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Caitlin Johnston - Breaking News Reporter — Transportation

Breaking News Reporter — Transportation

I write about transportation, a subject that affects all of us as we navigate our busy lives. I let you know how new projects will impact your commute and quality of life, while also dissecting complex policies and budgets. My work takes me from bus stops to government meetings to sitting in mind-numbing traffic jams. I’m a proud Hoosier, a slow runner, and a lover of mountains. I studied journalism and political science at Indiana University and earned my master’s at the University of Maryland. I joined the Times in 2012, first covering breaking news in Tampa and east Hillsborough. I attend 9-hour meetings and read traffic studies from the 1960s so you didn’t have to. I’m always looking for story ideas.

  1. Florida's five Supreme Court justices listen to oral arguments Feb. 5 in a case challenging the validity of Hillsborough's transportation tax. From left: Alan Lawson, Ricky Polston, Chief Justice Charles Canady, Jorge Labarga and Carlos Muñiz.
  2. Construction continues on the Gateway Expressway project on 118th Ave N on Jan. 26 in Pinellas Park where a flyover bridge has been designed to connect the expressway to US 19.
  3. Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority Chief Executive Officer Adelee Le Grand listens during a board meeting Monday at Hillsborough County Center. Le Grand announced Thursday she was replacing the agency's interim chief financial officer.
  4. Masked people walk past bars in Ybor City the week before the Super Bowl on Wednesday in Tampa.
  5. Construction is nearing completion on toll gates at the westbound entrance to the Selmon Extension, the 1.9-mile toll lanes running along the median of Gandy Boulevard in South Tampa.
  6. A rendering from WSP Engineering shows what a potential neighborhood station could look like for a 41-mile bus rapid transit line connecting Pasco, Hillsborough and Pinellas counties.
  7. Bus riders get off a Hart bus at the University Area Transit Center on Wednesday, June 19, 2019, in Tampa.  LUIS SANTANA   |   Times
  8. "Cover Ur Face B4 U Ride" reads a sign on a No. 9 Pinellas transit authority bus, stopped in May along the 200 block of 5th Ave N.
  9. A man is seen on surveillance footage at a Pinellas Park gas station using a stolen credit card. The man is believed to have stolen a woman's car at PetSmart earlier that day.
  10. From left and walking forward members of the St. Pete Youth Farm: Anaya Graham, 15, Jade Hinton, 16 and Makai Smith, 14 carry soil on their MLK Day of Service on Monday January 18, 2021. The students were part of a contingent of volunteers brought together to continue the work associated with building out the urban farm located on property just behind the Enoch Davis Center in St. Petersburg, Fl.
  11. The Howard Frankland Bridge will close to all traffic starting at 8 p.m. Saturday.
  12. Two receipts show the current Hillsborough County sales tax, which includes a 1 percent transportation levy that went into effect Jan. 1, 2019. None of the money has been spent.
  13. A family crosses North Ashley Drive on Tyler Street, along the stretch of Ashley that delivers Interstate 275 traffic into the heart of downtown Tampa.
  14. Guests line up to board the Cross Bay Ferry docked at the Tampa Convention Center in November.
  15. A car barely makes the light in the southbound lanes of U.S. 19. Pinellas County received a grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation to use technology to make intersections safer throughout the county, including along U.S. 19.
  16. Adam Christian Johnson, 36, was booked Friday night into the Pinellas County Jail where he is being held on a federal arrest warrant. Johnson is accused of being the pro-Trump protester seen carrying the lectern of U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi through the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol Building after a pro-Trump mob stormed the building on Jan. 6.
  17. A planned closure of the Howard Frankland bridge was postponed.
  18. The grounds of the annual Florida Strawberry Festival figure into proposals for returning public bus routes to Plant City.
  19. Ava, a free autonomous shuttle, runs along scenic Bayshore Drive in St. Petersburg, connecting some of downtown's most popular attractions.
  20. Lanes are blocked by cones in August as construction crews work at the north end of the Howard Frankland Bridge in Tampa. The Florida Department of Transportation added new lanes to the bridge approach.
  21. A sleek streetcar moving through downtown Tampa adorns the cover of a proposal to build a line to the airport.
  22. Cars and trucks drive through the West Shore interchange on Wednesday. The interchange, which connects some of the region's most vital roads, was due for a rebuild and additional lanes, but those changes will now be delayed due to impacts of COVID-19 on the state budget.
  23. A view of the new Selmon Expressway Extension on Thursday, looking northeast towards Tampa. Construction crews installed the last concrete segment Monday and opening, delayed by the impact of coronavirus, is now projected for next summer.