Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

PSTA agrees to build terminal in Pinellas Park

PINELLAS PARK — Members of the board that oversees bus service in Pinellas County unanimously voted to build a terminal with restrooms at the Shoppes at Park Place.

The decision last week should end the monthslong standoff between the center's owners, Pinellas Park and the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority over public urination and defecation at the bus stop on the 70th Avenue N side of the mall. City and mall officials placed most of the blame on riders who were waiting to transfer but did not have enough time between buses to get to a nearby business.

Pinellas Park council member Patti Johnson, who represents the city on the PSTA board, said she was thrilled.

"I'm jumping up and down on tables," Johnson said. The dispute has "turned into a really great thing for Pinellas Park."

Pinellas Park and the mall's owner, Boulder Venture South, complained to PSTA officials several months ago about the problem. Bus passengers were relieving themselves by a Dumpster near a breezeway next to the multiplex cinemas.

At first, PSTA said it was not responsible for providing restroom facilities for its passengers even though Pinellas Park promised to contribute $100,000 to the construction costs. When no agreement could be reached, the city told PSTA to remove the transit area, which serves as a hub for seven routes, some of the county's longest, and more than 2,000 rides a day.

Bus officials proposed moving the transfer point for some of the routes to the nearby Park Boulevard and 49th Street N intersection. The proposal would have seen passengers scrambling to cross the intersection, one of the Pinellas' busiest and most hazardous, to transfer from one bus to another.

Bus officials also took a second look at the issue and its statistics. With ridership increasing by about 32 percent during the past 10 years, the county's three PSTA customer service terminals have become increasingly crowded. And none of those are in mid Pinellas, where about 20 percent of the riders who use transportation disadvantaged passes live. That meant that about 1,400 people had to ride one or more hours to get to the Clearwater or one of the two St. Petersburg customer service kiosks to get their TD passes.

PSTA officials decided a better solution would be to build a customer service center at the Shoppes at Park Place, 7200 U.S. 19 N, complete with public restrooms. The cost for construction is expected to total about $430,000 but Pinellas Park plans to contribute $100,000 of that. The yearly operating costs are estimated at about $222,000.

Construction is expected to start this fall and be finished by next summer. The new facility will include space for a manned customer service booth where people will be able to buy bus passes, get PSTA materials and official PSTA identification cards.

"This is a great day for our riders," PSTA CEO Brad Miller said. "A facility like this for our midcounty riders has been long overdue."

Anne Lindberg can be reached at or (727) 893-8450.

PSTA agrees to build terminal in Pinellas Park 07/31/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, July 31, 2012 11:42am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Search for missing Army helicopter crew suspended in Hawaii


    HONOLULU — Officials have suspended the search for five Army soldiers who were aboard a helicopter that crashed during offshore training in Hawaii last week.

    Water safety officials hand over possible debris from an Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crash to military personnel stationed at a command center in a harbor, Wednesday in Haleiwa, Hawaii, a day after. an Army helicopter with five on board crashed several miles off Oahu's North Shore. Officials  suspended the search for five Army soldiers in a helicopter crash during offshore training in Hawaii on Monday. [Associated Press]
  2. Rubio praises Trump for 'excellent' speech on Afghanistan


    Sen. Marco Rubio praised President Donald Trump's "excellent" speech on Afghanistan. Sen. Bill Nelson was less effusive but agreed with the goal.

  3. Gov. Rick Scott blasts report of shifting words on Charlottesville


    Gov. Rick Scott, one of the most scripted politicians in modern Florida history, said Monday that "both sides” bear blame for Charlottesville.

  4. Record $417 million awarded in lawsuit linking baby powder to cancer


    LOS ANGELES — A Los Angeles jury on Monday ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay a record $417 million to a hospitalized woman who claimed in a lawsuit that the talc in the company's iconic baby powder causes ovarian cancer when applied regularly for feminine hygiene.

    A bottle of Johnson's baby powder is displayed. On Monday, Aug. 21, 2017, a Los Angeles County Superior Court spokeswoman confirmed that a jury has ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $417 million in a case to a woman who claimed in a lawsuit that the talc in the company's iconic baby powder causes ovarian cancer when applied regularly for feminine hygiene. [Associated Press]
  5. Search under way for missing sailors; Navy chief orders inquiry


    SINGAPORE — The U.S. Navy ordered a broad investigation Monday into the performance and readiness of the Pacific-based 7th Fleet after the USS John S. McCain collided with an oil tanker in Southeast Asian waters, leaving 10 U.S. sailors missing and others injured.

    Damage is visible as the USS John S. McCain steers toward Singapore’s naval base on Monday.