Brightline (FEC) Update

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Qapla

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Oops

I partially mis-spoke

It is SunRail that runs from Winter Park-Kissimmee (actually, from DeBary) and it is well used (at least before C-19 it was) as well as the Star being used for day trips from Orlando area to Tampa.

Sorry for the confusion.
 

joelkfla

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Oops

I partially mis-spoke

It is SunRail that runs from Winter Park-Kissimmee (actually, from DeBary) and it is well used (at least before C-19 it was) as well as the Star being used for day trips from Orlando area to Tampa.

Sorry for the confusion.
I'm not quite sure what you're getting at. Amtrak does stop at Winter Park, so your original statement was correct, as I see it.

My point, in response to the suggestion that Brightline use the existing Tampa Union Station, was that I don't see any advantage to Brightline in making it easy to transfer to Amtrak at TPA.

Before the pandemic, I'd toyed with the idea of a day trip on the Star to Tampa, but parking seems to be limited at ORL; KIS, which has plenty of parking, is a 40-minute drive; and I would only get 5 hours at most to spend in Tampa. Those, plus the possibility of not getting a window seat on the train, discouraged me enough that I never got around to it.
 

crescent-zephyr

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I'm not quite sure what you're getting at. Amtrak does stop at Winter Park, so your original statement was correct, as I see it.

My point, in response to the suggestion that Brightline use the existing Tampa Union Station, was that I don't see any advantage to Brightline in making it easy to transfer to Amtrak at TPA.

Before the pandemic, I'd toyed with the idea of a day trip on the Star to Tampa, but parking seems to be limited at ORL; KIS, which has plenty of parking, is a 40-minute drive; and I would only get 5 hours at most to spend in Tampa. Those, plus the possibility of not getting a window seat on the train, discouraged me enough that I never got around to it.
It’s a nice enough trip. Lots of orange groves which are fun to travel past at track speed.
 

Qapla

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When we did day trips to Tampa we left from Palatka - about 45 minute drive for us but we can park all day for free

Usually had no problem getting a window seat

The problems come when the southbound runs late and the northbound is on time.

We also did a day trip to Kissimmee. We ate pizza there and then rode Sunrail from the southern terminus (Poinciana) to the northern terminus (DeBary) and then rode Sunrail back to Winter Park to catch the Star back to Palatka.

Both of us being seniors makes the Sunrail tickets very affordable

I'm not quite sure what you're getting at. Amtrak does stop at Winter Park, so your original statement was correct, as I see it.
Where I mis-spoke was the discussion was about "Brightline" - it is "Sunrail" that presently goes from Winter Park to Kissimmee so there is no "present" competition with Amtrak from Brightline in the Orlando area
 

jis

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High-speed rail company Brightline has pushed back the starting date of its Tampa connection to Orlando as it prepares to make a Disney station more of a priority.

Brightline is in the process of finalizing the conceptual design for the Orlando to Tampa route. The plan now is to start the work in 2022 rather than 2021 for the route and station buildout. The construction would take three years, making 2025 the completion date for the Tampa connection.
 

jis

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I went out yesterday to scout what Brightline has been upto in Southern Brevard County, and here is what I saw.:

1. Work continuing apace on construction of new trestles across Sebastian River and Crane Creek. Noting substantial yet on Turkey Creek and Goat Creek. Did not check Eua Gallie River.

2. 2nd track is in place except on bridges, between north bank of Sebastian River and almost upto Malabar Road. Bits and pieces in place between Malabar Road and Port Malabar Road. From thence to Palm Bay Road ROW has been prepared but no tracks. Grade crossing work for second track has been completed upto Port Malabar Road from the south. next would be Palm Bay Rd, North of that that there is second track in place in the form of siding almost upto Crane Creek.

Next I will have to go out and check Melbourne to Cocoa.
 

jis

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I think that the FEC should take you on an inspection trip in their office car....
Don’t you?🙂
There are a few from FECRS who I know who have been working with FECR to produce those nice videos of construction status. Though they tend to use regular cars an drones rather than inspection cars, but those videos are well worth watching. They appear from time to time on FECRS's public Facebook page.
 

Brian_tampa

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Here are two links to documents from the latest bond re-marketing memorandum released on EMMA yesterday:

https://emma.msrb.org/P31404863-P31092183-P31501205.pdf

https://emma.msrb.org/P31404863-P31092183-P31501083.pdf

The files are too large to attach here. Here is the original webpage link

Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board::EMMA

click on the first bond issue link and then continuing disclosure from here

Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board::EMMA

I have read more of the first linked pdf and can note the following details as I was reading through (in no particular order, just as I came across them):

2024 9.9m annual pax

3.1m pax in 2024 from all 3 new stations incl Disney (which will add 800k of that total with avg fare of $102)
Disney extension to be up to $200m from bonds and another $100m from equity, loans, etc..

