PETERSBURG, Fla. (August 9, 2018)— Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) has selected HCP Associates, Inc. to conduct the organization’s first community sentiment study.
The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) was first established in the early 1900s as the St. Pete Municipal Transit System (SPMTS) with a streetcar line running from St. Petersburg to what is now Gulfport. It has progressed since into a robust transit system serving Pinellas County. The organization operates 210 vehicles, offers 43 routes and has a daily ridership of 39,393. Two of the 43 routes travel to Hillsborough County.
In 2010, new trolley routes were established connecting North County to Clearwater Beach. PSTA added 14 Diesel-Electric Hybrid Buses to their fleet—totaling 24 “SmartBus” vehicles. In 2012, the agency decided to invest in environmentally friendly and fuel-saving hybrid technology; replacing 10 gasoline cars with new Ford Fusion hybrid-electrics. There have been many innovative and environmentally-conscious decisions made throughout the years.
Ridership is continuously growing and setting all-time records year-after-year. Currently, there are surveys conducted that target PSTA riders. Despite continual growth in ridership, many county residents are still not users. In response, PSTA leadership recognized this and therefore expressed a desire for the study to focus on collecting feedback from the base of Pinellas County residents who are not routine users of PSTA services.
As part of the engagement, HCP Associates met with PSTA executives to uncover their thoughts, vision, overall goals for the organization and how they were addressed in the study. HCP worked closely with the Director of Communications and Marketing to manage the study. To execute this project, the methodology included a telephonic survey, which utilized random digit dialing—targeting residents in all areas of the county. HCP analyzed and reported their findings, making recommendations as they saw fit.
“We view this as an important study that should allow senior leadership a broad view of the communities perception of PSTA and the results will help shape how they market future public transportations services,” said Sean Coniglio, Managing Partner of HCP Associates.
The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority’s vision is to be the people’s first choice for transportation and a driving force for social, environmental, and economic vitality in the community through innovation and partnership. Their mission is to safely connect people to places. Understanding behaviors of non-riders helped create benchmarks for how this group views the organization and the efforts it deploys to achieve its mission.
For more information on PSTA, visit: https://www.psta.net/ .