Summary of Services

StarMetro, the public transit service for the City of Tallahassee, operates 15 weekday cross-town routes, including university service for Florida State University (FSU) and student ridership programs for Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University (FAMU), Tallahassee Community College (TCC), and K-12 students in Leon County. StarMetro also provides demand-responsive (paratransit) transportation to senior, disabled and low-income customers in Tallahassee and Leon County. These services are provided 363 days per year and assist in emergencies as needed.


StarMetro has six divisions: Administration, Planning, General Transit Operations, Community Transportation, Garage Facilities, and Special Transportation.


The Administration Division manages all employees and monitors the operating and capital budget. This division handles budget preparation, internal and external audits, and fare collection for the transit system.


The Planning Division provides policy, service development, grant management, and customer outreach. This division has four full-time employees and one or more internship positions. Planning, along with the help of the General Transit Operations Division, continuously reviews and recommends scheduling and route changes as the City develops. The division promotes and develops programs to increase transit revenue and ridership, such as an All-Access Bus Pass program, various marketing campaigns, and service contracts.


The General Transit Operations Division provides accessible transit services to citizens of Tallahassee, visitors, and commuters to Tallahassee through 15 fixed routes.


The Community Transportation division administers the Community Transportation Coordinator (CTC) program. The CTC is responsible for coordinating all transportation services for the transportation-disadvantaged population of Leon County. Services are coordinated for developmentally disabled persons under the Agency for Persons with Disabilities Medicaid Waiver. Transportation Disadvantaged customers are served by the Commission for the Transportation Disadvantaged funds.


The Garage Facilities Division performs cleaning maintenance of StarMetro facilities.


The Special Transportation division provides complimentary paratransit services to disabled persons, in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The Dial-A-Ride program brings this service to Tallahassee and Leon County.


FY22

StarMetro has 146.50 full-time equivalent (FTE) and 54 temporary employees. FTEs in FY22 increased by seven employees who were converted from temporary Other Personnel Services (OPS) to FTE positions, allowing them to receive additional benefits.


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Short-Term Action Plan

2-A-I.4: The Student Transportation for Academics and Responsibilities (STAR) Program is a StarMetro, City of Tallahassee and Leon County Schools - soft launch on April 5th.

4-E-1: In FY21, StarMetro achieved an 88 percent OTP. StarMetro anticipates meeting its target of 90 % before the 2024 horizon.

4-E-2: StarMetro is hopeful that renewed federal investment in public transit infrastructure in the coming years will help move the project forward.

4-E-3: Contracted with George & Associates for community engagement and design. BluePrint and the City of Tallahassee have entered into an agreement to facilitate the purchase of the adjoining property.

Challenges

4-E-2: Complete construction of a multi-modal transportation hub at C.K. Steele Plaza by 2022.


COT/StarMetro may need to work to identify other private partners for this project should it move forward with a P3 arrangement for operating the facility. However, renewed federal investment in public transit facilities, especially promoting the use of “clean energy” may present other financing opportunities. Staff will continue working to identify funding and keep the Executive Team and City Commission apprised.

Long-Term Plan

StarMetro launched its 2021 Major Update, called “Think Transit”, including a Comprehensive Operational Analysis and Transit Development Plan. The campaign includes community outreach and expected completion and publication of documents by Q2 of FY 2022.

StarMetro is also working to identify grant funding to enhance its daily operations, upgrade existing physical and technological infrastructure, as well as construct new facilities. StarMetro is working closely with Fleet Management to convert all fleet vehicles to electric by 2035.

4-E-2: Complete construction of a multi-modal transportation hub at C.K. Steele Plaza by 2022.

C.K. Steele Plaza was constructed in 1986 and named after the Civil Rights activist Charles Kenzie Steele, who organized the Tallahassee Bus Boycotts in the 1950s. The Plaza is located in the heart of Downtown Tallahassee at the intersection of West Tennessee Street and Adams Street. It serves as a central transfer point for riders on each of StarMetro’s fixed routes and is a critical piece of the City’s transit system infrastructure.


As the community grows, so will the demand and desire for more modern, accessible public transit amenities and options. In response, the City has committed to complete the construction of a multimodal transportation hub at C.K. Steele Plaza by 2022. Multimodal transportation hubs provide greater access to public transportation options by integrating other transportation options at a single point such as walking, bicycling and other services such as the e-scooter services currently housed at C.K. Steele Plaza [1]. Transportation hubs also increase the use of public transportation. Thus, the C.K. Steele Plaza redevelopment will advance the City's commitment to increase the percentage of residents using alternative modes of transportation to and from work and increase StarMetro's on-time performance to 90%.


Planning for the C.K. Steele redevelopment is already underway, with design and engineering scheduled to be complete in 2021. Funding for the redevelopment will be generated through local, state, federal and private sources. StarMetro is discussing possible private partnerships and is conducting research of similarly funded, public-private partnerships that include transit facilities in nearby municipalities.

4-E-3: Complete construction of the South City Transit Center by 2022.

While C.K. Steele Plaza has historically been the primary nexus of the City’s mass transit system, a significant portion of StarMetro ridership lives and works in the South City area of Tallahassee. To further enhance the accessibility and convenience of the City’s mass transit to residents in this area, the City of Tallahassee is constructing a new South City Transit Center (SCTC) on the northwest corner of Orange Avenue and Meridian Street. The proposed site for the future SCTC was recently converted from an abandoned property into a temporary park. The SCTC will include a waiting area for bus riders, office space, an information booth and a place to charge electric buses.


The SCTC will serve as a public transportation hub strengthening south side neighborhoods, as well as enhancing citizens’ mobility and connectivity throughout Tallahassee. The site of the SCTC is situated within the Orange-Meridian Placemaking Project area, which includes stormwater improvements to the north and stormwater pond beautification to the south. These projects will work in conjunction with efforts at the SCTC site for stormwater and other related infrastructure needs.

In fiscal years 2020 and 2021, the City will work with the Florida Department of Transportation and a consultant to conduct an environmental analysis of the property, as well as design services and community engagement.