Public transit officials are granting free rides to northern Pinellas County passengers of three new bus routes for the kick-off month beginning Dec. 10.
Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) will offer the free rides through the end of the month.
On Tuesday, officials celebrate the launch of the North County Connector service during a ribbon cutting ceremony at the Shoppes at Boot Ranch in Palm Harbor. The North County Connectors will serve outlying north county residents trying to reach the main Pinellas bus routes, connecting to Pasco County Public Transit and HART.
How it works:
The connector picks up riders from in Dunedin, Palm Harbor, East Lake, Tarpon Springs and Oldsmar within a three-quarter-mile radius from PSTA's fixed routes (with some flexibility).
Riders must make reservations at least two hours in advance Monday through Saturday between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. The reservations are accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis, according to PSTA plans.
The Connectors operate Monday through Friday, hourly between 6:30 a.m. and 6 p.m., and hourly on Saturdays between 9 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. The fare structure is the same as the PTSA bus system.
The three flex routes are:
- Dunedin / Palm Harbor Connector will operate between Westfield Countryside Mall and U.S. 19/Alderman (Walmart) primarily via State Route 580 / Main Street, downtown Dunedin, County Road 1. It will connect to PSTA routes 19, 62, 67, 76, 78 and the Countryside / Oldsmar / Tampa Connector route.
- East Lake Connector will operate between Tampa Road/East Lake Boulevard to Tarpon Mall where connections can be made on PSTA Route 19 and 66 and PCPT Route 19. Connections to PSTA Route 62 and the Countryside/Oldsmar/Tampa Connector are available at the Shoppes of Boot Ranch.
- Countryside / Oldsmar / Tampa Connector will operate between Westfield Countryside Mall and the HART Northwest Transfer Center. Route will provide connections to PSTA routes 19, 62, 67, 76 ,78 and the Dunedin/Palm Harbor 17 Connector at Westfield and HART routes 16, 30, 34, 39, 61LX and Town & Country Flex at the HART Northwest Transfer Center. Route 30 serves Tampa International Airport.
- More Bus Service Options Coming to Dunedin