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Brightline/Virgin Trains (FEC) Update

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Qapla

Conductor
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Jul 15, 2019
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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

Service Attendant
Joined
Oct 16, 2018
Messages
243
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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Oct 21, 2015
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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

Conductor
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Gator Country Florida
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.
 
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