By Kyle LoJacono
The Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART) 20X express route has been a way for Hillsborough Lutz riders to travel across the region and a recent change will let more Pasco residents do the same.
The 20X route had originated at First Baptist Church of Lutz on Crystal Lake Road, but now begins at the Target Superstore on County Line Road in Lutz.
HART spokeswoman Marcia Mejia said the route was extended north in July based on increased demand. The growth also allows HART to plan for future linkage with Pasco County Public Transportation (PCPT).
“This now gives riders a Pasco connection on the west side of I-75,” Mejia said. “51X provides a bus connection into Pasco County on the east side of I-75.”
Michael Carroll, Pasco public transportation manger, said PCPT and HART have been looking for ways to use each other’s services for some time to help increase connections between the neighboring counties. He said there are no definite plans to stretch Pasco routes into Hillsborough, but PCPT already has routes that connect with the HART lines that come north of the county line.
The 51X express route starts at Victorious Life Church in Wesley Chapel, with several stops in the Pasco town and New Tampa.
PCPT route 33 has a stop at the end of the 51X line that takes people east as far as Zephyrhills. Residents can also take lines north to Dade City and other east Pasco communities.
Mejia said HART’s board looks at adding new stops on its routes, even if that takes the buses into neighboring counties, to best help alleviate traffic and improve public transportation. She added if the need arises, the 20X route could be taken even further north into Land O’ Lakes and other central Pasco communities.
“We always look at how to make the service better,” Mejia said.
For more information on HART, visit www.gohart.org. To learn more about PCPT, visit portal.pascocountyfl.net.
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