Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART) announced this morning that the one year pilot program for the new Beep shuttle service will begin Monday, Oct. 12.
The new self-driving shuttle, which is free to riders, will offer last mile connections between the TECO Line Streetcar and the Marion Transit Center along North Marion Street, says HART. The new route will include four stops: Marion Transit Center's Bay F, Kennedy Boulevard, Washington Street and Whiting Street, with plans for a future stop at Tampa City Hall.
According to a statement, the shuttle is developed by Orlando-based company Beep, and is 100% electric and costs less than $30 per month to charge. Beep shuttles travel at a maximum speed of 15 mph, have no steering wheel, and use a pre-programmed route, along with eight sensors, which provide a 360-degree view of the environment. An onboard attendant will be present, but only to act as an ambassador.
Passengers will be asked to wear a seatbelt while on board, as well as a face mask.
The program is fully funded by the Florida Department of Transportation, and will last one year with an option for a second.
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