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USF graduate, urban designer envisions alternative to 'TBX Next'

Josh Frank wrote USF thesis on alternative
Posted: 4:51 PM, Jul 28, 2017
Updated: 2017-07-28 20:59:07Z

The USF Graduate's ideas are the complete opposite of our typical raised interstates-- and he says would connect neighborhoods instead of divide them.

His vision is a creative alternative to ‘TBX Next.’

"If Tampa wants to become LA or Atlanta where it's just, you know, congestion and that style of city, then this isn't the sort of project for them,” said Urban Designer Josh Frank.

28-year-old Josh Frank is a local urban designer who wrote a graduate thesis on the topic at the University of South Florida.

Renderings bring it to life-- 6 lanes of at-grade traffic replacing I-275 interstate with room for a mass transit option and more commercial development.

"It allows you to actually have safer, more open, well lit, active spaces, and right now the interstate has these dark tunnels for all these cross streets and they're really unsafe,” said Frank.

The design is what other cities like Portland, Oregon have done-- re-imagining walkable, bikeable, urban spaces from downtown to USF including the Sulphur Springs area instead of a bisecting highway.

"The Boulevard does the opposite. It allows for a lot of new avenues for people to get from one side to the other,” said Frank.

Frank has presented the alternative design to Florida Department of Transportation officials. Next, he says he'll take it to the Metropolitan Planning Organization.

"It's going to take a lot of entities and agencies working together in a way that maybe hasn't really ever been done in this area before so it's a big challenge,” he said.