TAMPA, FL (WFLA) — Traffic is expected to be heavier than normal this weekend in and around downtown Tampa due to the Gasparilla Distance Classic road races. Drivers and pedestrians alike are advised to allow for extra travel time and to travel through the area with caution.
Registration for the races will be on Friday at the Tampa Convention Center. There will be a large influx of vehicles associated with this activity, especially between 4:00-8:00 p.m. A free shuttle will be operating from the Royal Regional Parking lot ($2.00 parking fees will apply) to the Tampa Convention Center for the 8 on Your Side Health & Fitness Expo beginning at 4:00 p.m. on Friday, February 19th only.
The races begin on Saturday, February 20 at 6:45 a.m. and street closures will begin at 3 a.m. The following roads will be affected:
Saturday, February 20
Little Bayshore Blvd.
Selmon eastbound exit ramp to Florida Ave.
Franklin St. from Old Water St. to Whiting St.
Florida Ave. from Channelside Dr. to Whiting St.
Whiting St. from Florida to Tampa St. westbound
Morgan St. from Old Water to Brorein northbound
Morgan St. from Bell St. to Old Water St. southbound
Platt St. / Channelside Dr. from Parker St. to Nebraska Ave.
Bayshore Blvd. from Platt St. to Gandy Blvd.
Gandy Blvd. from Zion St. to Bayshore Blvd.
Sunday, February 21
Bayshore Blvd. from Brorein St. to Swann Ave.
Platt St. from Plant Ave to Florida Ave.
Franklin St. from Whiting St. to Brorein St southbound
Franklin St. from Channelside Dr. to Old Water St.
Whiting St. from Florida Ave. to Tampa St. westbound
Bayshore Blvd. from Swann Ave. to Gandy Blvd.
West Davis Islands Blvd. to East Davis Islands Blvd.
Arbor Pl. from Davis Blvd. to Columbia Dr.
Columbia Dr. from Arbor Pl. to Barbados Ave.
Barbados Ave. from Columbia Dr. to Channel Dr.
Channel Dr. from Barbados Ave. to S Davis Blvd.
S Davis Blvd. to W Davis Blvd.
The following City of Tampa parking garages will be open at 5 a.m. on Saturday, February 20 and 4:30 a.m. on Sunday, February 21 and charging $10 per vehicle:
- Fort Brooke Garage, 107 N Franklin St.
- TCC Garage, 333 S Franklin St.
- South Regional Garage, 301 Channelside Dr.
- Whiting St. Garage, 400 E Whiting St. (Open on Saturday only)
The Tampa Police Department would like to remind all run participants and spectators to report suspicious activity. If you see something, say something. No tip is too small. Report anything suspicious to the nearest police officer or submit an anonymous tip using the TPD mobile app available on iPhones and Androids.
Traffic and parking on the south end of downtown will also be impacted by fans arriving at the Amalie Arena between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. for Arena Cross on Saturday, February 20 and 10 a.m. and 12 noon Sunday, February 21.