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The Florida Department of Transportation has provided a $2.7 million grant to the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART) to extend service hours and increase frequency on the TECO Line streetcar in Tampa.The grant also will enable HART to provide free rides on the heritage streetcar system for the next three years, HART officials said in a press release.The agency will increase streetcar service to every 15 minutes from 20. The added service will give Tampa residents and visitors more transportation options, HART officials said. "As waitlists for downtown parking increase, and Water Street construction gets underway, the TECO Line Streetcar becomes an invaluable travel option for those living and working in downtown and historic Ybor City," said Michael English, president of the Tampa Historic Streetcar Inc. (THS). "This could be a game changer for transportation in downtown Tampa." The news comes as HART is studies a proposed streetcar extension from downtown Tampa to Tampa Heights. Funded by FDOT, that study is in project development to pursue federal funding.