Judgement Day for SunRail approaches

Greetings everyone,

I sincerely apologize for the lack of activity here. Things have been very crazy in recent months and have not had the chance to really plan out my next few postings. In fact, much of what I had planned quickly had to be scrapped due to the political climate that we are now experiencing. Nonetheless, I have promised everyone, especially our Twitter and Facebook followers that I would post again soon. So here I go! 🙂

Now, what to post about today? Why not talk about SunRail, the planned commuter rail system in Orlando. SunRail has been anything but a smooth ride during its course of planning. First we saw the bitter liability showdown between CSX and the state of Florida, not to mention all of the financial problems and political fights that were brought along with it. But now we have a new governor, Rick Scott, who so far, has been very anti-transit. It certainly seemed at first that SunRail was doomed, but with pressure mounting from both sides of the aisle, the verdict remains very foggy, if at best.

Click here to view a recent article that was put out by WFTV in Orlando.

Now, here is my view on SunRail. Despite its costs and possible risks to us taxpayers, SunRail will bring an alternative method of transportation to many residents of the Orlando area. Can you imagine less congestion on I-4 and the various expressways due to SunRail? I sure can. Just like High Speed Rail, which Governor Scott derailed earlier this year, we have come so far to bring the SunRail project to reality. For the Governor to kill the project would prove to be far worse than any of the risk that the state would take on by moving forward with the project.

Governor Scott has until July to decide what he wants to do, but my hope is that he will approve the project so that Orlando has a chance to create meaningful public transit, and possibly inspire other metro areas, like Tampa, to do the same someday.

I will be reporting back when Governor Scott has made his decision. Hopefully, he will have made the right choice for Orlando’s future.

Best Regards,
HARTride 2012
Tampa Bay Transit Administrator

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