the WHITE HOUSEPresident Barack Obama

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The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release

Fact Sheet: High Speed Intercity Passenger Rail Program: Tampa - Orlando - Miami

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Awardees : Florida Department of Transportation

Total Approximate Funding (entire corridor) : $1,250,000,000

Benefiting State : Florida

Miles of Track : New - 84, Planned - 240, Total - 324 miles

Grants from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) will go toward the creation of a new high-speed rail corridor that connects Tampa Bay, Orlando, Miami and other communities in central and south Florida.

This region has experienced significant population growth in recent decades, as well as increases in the volume of visitors, leading to strains on area roadways and airports. Currently, the region is almost entirely reliant on automobiles for transportation between these metro areas, which together have a population of over 10 million people and account for two of the nation’s 20 largest metro areas.

The new high-speed rail service will provide an attractive and competitive transportation alternative for residents and visitors in the area. The first phase of the service will connect Orlando to Tampa, with intermediate service to several of central Florida’s major tourist destinations. The second phase will connect Orlando to Miami, following either an inland or coastal route.

It is estimated that these investments in high-speed rail will create thousands of jobs throughout Florida, which has one of the highest unemployment rates in the nation.

Summary of Corridor Investments

Tampa - Orlando: This investment will initiate the development of the Tampa to Orlando segment, with speeds reaching 168mph and 16 round trips per day on brand new track dedicated solely to high-speed rail. Trip time between the two cities on the new line will be less than one hour, compared to around 90 minutes by car. This project will create jobs and generate economic activity as 84 miles of track are constructed, stations are built or enhanced, and equipment is purchased. Completion of this phase is anticipated in 2014.

Orlando - Miami: Scheduled for completion in 2017, the 230-mile Orlando to Miami line is expected to operate at speeds up to 186mph, reducing travel time between these two cities to approximately two hours, or roughly half as long as it takes to drive the same route. Ultimately, 20 round trips per day between Orlando and Miami are planned. Although no ARRA funding will be used for this segment, significant planning activities are on-going to prepare for this second phase of Florida’s high-speed rail vision.