RS&H provided environmental analysis, site design and permitting, architectural design, and landscape architecture services for the design of the Marion Transit Center, which sits on 1.23 acres just north of Tampa, Florida’s, vibrant downtown core. RS&H also provided bid-phase support and construction assistance.
The transit center’s hourglass shape, along with its trellis-covered walkways, allow for short walks between buses and shelter from sun and rain. We designed the canopy as a garden arbor and included planter walls throughout the site with ample seating. Using mosaics of small, brilliantly colored porcelain tiles, artist Elizabeth Indianos created two oversized hibiscus flowers in a sea of blue for the center’s courtyard. The designs are echoed on the clock tower by a combination of tiles and hand painting and by an even larger floral concrete overlay design set into the floor of the customer service lobby.
The creation of this center is a pivotal step in the future development of the northern area of Tampa’s Central Business District. With the completion of the center, the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART) intends to change the conception of what a bus facility can mean, not only to its customers but also to its community.
Conceived as an “oasis for transit users,” Marion Transit Center is built with the comfort and convenience of transit patrons as a priority. Over 3,800 passengers a day pass through the transit center’s trellis-covered walkways. Curving planters create individual seating areas for each of the 14 bus bays. Regal palm trees, flowering shade trees, and colorful annuals all contribute to a garden-like atmosphere within the facility.
Marion Transit Center is situated just north of Tampa’s thriving downtown. Its location served as a key inspiration for many design elements. Arbor-covered walkways provide shelter from intense sun and rain. Mosaic floral patterns celebrate central Florida’s year-round growing season and subtropical environment. Sundials are tuned to the exact latitude and longitude of the project site.
From the outset, our team was convinced that the transit center should be much more than a utilitarian transfer point between buses. It should truly enhance the public realm. The design shows that public projects can play an important role in uplifting and inspiring the community.