Family discounts for Disney destined trips

Additional track and rolling stock to cost $211m. $10m already spent on rolling stock and $65m on track

$168m of the $211m is related to additional double track and other rail infrastructure improvements

New I-ETMS PTC system to cost $22m

One reason for change from E-ATC to I-ETMS was to allow for greater fluidity and increased flexibility for future track changes and faster trip times. The two additional stations in S Florida would have added 2-3 minutes each. The new PTC system will mitigate that impact by shaving 5 minutes off the running time.

Original 5 trainsets (20 coaches and 10 Cheargers) cost $264m

Additional 5 trainsets (same configuration as original order + 1 spare Charger) $182m

First of the new trainsets to be delivered September 2021, 4th trainset in June 2022, and the 5th trainset in February 2023


Train air conditioners to get UV light filters to reduce spread of pathogens before resumption of service

Siemens maintenance agreement – letter of force majeure sent to Siemens requesting relief from the terms of the agreement during the operational shutdown period due to COVID-19. Siemens has furloughed or reassigned the majority of its staff. Brightline has suspended its Siemens maintenance related costs.

Total project cost (incl Disney extension) will cost $4.437B

Page 1216 has a plan of the Orlando VMF. Note that the OUC railroad west of the VMF will be Triple track in sections at least.
 
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joelkfla

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Here are two links to documents from the latest bond re-marketing memorandum released on EMMA yesterday:

https://emma.msrb.org/P31404863-P31092183-P31501205.pdf

https://emma.msrb.org/P31404863-P31092183-P31501083.pdf

The files are too large to attach here. Here is the original webpage link

Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board::EMMA

click on the first bond issue link and then continuing disclosure from here

Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board::EMMA

I have read more of the first linked pdf and can note the following details as I was reading through (in no particular order, just as I came across them):

2024 9.9m annual pax

3.1m pax in 2024 from all 3 new stations incl Disney (which will add 800k of that total with avg fare of $102)
Disney extension to be up to $200m from bonds and another $100m from equity, loans, etc..

Family discounts for Disney destined trips

Additional track and rolling stock to cost $211m. $10m already spent on rolling stock and $65m on track

$168m of the $211m is related to additional double track and other rail infrastructure improvements

New I-ETMS PTC system to cost $22m

One reason for change from E-ATC to I-ETMS was to allow for greater fluidity and increased flexibility for future track changes and faster trip times. The two additional stations in S Florida would have added 2-3 minutes each. The new PTC system will mitigate that impact by shaving 5 minutes off the running time.

Original 5 trainsets (20 coaches and 10 Cheargers) cost $264m

Additional 5 trainsets (same configuration as original order + 1 spare Charger) $182m

First of the new trainsets to be delivered September 2021, 4th trainset in June 2022, and the 5th trainset in February 2023


Train air conditioners to get UV light filters to reduce spread of pathogens before resumption of service

Siemens maintenance agreement – letter of force majeure sent to Siemens requesting relief from the terms of the agreement during the operational shutdown period due to COVID-19. Siemens has furloughed or reassigned the majority of its staff. Brightline has suspended its Siemens maintenance related costs.

Total project cost (incl Disney extension) will cost $4.437B

Page 1216 has a plan of the Orlando VMF. Note that the OUC railroad west of the VMF will be Triple track in sections at least.
Found this paragraph interesting:

"The Company continues to consider adding additional transit connectivity to its South Florida network, including service to Miami International Airport and/or Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. For connectivity to the Miami International Airport, the Company has approximately four miles of existing east-west track and would potentially utilize its existing South Florida Rail Corridor for the approximate three mile north-south portion that connects into Miami International Airport’s already built intermodal center’s rail platform and station. For service to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, the Company rail corridor is already inside the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport’s perimeter, so a station would be the main addition. The Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport station may be a part of the South Florida Commuter Service, as described further below. These two stations would connect the Project to the top three airports in Florida, which had a combined 133.3 million passenger enplanements in 2019."

Maybe they're eyeing the space that had been intended for Amtrak at MIA.

BTW -- seems to me like the 2 links are to identical documents?
 

chrsjrcj

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The job listing says Aventura to Miami, but Broward County Commissioners in January voted to go through the same process that Miami-Dade County did to have commuter rail extend to FLL Airport initially then Deerfield Beach (once an amenable solution for the New River crossing is found*). Like Miami-Dade, Broward is funding it with the 1% transportation tax passed in 2018. I wish the Broward extension would continue the few miles to Boca Raton (a far more logical northern endpoint), but...county lines means people who live/work/shop in Broward don't go to Palm Beach County and vice versa :rolleyes:.

