A self-driving vehicle is now providing rides in downtown Tampa


A self-driving car has arrived Tampa and hits the streets of downtown this week. The latest addition to Tampa’s public transit scene is an autonomous vehicle program courtesy of the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority.

HART has teamed up with the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to make getting around Downtown Tampa easier was made available to fund an Autonomous Vehicle Circulator Service between Marion Transit Center to Downtown Tampa along the low speed, controlled access, Marion Street Transitway.

RELATED: Largest pumpkin in Florida arrives in Tampa — and it’s 989 pounds

This project is one of the first of its kind in the U.S. using autonomous technology and has the potential to become a genuine problem solver.

With more typical bus service improvements underway, these autonomous vehicles can help solve those tricky first-mile, last-mile challenges to get transit riders even closer to the door of their destination.

After facing some delays, the Pilot Program is finally ready to launch in Downtown Tampa.

RELATED: Tampa Treasures: Nicola’s Donuts, a local institution since 1982

The year-long pilot project features a single Navya vehicle capable of transporting uptown 15 passengers at one time, including those with reduced mobility. 

The clean transportation solution operates for 9 hours on a single charge.

The free service is currently operating Monday – Friday from 6am-10am, and 3pm-7pm. The shuttle operates between the Marion Transit Center and Fort Brooke Station, just 100 ft. from the FREE TECO Line Streetcar, providing connection to historic Ybor City.

RELATED: Slap Yo Mama Food Truck makes the best lemon pepper wings in Florida

Do you plan to use the service when it launches? 

Follow HART on Facebook for more transportation updates.

Written by Andrew Harlan

Andrew Harlan

Andrew Harlan is the Editor of thatssotampa.com. Follow him on Twitter @harlanyoungII and Instagram @harlanyoung. Send tips and potential stories to info@thatssotampa.com.