Brightline Announces Plans to Build PortMiami Station in 2020by Daine Taylor /
Brightline, the high-speed rail system that is soon to be Virgin Trains, announced plans to begin building a PortMiami station in 2020.
The proposed rail line will stretch from West Palm Beach to Orlando, and is scheduled to open in 2022. The company plans to expand to Tampa and Jacksonville in the future, as well.
"This is a first-of-its-kind train … that will connect the cruise capital of the world with a car-free option for millions of cruisers looking to start their vacation a little earlier," said Patrick Goddard, president of Brightline.
The line, which currently operates from downtown Miami through Fort Lauderdale and to West Palm Beach, will eventually extend as far as the Orlando International Airport by 2022. PortMiami is home to 22 cruise lines, which served more than 5 million travelers last year, accommodating more cruise passengers than any other port in the world.
The proposed rail line would also make Brightline the only intercity rail service in the U.S. connecting a major cruise port to an international airport.
“This private-public partnership is a great opportunity to expand PortMiami’s connectivity to visitors traveling from central Florida and for Miami-Dade County residents to get to the Orlando area in a quick, enjoyable way,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez, in a statement.
The PortMiami line isn’t the only rail service the company has in the works. It’s also working on a station in Aventura, in northeast Miami-Dade County, and is negotiating with the city of Boca Raton to add a station in 2020.