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PSTA to Unveil Driverless Bus in St. Petersburg

AVA | Autonomous Bus | PSTA

AVA – for autonomous vehicle advantage – will undergo a three-month trial in St. Petersburg.

ST. PETERSBURG – The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority will unveil its first driverless bus Monday (Nov. 23) in St. Petersburg.

The autonomous vehicle – AVA – will begin a three-month trial along St. Petersburg’s downtown waterfront. The trial will be used to gather comments from riders and others in the community about the possibility of using autonomous vehicles as a future transit option in Pinellas County.

PSTA has partnered with Beep for the trial period, which will run 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday starting this Wednesday (Nov. 25) and running through Feb. 15. The route will connect riders  to attractions, from the Dali Museum to the Vinoy Renaissance. Rides will be free for the duration of the trial.

Similar to PSTA’s policy, passengers and attendants onboard AVA are always required to wear a mask. Beep has implemented several processes and procedures in light of COVID-19. AVA’s copilots undergo a temperature check before the start of every shift and are required to wear masks when on board.

Disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer stations are available on AVA for copilots and passengers to use. Passengers should use the hand sanitizer before boarding AVA and buckle their seatbelts. PSTA has enhanced our cleaning procedures while AVA is in service and at the end of the day. Seating capacity on shuttles has also been reduced. Passengers will notice a color-coding system onboard to provide visual cues where related passengers, unrelated passengers, and wheelchair companions should sit.

For information about AVA, go to


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