In late November Brightline and Walt Disney World Resort announced that they had entered into an agreement to construct a train station at Disney Springs, the popular shopping, dining, and entertainment complex. The Brightline station is intended to provide a convenient travel option between Walt Disney World Resort and Brightline stations at Orlando International Airport (OIA), Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach and planned stations in Aventura, Boca Raton, and Port Miami. There have also been discussions about Brightline connecting to Tampa, Jacksonville, and to the Space Coast region.
As Florida continues to see “migration” from northern states, albeit slowed amid the coronavirus pandemic, there will be a greater need for a greater solution in moving people and connecting commerce around the sunshine state. Brightline continues to work to be part of that solution. Brightline’s expansion from West Palm Beach to OIA is on track to be completed in 2022. The agreement is conditioned upon Brightline’s satisfaction of certain obligations including obtaining all necessary government approvals.
The design concept for the proposed station at Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort includes a lobby on the ground level, passenger facilities, and an upper-level train platform. The proposed location would be in close proximity to Walt Disney World Resort’s four theme parks, two water parks, and more than 25 hotels.
“Brightline will offer a car-free connection to the millions of visitors from around the state and the world who plan to make Walt Disney World Resort part of their vacation plans,” said Patrick Goddard, president of Brightline. “Our mission has always been to connect our guests to the people and places that matter, and Walt Disney World Resort is a tremendous example of this.”
“We’re excited to work with Brightline as they pursue the potential development of a train station at Walt Disney World Resort, a project that would support our local economy and offer a bold, forward-looking transportation solution for our community and guests,” said Jeff Vahle, president of Walt Disney World Resort.
In 2018, Brightline was awarded the right to execute lease agreements with FDOT and the Central Florida Expressway Authority to connect OIA and Tampa. In February 2020, Brightline commenced engineering and design work for the proposed project.