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County Seeking Grant Funds for New Bus Stop at First Step Homeless Shelter.

Wed, Mar 17, 2021 at 10:25AM

Written by Kristen Schmutz

Belden Communications News



During Tuesday’s County Council meeting, the Council unanimously voted to apply to the Florida Department of Transportation for a $56,000 transit grant for a funding source to pay for a new bus stop to serve the First Step Homeless Shelter.

The funds, from the grant, would be enough to pay for the construction and development of a new Votran bus stop shelter and sidewalk on the south side of International Speedway Boulevard just outside the shelter.

A bus stop already exists on the same side of the street, about a half-mile east of the shelter.

There has been a push to build another bus stop closer to the facility after one of the shelter’s residents was struck and killed back on January 25 while crossing International Speedway Boulevard trying to catch a Votran bus.

Bobbie King, Community Services Operations Manager assigned to Votran, praised the county’s partnership with the Department of Transportation that has brought plans for the new bus stop a step closer to reality.

“I’m very happy to bring this item to you today,” King told County Council members. “They were an excellent partner in this situation.”

“This is such a good thing,” added County Councilwoman Billie Wheeler.

Several members of the shelter’s board were on hand at Tuesday’s County Council meeting to lend their support.

“I want you to know that the staff and the residents are very excited about this and we appreciate you,” said board member Rose Ann Tornatore.

County officials have been working to educate shelter staff on Votran’s routes and schedules and the best ways for their residents to utilize the system. FDOT conducted a study to determine if other safety measures are necessary. The results of the study should be available soon.

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