HOME
        TheInfoList






The Florida High Speed Corridor is a cancelled taxpayer-funded high-speed rail project in the U.S. state of Florida. Initial service would have run between the cities of Tampa and Orlando, with plans to then extend service to South Florida, terminating in Miami. Trains with a top speed of 168 mph (270 km/h) to 186 mph (300 km/h) would run on dedicated rail lines alongside the state's existing highway network.

Construction of the line was slated to begin in 2011, with the initial Tampa-Orlando phase completed by 2014.[3] On February 16, 2011, Florida Governor Rick Scott formally announced that he would be rejecting federal funds to construct the high-speed railway, thereby killing the Florida High Speed Rail project. Governor Scott said the project was that it would be "far too costly to taxpayers" and that "the risk[s] far outweigh the benefits".[4]

In the wake of the project's cancellation, a private sector express passenger service running across much of the proposed route has been proposed by All Aboard Florida, a subsidiary of Florida East Coast Industries. This project, Brightline, began operations on January 13, 2018.

Proposal

After the original federal proposal in the 1960s, U.S. federal and state governments revisited the idea of fast trains from time to time. The Passenger Railroad Rebuilding Act of 1980 led to funding of high-speed corridor studies in 1984. Private-sector consortia intending to build high-speed lines were created in Florida, Ohio, Texas, California, and Nevada. Maglev trains became a new field of interest. They were officially added to the definition of "railroad" in 1988, and were studied repeatedly. Five high-speed corridors were officially endorsed in October 1992 following passage of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991.[5] TEA-21 and other legislation continued to be passed with mentions of high-speed rail, but lacking funding or real direction.[6]

Planning

Original referendum

This section of I-4 was reconstructed in the late 2000s; the new highway alignment added a wide median for the future construction of the Orlando-Tampa high-speed rail line

In November 2000, Florida voters approved an amendment to Florida's constitution mandating the state establish a system of high speed trains exceeding 120 mph to link its five largest urban areas, with construction to commence by November 1, 2003. The Florida Legislature enacted the Florida High Speed Rail Authority Act in March 2001, creating the Florida High Speed Rail Authority (HSRA).[7] The HSRA established a Vision Plan for the system which proposed construction in several phases.[8] Preliminary assessments and environmental studies were begun to develop an initial phase of the system between Orlando and Tampa.[7]

The first phase, planned for completion in 2009 under the original referendum, would have connected Orlando to Tampa (Phase 1, Part 1), with a later extension to St. Petersburg (Phase 1, Part 2).[9] Later phases might have extended the network to Miami, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Tallahassee and Pensacola.

The Florida HSRA issued a Request for Proposal to Design, Build, Operate, Maintain and Finance (DBOM&F) the Orlando to Tampa Phase In October 2002. Two of the four received in February 2003 were reviewed further, one from a consortium of Fluor Corp. and Bombardier Transportation and one from Global Rail Consortium. The proposals showed cost of the Orlando-Tampa route to be approximately $2.4 billion. Both proposals offered private equity contributions to support operations of the system and show willingness of the private sector to share risk associated with projected ridership revenues.[3] On February 16, 2011, Florida Governor Rick Scott formally announced that he would be rejecting federal funds to construct the high-speed railway, thereby killing the Florida High Speed Rail project. Governor Scott said the project was that it would be "far too costly to taxpayers" and that "the risk[s] far outweigh the benefits".[4]

In the wake of the project's cancellation, a private sector express passenger service running across much of the proposed route has been proposed by All Aboard Florida, a subsidiary of Florida East Coast Industries. This project, Brightline, began operations on January 13, 2018.

