Author Topic: JTA Receives $17 million Federal Grant for First Coast Flyer East Corridor  (Read 1374 times)

KenFSU

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Pretty big news.

I think this route is going to be extremely popular.

And personally, I'm hyped for it. Directly connects my house (a 2-minute walk to the Hodges station) to both my office (downtown) and the beach.

Quote
http://news.wjct.org/post/jta-gets-169m-federal-grant-downtown-jacksonville-beach-route

JTA Receives $17 million Federal Grant for First Coast Flyer East Corridor

A big piece of the Jacksonville Transportation Authority’s funding puzzle has been approved to help pay for another phase of JTA’s rapid transit plan.

A $16.9 million capital investment grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration will be used to help build out the First Coast Flyer’s East Corridor, also known as the Red Line.

Like other First Coast Flyer routes, the extension will provide faster and more frequent bus transit for commuters. This one will run from downtown to Jacksonville Beach.

The project has a total estimated cost of $33.9 million, with funding coming from a variety of sources.

The East Corridor, which will be the longest corridor in the First Coast Flyer network, will include transit signal priority at 32 intersections.  The priority system holds green lights, allowing buses to move through intersections without stopping.

The Flyer extension will have 21 branded stations. The line will have fewer stops and offer 10-minute frequency during weekday peak hours and 15-minute frequency in weekday off peak hours.

"This added means of transportation between downtown and the beaches enhances our economic and cultural opportunities while improving safety and efficiency,” said Congressman John Rutherford, R-FL4, in a statement.

The Red Line will feature 19 buses running on compressed natural gas that include free Wi-Fi and mobile ticketing and is scheduled to launch in December.

“The First Coast Flyer initiative has already transformed travel in the Northeast Florida region with the Green and Blue Lines which were launched in December 2015 and December 2016 respectively,” said JTA Chief Executive Officer Nathaniel Ford in a statement.

The Red Line will run between the Rosa Parks Transit Station and Jacksonville Beach along the Arlington Expressway and Beach Boulevard with stops at major destinations, including Florida State College Jacksonville South.

The First Coast Flyer system is part of a larger overall  modernization of JTA.

The JTA is also testing a variety of autonomous vehicles over the next two years with a goal of eventually replacing and expanding the existing Skyway system.

Construction is also underway for a new transit hub and JTA headquarters in LaVilla, across the street from the Prime Osborn Convention Center.

The first phase of that project – the new Greyhound bus terminal – is currently scheduled to open in early April.

The second phase is expected to be completed in early 2020.

KenFSU

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Here are the stations.

Hopefully JTA finds a way to incorporate some kind of a feeder system into and out of the Town Center, UNF, and Deerwood Park/Tinsenltown/Tapestry Park.

« Last Edit: March 07, 2018, 03:23:58 PM by KenFSU »

BenderRodriguez

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JTA has really been knocking it out of the park with receiving grants lately. Am I missing some new rule change? Just doing some quick napkin math, it looks like they've collected over $100mm in the last 5 years, alone.

thelakelander

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I believe this was in the works for a while....like back in the Obama administration days. Here's a story we posted a few months back:

https://www.moderncities.com/article/2017-nov-jta-ready-to-expand-bus-rapid-transit-to-jax-beach

Here's the other link I was looking for that will provide a little more detail:

https://www.transit.dot.gov/sites/fta.dot.gov/files/FL-Jacksonville-First-Coast-Flyer-East-Corridor-FY-18-Profile.pdf
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

Lostwave

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Except it isn't BRT.  Its just a bus with WiFi.

thelakelander

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True, it's BRT-lite but overall it's an improvement over what's available today.
"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali

KenFSU

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Except it isn't BRT.  Its just a bus with WiFi.

It's 1,000% better than what's currently there.

10-minute headways with real-time arrival info.

Wifi.

Minimal stops with some degree of signal prioritization.

Reliably and directly connecting people with actual destinations.

By the end of 2019, the First Coast Flyer will connect everything from the beach, to downtown, to Regency, to the Avenues and Orange Park malls, to Five Points and Brooklyn, etc.

It's a huge improvement.

It's still a bus, it still has to sit in the same traffic as everyone else, but it's still a quality of life win for Jacksonville, particularly those without cars, with handicaps, too young to drive, or of a lower socioeconomic status who are separated from job centers.

Once the final legs are completed and the Regional Transportation Center is opened, I hope JTA ups their marketing game and really does angle the system as an alternative to driving. Like I said, I'd much rather spend 40 minutes on a bus being productive while stuck in traffic than spend 30 minutes in my car, screaming at the same traffic.

KenFSU

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Was driving down Beach yesterday and work appears to have started on some of the stations for the East Corridor.

December 2018 remains the target for the new line to open.