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KendallKid

Florida Rail Transit | Intercity Rail | Florida High Speed Rail

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How could Florida with a high density population along its Atlantic & Gulf Coastlines does not have passenger rail service or at least building it as we speak? Highway building should always keep up pace with growing populations but when the density is beyond normal ranges, passenger rail needs to be supplemented over additional travel lanes since it does not always solve the problem. Its not right that all of society must be forced to own and operate a vehicle to get around!

Edited by Jerseyman4

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How could Florida with a high density population along its Atlantic & Gulf Coastlines does not have passenger rail service or at least building it as we speak? Highway building should always keep up pace with growing populations but when the density is beyond normal ranges, passenger rail needs to be supplemented over additional travel lanes since it does not always solve the problem. Its not right that all of society must be forced to own and operate a vehicle to get around!

Well seems most florida politicians, Jim Sebesta aside, are stuck in the good old days of florida and refuse to admit that there are other needs in the state. Living in Hillsborough County I'm sickened by the constant attack on public transit. County commissioners continue to attack the local bus system, as well as refuse to support anything additional. They want to see the streetcar to nowhere shut down. While I agree the streetcar in Tampa is pretty futile in it's current state, if the loop that was planned were ever completed it could be a huge success. Even still for all intents and purposes it's still a sucess. Another problem with transit in florida is that no one wants to be taxed for it. They don't mind being taxed daily to see their money build roads that are immediately out of date, but GOD FORBID they're taxed for transit!!! Rail will eventually make it's way into florida. As soon as we can replace our current governor with someone more willing to invest in a much needed rail system then florida will finally be able to call itself a progressive state. As long as we think roads are the answers we're just another po'dunk southern hickville. Oh yeah and being forced to drive a car and then told driving is a 'priviledge' really pisses me off.

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"How could Florida with a high density population along its Atlantic & Gulf Coastlines does not have passenger rail service or at least building it as we speak?"

There is a ststem called TriRail which goes from Miami to Palm Beach. I have taken it a couple of times. While it's perfectly decent, it isn't especially fast. The Amtrak trains- Silver Meteor and Silver Star do serve Miami, Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville. Tallahassee and the panhandle are completely left out of the equation. There was a third train, the Silver Palm, but this was eliminated a year or two ago. I have taken these trains as well. They are generally comfortable, but agonizingly slow. Rapid rail is the answer for Florida's burgeoning population and development. It's sad that it's not being seriously considered by anyone in power there.

Edited by tombarnes

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From the Florida Governer's office. High Speed Rail in Florida Jeb gives the reasons it was canceled. Even if he were to be voted out today, the financial risk to the state would remain.

Florida ought to take a page from NC & Virgina and build up rail service using conventional rail then work to convert it to HSR.

Oh yes I agree. I remeber voting on the HSR Amendment when I was living in FLA. Least it was a forward thinking admendment and very ambitious on at that. Now living up in NC - it was pleasant to hear that the state has been very proactive to promote alternative forms of transit - expecially rail service. You can find out more here:

http://www.bytrain.org/

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Many Amtrack lines more or less are slow b/c of the stops they make along the route. It took me 6.5 hours to go from Lansing to Chicago by train-- a trip that should only take 4 hrs max by car. Also, Lansing to Cleveland, for example, goes like this: Lansing-Hammond, IN-Cleveland. Hammond, IN is Chicago metro.

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One of the problems with the Amtrak line here is if you want to go between Orlando and anywhere in South Florida. You have to travel to Lakeland and then it heads back across the state and south. Doesn't make a whole lot of sense to a business traveler. If you are visiting MickeyWorld from Miami then I'm sure it's great.

I travel to Miami for business and would like to make more trips, but the traveling is too much of a hassle. If they could get high speed rail between the cities, I would double the amount of trips I make. Throw in Wi-Fi on the train and I'm in business, baby. I could work the whole way down and back.

Unfortunately, until Orlando gets a better way of getting around downtown, it won't make sense for business travelers to come to Orlando. We need to expand our Lymmo service.

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I Think it's time to add a florida high speed rail train, florida's traffic these days is at the worst level ever and somebody needs to change that by november.

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Gov. Jeb Bush today announced a nearly $491 million deal that will bring commuter rail to Central Florida, capping a 20-year dream to relieve gridlock in one of the nation's most congested regions.

Trains could start running between DeBary and Orlando by late 2009. An extended route into Osceola County is scheduled to be completed by 2013.

Orlando Sentinel Article

24421222.jpg

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On WUSF (Tampa NPR Radio station) yesterday evening they had three people talking about the new expressway/beltway going through Hillsborough and Pasco counties. Durring the converstatoin Senator Sebesta mentioned in small detail that two private organizations are currently building proposals for the Florida HSR!!!! He said that it is probobale that if and when it is built their could very likely be a station at the apex of I-4 and I-75! I could not listen to the rest of the program though so I only caught the first 15 minutes though. Does anyone know more details about this development?

Steve

Edited by tampasteve

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nothing new on HSR. Except for the fact that GOAA is building a $200M Intermodal Center at OIA which will have a link-up with future HSR (much like MIA's MIC).

As for ORL's Commuter Rail, it is still moving along. In fact, the authority has already purchased train cars which are being tested in the Tri-Rail system for troubleshooting and will be brought back up to ORL when Phase I of the system opens in 2 years.

Edited by JRS1

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I've heard officals from Clearwater, St. Pete, and Tampa have toured Charlotte and Denver recently investigating the possibility of a light rail system for the Tampa Bay Metro.

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The Tampa-St. Petersburg area could certainly use a light rail system. I hope the visit produces something more than mere talk. It is good to see that there has been movement toward the establishment of a system in Broward and Palm Beach Counties. Please keep us up to date on this.

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Thanks for posting that. I would be interested to attend the event in Orlando (whenever they decide to announce dates) just to hear what they have to say. It's good PR for high speed rail regardless of whether they are to get a contract or not.

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My take:

Personally, the state should just let JR Central assume total control of the HSR route--provided that the French, Koreans, or Chinese don't come up with better plans.

Simultaneously, FDOT should form a rail authority to operate in-state corridors. The state should definitely take a clue from NC and and staff attendants at certain suburban stations and tourist towns deemed too small to have a full-time agent. While Amtrak might have a prearranged agreement for FEC service, the state should strongly consider other entities for the other routes while it would be understood that connections would be coordinated by the various operators.

If Florida follows my advice to a tee, then Jacksonville Union Terminal would be the city's hub while a new North Jacksonville station will be built for commuters and the planned Sunrail LYNX station will be the main Orlando stop. If it looks west to California, then a hypothetical Amtrak Florida would use both the existing station in JAX and Union Terminal and would use Orlando's current Amtrak station as the city's principal stop with several suburban stop to avoid overcrowding.

These maps show how an effective intercity rail system can--and should--be built:

post-14452-089565000 1287809258_thumb.jp

post-14452-065865000 1287809298_thumb.jp

post-14452-026176800 1287809313_thumb.jp

post-14452-067433200 1287809333_thumb.jp

The maps are based on a blog entry that I did earlier this year.

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