After the original federal proposal in the 1960s, U.S. federal and state governments revisited the idea of fast trains from time to time. The Passenger Railroad Rebuilding Act of 1980 led to funding of high-speed corridor studies in 1984. Private-sector consortia intending to build high-speed lines were created in Florida, Ohio, Texas, California, and Nevada. Maglev trains became a new field of interest. They were officially added to the definition of "railroad" in 1988, and were studied repeatedly. Five high-speed corridors were officially endorsed in October 1992 following passage of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991.[5] TEA-21 and other legislation continued to be passed with mentions of high-speed rail, but lacking funding or real direction.[6]

Planning

Original referendum

This section of I-4 was reconstructed in the late 2000s; the new highway alignment added a wide median for the future construction of the Orlando-Tampa high-speed rail line

In November 2000, Florida voters approved an amendment to Florida's constitution mandating the state establish a system of high speed trains exceeding 120 mph to link its five largest urban areas, with construction to commence by November 1, 2003. The Florida Legislature enacted the Florida High Speed Rail Authority Act in March 2001, creating the Florida High Speed Rail Authority (HSRA).[7] The HSRA established a Vision Plan for the system which proposed construction in several phases.[8] Preliminary assessments and environmental studies were begun to develop an initial phase of the system between Orlando and Tampa.[7]

The first phase, planned for completion in 2009 under the original referendum, would have connected In November 2000, Florida voters approved an amendment to Florida's constitution mandating the state establish a system of high speed trains exceeding 120 mph to link its five largest urban areas, with construction to commence by November 1, 2003. The Florida Legislature enacted the Florida High Speed Rail Authority Act in March 2001, creating the Florida High Speed Rail Authority (HSRA).[7] The HSRA established a Vision Plan for the system which proposed construction in several phases.[8] Preliminary assessments and environmental studies were begun to develop an initial phase of the system between Orlando and Tampa.[7]

The first phase, planned for completion in 2009 under the original referendum, would have connected Orlando to Tampa (Phase 1, Part 1), with a later extension to St. Petersburg (Phase 1, Part 2).[9] Later phases might have extended the network to Miami, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Tallahassee and Pensacola.

The Florida HSRA issued a Request for Proposal to Design, Build, Operate, Maintain and Finance (DBOM&F) the Orlando to Tampa Phase In October 2002. Two of the four received in February 2003 were reviewed further, one from a consortium of Fluor Corp. and Bombardier Transportation and one from Global Rail Consortium. The proposals showed cost of the Orlando-Tampa route to be approximately $2.4 billion. Both proposals offered private equity contributions to support operations of the system and show willingness of the private sector to share risk associated with proje

The first phase, planned for completion in 2009 under the original referendum, would have connected Orlando to Tampa (Phase 1, Part 1), with a later extension to St. Petersburg (Phase 1, Part 2).[9] Later phases might have extended the network to Miami, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Tallahassee and Pensacola.

The Florida HSRA issued a Request for Proposal to Design, Build, Operate, Maintain and Finance (DBOM&F) the Orlando to Tampa Phase In October 2002. Two of the four received in February 2003 were reviewed further, one from a consortium of Fluor Corp. and Bombardier Transportation and one from Global Rail Consortium. The proposals showed cost of the Orlando-Tampa route to be approximately $2.4 billion. Both proposals offered private equity contributions to support operations of the system and show willingness of the private sector to share risk associated with projected ridership revenues.[7] In June 2003 Florida Governor Jeb Bush vetoed funding for the project that the Florida Legislature had approved.[10] The HSRA continued moving forward with the project, using funds already authorized by the federal government, and in October 2003 ranked the Fluor Bombardier proposal first.[7]

In early 2004, Governor Jeb Bush endorsed an effort to repeal the 2000 amendment that mandated the construction of the High Speed Rail System. On October 27, 2004, the authority voted to prefer the consortium of Fluor Corp. and Bombardier Transportation to build and operate the system, using Bombardier's JetTrain technology. However a month later in November, Florida voters repealed the 2000 amendment, removing the constitutional mandate for the system. Although the amendment was repealed, no action was taken by the state legislature in regard to the Florida High Speed Rail Authority Act. With the law still in effect, Florida's HSRA continued to meet, and completed the environmental impact statement for the Tampa-Orlando segment in 2005. With the constitutional mandate gone, however, funding for the project came to a halt and very little action was taken over the next several years.[7]

Passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 designated $8 billion for the development of a high-speed intercity passenger rail system. The Federal Railroad Administration named Florida one of ten high speed rail corridors potentially eligible for the federal funding.[11] The HSRA met on February 26, 2009, to begin planning their application for these funds.[12] Due to the passage of time, potential legal issues, and new federal funding criteria rendering the earlier bids from 2003 inapplicable, the decision was made in May 2009 that a new bidding process would be necessary.[13][14] A first round application was submitted in August 2009 for $30 million to conduct a two-year environmental study on the Orlando-Miami route. In October 2009, the authority submitted an application during the second round for the entire Tampa - Orlando - Miami corridor, broken into two components: Orlando-Tampa and Orlando-Miami.[15] Connect Us, a political action committee, was launched on August 18, 2009, to rally public support for these applications.[16]

CSX of the Central Florida Rail Corridor for the SunRail commuter rail project, and providing much needed additional funding for South Florida's Tri-Rail commuter rail system.[17] Funding of these initiatives was vital to the state's hopes to win federal HSR funding, as it showed the state of Florida was committed to creating a comprehensive rail network allowing connectivity between high speed rail and local mass transit systems.[18] The legislation also replaced the Florida High Speed Rail Authority with the Florida Rail Enterprise, a new agency created under the FDOT, responsible for construction, maintenance, and promotion of the state's high-speed rail system, as well as development and operation of publicly funded passenger rail systems in general.[19]

Florida High Speed Rail Authority Logo in 2010

On January 28, 2010, the White House announced that Florida would receive $1.25 billion of its request, about half of the cost of the Tampa-Orlando segment.[2] The state's efforts towards high speed rail between 2000 and 2005 put Florida ahead of the field in terms of the level of planning already completed, and this proved to be a major factor in winning the funds.[3] The preservation of the I-4 corridor by the FDOT, and completion of the environmental impact studies in 2005 meant that the project could have proceeded to construction in a very short time frame for a relatively affordable cost. In March 2010 the Florida Rail Enterprise was still seeking to refine cost estimates based on advanced engineering, finish development of possible Early Works (Install permanent barrier systems along most of I-4 and remove/relocate elements in median) and contract for bid in 2010 and finally initiate a new bid procurement process specific to the Tampa to Orlando phase.[1] In June 2010, the Federal Railroad Administration issued its record of final decision, the final stage of approval for the design, purchase of land and construction of phase one. Tendering was thus able to begin.[20] In October 2010, Florida received $800 million more towards construction from the FY 2010 High Speed Rail allocations.[21]

In December 2010 the US Department of Transportation redistributed approximately $1.2 billion in HSR funds that had been rejected by governors elect in Wisconsin and Ohio. Florida was projected to receive as much as $342.3 million of the reallocated rail funds which would have closed the gap of the entire projected cost of project. Construction of the line was to begin in 2011, with the initial phase completed by 2014.[3]

Cancellation

Phase 1: Tampa to Orlando route

  • ^ a b "Fact Sheet: High Speed Intercity Passenger Rail Program: Tampa - Orlando - Miami". The White House: Office of the Press Secretary. Archived from the original on 2010-04-11. Retrieved April 7, 2010.
  • ^ a b c Jackovics, Ted (January 28, 2010). "Obama calls high speed rail funding a 'down payment'". The Tampa Tribune. Archived from the original on January 5, 2013. Retrieved February 18, 2010.
  • ^ "UPDATE 1-Florida governor rejects US high-speed rail funds". Reuters. February 16, 2011.
  • ^ "Chronology of High-Speed Rail Corridors". Federal Railroad Administration. Department of Transportation. July 7, 2009. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 13, 2010.
  • ^ "CFS Report To Congress". High Speed Ground Transportation for America. Federal Railroad Administration. September 1997. Archived from the original on August 25, 2009. Retrieved February 17, 2010.
  • ^ a b c d e f "Florida High Speed Rail - Overview". Floridabullettrain.org. Archived from the original on 2013-04-14. Retrieved November 9, 2010.
  • ^ "Rail Corridors". Florida High Speed Rail. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
  • ^ "Florida High Speed Rail - Project Status - Phases/Schedules". Floridabullettrain.org. Archived from the original on 2012-08-03. Retrieved November 9, 2010.
  • ^ "Derailed: Florida Amendment for $25B Bullet Train Bites Dust in Vote - Site Selection Online". Siteselection.com. Retrieved November 9, 2010.Brightline is being developed between Orlando and Miami closely follows the Cape Canaveral route.[31]

  • Normal Exit PeriodicService.php