ST.PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) —The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority’s rapid transit system, the SunRunner, began running on Friday.

The 10-mile, 16-stop route connects downtown St. Petersburg to the beach.

“It has stations instead of stops, it has its own lane, it works with the signal so you never have to wait at a red light. When you stand at the station all the doors open up, you just go in and you can take your bike on the bus. It’s much more fast and convenient,” PSTA CEO Brad Miller said.

Riders can board the bus every 15 minutes from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. and every 30 minutes from 8 p.m. to midnight.

According to Miller, the route is one of the most utilized in the region. They believe the demand will increase as more families move to the area.

“It’s a great area for public transportation to improve because it’ll benefit so many people,” Miller said.

The first 500 riders will receive a Gold Card that includes discounts to some businesses along the route.

Rides are free for the first six months.