Jacksonville, FL (April 2, 2018) — On April 2, 2018 brought new and exciting changes in JTA Bus Route 23 for the Southside area of District 11. JTA public transportation service leaving the Town Center heading south on Gate Parkway was modified. Normally, this service turns west on Deerwood Park Blvd and then South on Southside Blvd heading to Baymeadows Road bypassing the Baymeadows East area. The avoidance of communities and businesses east of Gate Parkway including Oxford Chase, Village Walk, IKEA and Sweetwater were the focus.
It was a letter from constituent Karen Coghlan of the Sweetwater community in October 2016 that first brought the issue to Council Member Becton’s attention and got the ball rolling. The avoidance of the Baymeadows East area was of great concern to Karen as the Sweetwater community being a Del Webb Adult Community 55+ and older, had opportunities for ridership that were great. “Many residents within the Sweetwater community do not drive”, explained Karen. “There are places we want to go and have limited options to get there and public transportation should be available.”
Karen was right, CM Becton explained to JTA. The area of Baymeadows East is growing with new communities like the Southside Quarter, Spyglass, Hacienda Club, Cabana Club, Galleria and the new homes of Old Still providing potential customers. This area is not being served and has the density and needs that JTA should explore. In advocating for this service and having your voice heard, CM Becton stated, “it is exciting to see these changes and services added and come to fruition from great ideas conceived by constituent’s getting done.” “Public involvement is essential to the process and making things like this happen.”
JTA Bus Route 23 ultimately serves the Avenues Mall, Tinseltown, FSCJ South, Regency Mall and Arlington. It also makes connection to Routes 27, 302 and First Coast Flyer Blue Line at the Avenues providing direct service to downtown. Routes 28 and 50 at Baymeadows and Southside, Routes 8 and 28 in the Town Center-Tinseltown area, Routes 8 and 9 at FSCJ South, plus numerous routes (9, 10, 18, 19) at Regency, and Routes 19 and 50 in Arlington all are available upon getting onto the Route 23 service. The hours of operation on this route will generally run from 6am to 9pm, Monday through Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with 16 bus stops in each direction.
Also to be noted, Seniors ride for free, so what is there not to love, let’s make this new Route 23 successful by “riding the bus”, Southsiders!
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