Document Type

Technical Report

Publication Date



Community-Based Public Transportation, Public, Transportation, Sun City, Florida, metropolitan areasa


Many retirement communities are located outside of metropolitan areas. Their locations complicate the issue of providing public transportation services to their residents. Sun City Center is an unincorporated retirement community 16 miles outside of Tampa, Florida. A community-based needs assessment was conducted to provide the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HARTline) and the community of Sun City Center with information regarding the perceived public transportation needs that exist in this retirement community.

The three objectives of this community-based needs assessment were: (1) to assess the perceived transportation needs of the local residents; (2) to facilitate greater communication and coordination among HARTline, social service agencies, and local residents; and (3) to create a map showing primary traffic generators and attractors, housing centers, and existing public transportation routes.

Community-based needs assessments are conducted to obtain current data about the community, the people within it, and their needs. Thus, the methods employed in the study concentrated on citizen input. Participant observation was conducted in the community in order to observe day-to-day activity. Key informants were interviewed to elicit insight into how the various organizations perceive community transportation issues and needs. Focus groups were conducted with residents to examine personal transportation needs and perceived community needs. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) was utilized to map major traffic generators and attractors, housing locations, and bus routing information.

The results obtained in this study indicate that a need exists for more public transportation services and/or expansion of existing service in the area. The data indicate that the majority of travel need is local. At this point, a local financial commitment needs to be made in order to implement additional local service.

Citation / Publisher Attribution

A Community-Based Public Transportation Needs Assessment for Sun City Center, Florida, University of South Florida, 29 p.