Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Discussion relating to the FEC operations, past and present. Includes Brightline. Official web site can be found here: FECRWY.COM.

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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby Noel Weaver » Wed Jul 25, 2018 12:28 pm

Teutobergerwald wrote:No stop at Vero Beach ????


No stops between WPB and Orlando. I think Vero may have passengers service sometime down the road but not with Brightline at least at the start.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby R&DB » Wed Jul 25, 2018 2:39 pm

Noel Weaver » Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:28 pm

Teutobergerwald wrote:
No stop at Vero Beach ????


No stops between WPB and Orlando. I think Vero may have passengers service sometime down the road but not with Brightline at least at the start


Port St. Lucie and Melbourne make more sense as intermediate stops with their larger populations.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby bostontrainguy » Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:48 pm

It is interesting to follow the I-4 all the way to Tampa and see that preserved median. It goes right downtown and then there are two easy connections that can be built bringing it right to the present Amtrak station if that is the desired plan.

On the northern end, connecting to the airport station isn't as obvious but I am sure Brightline has it figured out there too.

Florida has surprisingly prepared well for this venture.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby chrsjrcj » Wed Jul 25, 2018 5:33 pm

I can almost guarantee you they won't go to the existing Amtrak station (Tampa Union Station). The original Florida HSR plan had the station at the Marion Transit Center, on the northside of downtown. It's almost a similar site to MiamiCentral (pre-Brightline), and could easily become a TampaCentral development.

I believe for OIA access, SR 417 was the preferred route (referring to the HSR project). The other alternative was via SR 528, then a utility corridor that ran along Taft Vineland Rd, and finally curving south around the airport. The 528 route added a stop at the Convention Center which would have given access to International Drive (hotels, SeaWorld, and Universal Studios). Disney said that they would not direct guests to use the HSR if it made any intermediate stops between the airport and Disney. IMO, that doesn't matter, and the benefits of the 528 route outweigh the cons.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby David Benton » Wed Jul 25, 2018 6:31 pm

Is there not enough potential traffic for at least one daily trip to Jacksonville?.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby Noel Weaver » Wed Jul 25, 2018 6:47 pm

David Benton wrote:Is there not enough potential traffic for at least one daily trip to Jacksonville?.


There probably is enough potential for a trip to Jacksonville but the idea behind Brightline is fast, frequent service so one train a day will not do it. I think Jacksonville will be in the cards. It can be done on existing tracks and I think it would be a good market. The present Amtrak station is in a terrible location but I think might well rebuild and reopen the original station which is now a convention center. I think down the road that Brightline will cover much more of Florida including Jacksonville, not right away but eventually.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby mtuandrew » Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:45 am

Remember that shovel-ready Orlando HSR project canceled by Rick Scott in the first months of his governorship?

http://www.tampabay.com/florida-politic ... peed-rail/

Rick Scott and wife invested in parent company bidding on Tampa high-speed rail

Scott said in June he believes a high-speed rail line from Orlando to Tampa is a good idea. He and his wife last year invested at least $3 million in a credit fund for All Aboard Florida’s parent company, Fortress Investment Group
L
By Mary Ellen Klas

As one of his first acts in office in 2011, Gov. Rick Scott canceled a $2.4 billion federally funded and shovel-ready bullet train from Orlando to Tampa because it carried "an extremely high risk of overspending taxpayer dollars with no guarantee of economic growth.''

It was a political slap to then-President Barack Obama, who considered the high-speed rail project central to his infrastructure reinvestment initiative.

Now, the idea has returned — revived by All Aboard Florida, a Coral Gables-based company that has heavily supported Scott — and the governor has reversed course.

Scott said in June he believes a high-speed rail line from Orlando to Tampa is a good idea. He and his wife last year invested at least $3 million in a credit fund for All Aboard Florida's parent company, Fortress Investment Group, according to recently disclosed financial documents.


Disgusting.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby gokeefe » Fri Aug 17, 2018 12:25 pm

It is ugly. On the other hand I would say the prospects for success are now quite high. Scott is certainly an opportunist.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby electricron » Fri Aug 17, 2018 12:37 pm

Brightline trains are not high speed trains going faster than 125 mph. They are also privately funded, not relying upon a state subsidy for operations. It’s also not a conflict of interest to invest years later in a company after making a political decision. It’s also not being two faced on an issue when you consistently advocate for less government and more private enterprise providing inter city rail services - even if both the private and pubic supported trains go to the exactly same places. Look at it this way, the less the government has to spend supporting inter city trains, the more money they will have for transit within cities.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby mtuandrew » Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:34 pm

It’s not that I think he is necessarily two-faced in re: how he feels private business should be running for-profit trains rather than have Amtrak or a state public operator do it. He’s internally consistent there.

I think it’s disingenuous that after turning down the Federal check and making himself known to be firmly against any passenger rail, he changed his mind when a corporation based in Florida offered a private alternative to the public HSR. Carefully considered opinions do change, but Rick Scott doesn’t give me the impression of a man who willingly changes his mind. I think it’s corrupt that he accepted campaign donations and bought FIG stock while also influencing public agencies to give Brightline access to public lands and provide all the other hidden government subsidies, all in order to make money for himself. Compare moves like this to the Credit Mobilier Scandal, if on a smaller scale.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby electricron » Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:50 pm

He invested in Fortress Investment Group, which owns and controls more businesses than Brightline.
Is it wrong for a Governor and his wife to invest into real estate properties within their great state of Florida?

Golly, I’ll be more worried if a governor was unwilling to put his own money behind businesses within his home state.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby gokeefe » Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:57 pm

Nope ... mtuandrew has got it right. This is a conflict of interest (hence why it had to be disclosed) and second government officials are not expected to make significant private investments in for profit corporations subject to their jurisdiction while in office. That's called "profiteering" and is statutory language that describes both unethical and potentially criminal conduct.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby mtuandrew » Fri Aug 17, 2018 7:31 pm

Thank you, George.

Ron, instances like these are unfortunately pretty unremarkable “local news” nowadays. Maybe it doesn’t ring too many bells because of so much else happening nationwide?
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby electricron » Fri Aug 17, 2018 7:39 pm

gokeefe wrote:Nope ... mtuandrew has got it right. This is a conflict of interest (hence why it had to be disclosed) and second government officials are not expected to make significant private investments in for profit corporations subject to their jurisdiction while in office. That's called "profiteering" and is statutory language that describes both unethical and potentially criminal conduct.

As long as he discloses all his finances, including dividends from Fortress Investment Group, he meets the legal requirements as an elected official for the state of Florida. Informed citizens have this right to know this before the next election, and take whatever choices they want in the voting booth with his financial choices. There is no requirement in Florida law for the governor to enter a blind trust. The idea that the governor and his family is solely reliant upon his state wages for income is extreme, imho.
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Re: Brightline fka All Aboard Florida Orlando - Miami FL FEC

Postby gokeefe » Fri Aug 17, 2018 7:48 pm

That is only true if this is the only thing he has done. A disclosure such as this one immediately begs the question whether or not he has taken actions in office in order to support the project.

As far as Florida law goes you're in the wrong section of the law library. Find the federal statutes and take a look at honest services fraud. If there's a criminal issue here it may very likely be a federal case.
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