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PSTA Chooses Contractor to Build First Bus Rapid Transit System in Tampa Bay

SunRunner | PSTA | Bus Rapit Transit

The $43.93-million project will be paid for with a combination of monies from federal, state, county and the city of St. Petersburg. Construction of the SunRunner is expected to be complete in early 2022.  

PINELLAS COUNTY – The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority board of directors unanimously voted today (July 29) to approve a contract with David Nelson Construction to build Tampa Bay’s first bus rapid transit system.

“We are very excited to be working with David Nelson Construction for this world-class project,” said Joe Barkley, chair of the PSTA Board. “Especially with their reputation of helping to build Tampa Bay.”

PSTA CEO Brad Miller said, “Keeping dollars local is essential and David Nelson Construction has proven time and time again in our region that they are up to the task to complete this innovative system. We cannot wait to begin breaking ground with them to bring this service to our community.”

The BRT, or the SunRunner, will connect St. Petersburg to the county’s beaches. The line will feature semi-dedicated lanes, limited stops and safety enhancements for riders including level boarding platforms.  The 10.3-mile line will include 16 stops with buses running every 15 minutes taking you from downtown to the beach or vice versa in less than 35 minutes.

“Nelson Construction is extremely excited to be a part of this groundbreaking project that will connect downtown St. Pete to the Beaches,” said Jeff Nelson, of David Nelson Construction Co. “This elevated level of service by PSTA is going to greatly improve the connectivity in our community and we can’t wait to get started.”

Over the past 15 years, David Nelson Construction has worked with the Florida Department of Transportation as well as with many cities and counties within the Tampa Bay Region. Roadway projects of all sizes, including widening of to and a half miles of I-275 in Tampa, reconstruction of two miles of SR 54 in Pasco County and four miles of Keystone Road in Pinellas County.

Nelson Construction has also completed site work for numerous projects for commercial retail, schools and hospitals, city streetscapes and parks, and major runway paving and repair projects for Tampa International Airport and MacDill Air Force Base.

The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Transit Administration announced Tuesday (July 28) a $21.8 million grant to PSTA for the SunRunner project. The federal money comes from FTA’s Capital Investment Grant program. This grant combined with a grant from the FDOT New Starts Program and Design Grant and ontributions made by the city of St. Petersburg and PSTA will fund the entire project, estimated at $43.93 million.

Construction of the SunRunner is expected to be complete in early 2022.


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