Tampa Airport’s Phase 1 Completed
By Kai Rambow
After more than two years, major improvements at the Tampa airport are open. SkyConnect is a monorail type train running from the main terminal to economy parking and then to the new car rental center.
A car rental center might just appear to be an addition, but involves much more. The new, much larger space now allows for double the number of car rental companies on site for a total of sixteen.
More importantly, the new center reduces traffic at the main terminal. A visitor would fly in, rent a car and drive away from the main terminal. When returning the visitor would return to the terminal. Then a car jockey would drive the car to be cleaned for the next rental. And finally, the jockey would return the clean car for the next renter. A total of four traffic interactions for each car, now take place away from the main terminal.
Once you know the new system, it’s fairly easy to navigate and pretty efficient. Here are some tips to help you:
(1) If you’re using your favorite off-site parking, this won’t impact you at all.
(2) If you use economy parking, you’re best to park in either gold (yellow) or orange. Take the elevator to the first floor, then walk to the elevators for the trains. Those elevators will take you to the top floor. Note: trains stop in the center section, so check above the doors to see you’re standing in the right spot to board.
Be sure to either sit or hold on: the train moves very quickly. Once at the main terminal, take the escalators or elevators down. You’re now on the departures level, which means you can head straight to your gate if you have your boarding pass and no luggage to check. If you need to check in/check luggage, you’ll still need to head one level down.
(3) If you have visitors coming and they are renting a car, they will need to board the train and ride it for two stops to reach the new car rental center. As soon as they exit the train, rental counters are right there. When they return, they can check flight times, get their boarding passes and check luggage at the car rental center.
More restaurants have been moved to the airside terminals, so passengers have more choices close to their departure gates. What you might notice is that 40 percent of the restaurants are local. If you fly Southwest, there is an actual beer distillery in that terminal.
As a regular traveler through Tampa, the airport has skillfully kept the things that make it so easy to travel in and out of, and successfully made changes to cope with growth.
Local Lookalikes Run With the HemingwaysBy Kai Rambow “Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.” – Ernest Hemingway“There might have been some alcohol involved,” recalled Gary Mull. Mull...
Community Expo Showcases ER at Sun City CenterBy Bob Sanchez The ER at Sun City Center hosted a Community Expo to show off the brand-new facility to the public. The free-standing building is an extension of Manatee Memorial Hospital....
5th Annual SCC Relay for Life Surpasses Goal By Bob Sanchez The 5th annual SCC Mini-Relay for Life drew hundreds to St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church on July 29 to raise money in the fight against cancer. The event raised $16,757.39, easily...
In this issue… Learn how volunteers here and abroad are helping Ukrainian refugees, meet some local teens investing in our community, catch the raptor show at the Florida Aquarium, celebrate our Independence, raise a nesting pole with the...
Newly out-planted mountainous star coral (Orbicella faveolata) are growing in Biscayne National Park (BNP). This important act of conservation is a direct result of a partnership between The Florida Aquarium and Biscayne National Park. As an important...
In this issue… Save the date for SCCCA Family Fun Day, welcome Jeff Parsons to the SCCCA Board, enjoy the beauty of local nesting birds, celebrate a truly great photo exhibit, catch up on local road improvements, remember our veterans as we...