Trips to O-Town are about to be a breeze because Brightline is on track to open its Orlando station later this year! While there isn’t an exact date for the opening, we do know that the train’s expansion to Orlando is 90% complete and that rides could come in the second quarter of the year — sometime between April and June.
Lasting just 3 hours, this development is a godsend for those looking to explore the city or, well, plan a trip to Disney without the stress of driving or catching a flight.
And as excitement continues to build, this week marked a major milestone. On March 6, Brightline announced that its trains reached speeds of 130 mph during testing along a 35-mile rail corridor between Orlando International Airport and Cocoa, FL.
The historic accomplishment, connecting South Florida to Central Florida in about 3 hours, marks Brightline as the fastest train in Florida and the Southeastern US (blink, and you’ll miss it). By reaching 130 mph, Brightline broke its previous record of 110 mph, which was set last fall during testing through Martin and St. Lucie Counties.
“Reaching 130 isn’t just another milestone to our team, but the continuation of a dream that we’ve been working towards for several years,” said Patrick Goddard, president of Brightline Trains. “More importantly, this historic feat brings us one step closer to launching Brightline service between Orlando and Miami.”
Trains are required to test faster than planned operating speeds, but once carrying passengers, trains will travel at maximum speeds of 125 mph — more than two miles per minute.
The Orlando station, which will connect 170 miles of track, is expected to reach completion this month and aims to reduce congestion along the route while offering a more efficient (and quicker) way to travel between Miami and Orlando.
The 37,350 square-foot station, spanning three stories at Orlando International Airport, will feature retail shopping, a signature bar with hand-crafted cocktails and light bites, and panoramic views overlooking oncoming trains.
Brightline currently offers routes between Miami, Aventura, Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton and West Palm Beach. Depending on the destination, it offers fares for as low as $10 for one-way trips. Other potential routes that are in the works are Tampa, which is part of Brightline’s Phase 2 expansion into Central Florida.
To stay up-to-date with the Orlando expansion, visit their website by clicking here. It seems that soon we’ll be on the next train out directly to The City Beautiful!