JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Acting Administrator Carolyn Flowers today joined other local officials to celebrate the opening of a new Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) service in Jacksonville. The Southeast Corridor BRT line will provide more frequent and faster bus service to attract new riders and provide a needed transportation option in a heavily transit-dependent region.
“Transit plays a critical role in connecting Americans to economic opportunity – that’s true in Florida and around the country,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “JTA’s new Southeast Corridor BRT line will strengthen and revitalize the communities it serves along Phillips Highway, connect residents of Jacksonville to education and jobs, and improve quality of life in the region.”
The 11.1-mile Southeast Corridor line is the third segment of a five-phased First Coast Flyer BRT system planned for the Jacksonville area. The project will connect to the first BRT line in downtown Jacksonville, which opened last year, and provide enhanced access to southeast corridor employment centers, schools, Baptist Health and St. Luke’s Hospital, retail destinations and recreational activities.
“By expanding its BRT system, Jacksonville is building its transit future for a fast growing population and making a smart investment to support local and regional economic development,” said FTA Acting Administrator Flowers. “The Southeast Corridor BRT will make a huge difference for the majority of local residents along the corridor who do not have access to automobiles and rely heavily on public transportation to get to work, school, medical care and other vital services.”
The FTA is contributing $19.1 million (80 percent) of the $23.8 million total cost of the Southeast Corridor project. The remaining project costs are being covered by the Florida Department of Transportation and the Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA).
The Southeast Corridor project will feature transit signal priority, real-time passenger information, off-board fare collection and a new park-and-ride lot.
JTA estimates that the entire BRT system—to include an 18.5-mile East Corridor and 12.9-mile Southwest Corridor project— will cover 57 miles and cost approximately $151.8 million.