*Speaking of, I found this document that details 4 possibilities for an additional New River crossing. The proposals are: 1) 21' Bascule Bridge 2) 55' Bascule Bridge 3) 80' Fixed Bridge 4) Tunnel. 2019_12_19_Executive_Summary_Final_Feasibility_Study_Technical Memorandum_optimized.pdf (browardmpo.org)

Of course, tunnel is the most expensive option but my guess is the one preferred by the City of Fort Lauderdale, while FDOT may prefer the 21' bascule bridge. What's interesting is that due to the proximity to the Fort Lauderdale station, alternatives 2 and 3 would require an elevated platform, while alternative 4 would require an underground platform. It will be extremely interesting to see how this plays out over the next few years.

ETA: Also, this presentation has some artists renderings of the proposed crossings. Microsoft PowerPoint - New River Crossing 2nd Round Presentations_MPO_12_13_19.pptx (browardmpo.org)
 

VentureForth

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Maybe jis can shed some light on this...

I am impressed by the progress of the Crane Creek bridge in Melbourne. Then I noticed that there was already grade created and a 2nd track bridge already in place that I would have assumed would be easier to tear down, rebuild, move traffic to, then rinse repeat to the current mainline.

Is the new bridge going to be for BOTH sets of tracks? Wouldn't that add unnecessary earthmoving on the north side as well as introduce slowing curves?
 

jis

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Maybe jis can shed some light on this...

I am impressed by the progress of the Crane Creek bridge in Melbourne. Then I noticed that there was already grade created and a 2nd track bridge already in place that I would have assumed would be easier to tear down, rebuild, move traffic to, then rinse repeat to the current mainline.

Is the new bridge going to be for BOTH sets of tracks? Wouldn't that add unnecessary earthmoving on the north side as well as introduce slowing curves?
I have no idea what they are upto other than that there has been almost zero progress in whatever they are doing over the last four or so weeks.

OTOH, a lot of new second track has been laid between Sebastian and Melbourne, and grade crossing widened for two tracks etc. over the last month or two.
 

VentureForth

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I have no idea what they are upto other than that there has been almost zero progress in whatever they are doing over the last four or so weeks.

OTOH, a lot of new second track has been laid between Sebastian and Melbourne, and grade crossing widened for two tracks etc. over the last month or two.
I've seen a lot of that North of Crane Creek up to Cocoa, particularly where the track crosses Babcock (There's a Sonic there which will become an AWESOME railfan spot).
 

jis

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The thing that they are building across Crane Creek looks really rickety for a new permanent bridge. So it might be a diversion bridge so that they can rebuild the more permanent bridge. I am not sure about it, but it is my guess looking at the flimsy thing that the thing that they building looks.
 

joelkfla

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The thing that they are building across Crane Creek looks really rickety for a new permanent bridge. So it might be a diversion bridge so that they can rebuild the more permanent bridge. I am not sure about it, but it is my guess looking at the flimsy thing that the thing that they building looks.
I don't know about Crane Creek specifically, but on Roaming Railfan's videos they usually build a temporary trestle just for the construction crane to get access to the rail bridge. If the ROW for the 2nd track has been built up approaching the bridge, the temporary trestle would not line up with it, but there would be a large cleared area for construction equipment to stage on.
 

neroden

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Maybe jis can shed some light on this...

I am impressed by the progress of the Crane Creek bridge in Melbourne. Then I noticed that there was already grade created and a 2nd track bridge already in place that I would have assumed would be easier to tear down, rebuild, move traffic to, then rinse repeat to the current mainline.

Is the new bridge going to be for BOTH sets of tracks? Wouldn't that add unnecessary earthmoving on the north side as well as introduce slowing curves?
They're increasing the maritime clearance of the bridges and reducing the number of waterflow obstructions. This means that even in cases where they already had the foundations for a double track bridge, they are completely removing the foundations and replacing them; this leads to some odd-seeming construction choices.
 

VentureForth

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Maybe this evening I can go back and look and see if there is any rail positioned leading to the constructed bridge. I think that it would be logical to keep the current alignment. That new bridge could be just for construction, but in this case, I don't think they are raising the level of the tracks. Since this was never a draw/swing bridge, there shouldn't be maritime traffic inland of the bridge that would exceed the height requirements. Besides that, it would have to make a grade crossing nearly immediately after the bridge.
 
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