price tag has been set for a possible extension of the TECO heritage streetcar line which links downtown Tampa and Ybor City. The cost could be as much as $60 million or as low as $37 million, regardless of the route variation chosen. The article says, "That extension would include improvements required to upgrade the system to accommodate modern streetcars or light rail transit cars."

The Tampa Historic Streetcar Extension Study as sponsored by the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit System considered extending the system north from its current downtown terminal to the Marion Transit Center. The timing of the release fits well with the billion-dollar downtown development vision Jeff Vinik, owner of the Tampa Bay Lightning hockey team, has developed. An improved streetcar line could support the downtown development, and is named in Vinik's plan. That proposal calls for new buildings housing hotels, restaurants, offices, residences, entertainment venues, and University of South Florida's medical school all funded from private sources. Infrastructure improvements, such as the streetcar extension, would be funded from government sources.


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