The Real Deal Miami

SoFla rail project shuns public funding: OPINION

Privately-funded train service would be nation's first in 43 years
January 20, 2014 01:30PM

Rendering of an All Aboard Florida train arriving into the station

Rendering of an All Aboard Florida train arriving into the station

All Aboard Florida’s high-speed train is still afloat, largely due to the fact that it is not reliant on government funding, columnist Holman Jenkins wrote in a Wall Street Journal op-ed.

Private equity giant Fortress Investment Group is hoping to better connect the beaches of Miami and Fort Lauderdale to the attractions in Orlando without pursuing operating subsidies. Fortress-owned Florida East Coast Industries has direct ties to Henry Flagler, who built an extensive railroad system in the late 1800’s that helped make Florida what it is today. All Aboard Florida would borrow from Flagler’s model.

If successful, All Aboard Florida could guide infrastructure projects in other states, Jenkins argued.

The train would share existing rail lines used by freight trains. At one stretch of the proposed route, the train could reach speeds of 125 miles per hour. Train operation is expected to begin in late 2015. Plans call for the construction of a Grand Central-like station in Miami and a smaller station in Fort Lauderdale. [WSJ] — Eva Cantillo