New Universal park, airport-to-convention center rail, part of Orlando I-Drive plans

Posted Friday, June 3, 2016 9:36 AM | Contributed by Jeff

Orange County leaders are commenting on a pending proposal to build what will be a new Universal Studios theme park off of International Drive. There are also several options on the table to introduce rail service between the airport and the Orange County Convention Center.

Read more and see video from WFTV/Orlando.

Friday, June 3, 2016 9:53 AM

We shall see on the light rail front. These types of projects are often shut down by car and taxi services who lean heavily on airport business.

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Friday, June 3, 2016 10:30 AM

Which is a shame. Plenty of idiots have tried to stifle the CLT light rail (which is currently expanding), and I hope it eventually reached the airport. Those opposed said it'll never get used. It's blown away expectations and is constantly full. I love public transportation.

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Friday, June 3, 2016 12:48 PM

Light rail service has already been introduced here in the Orlando area so it will be harder for transpiration companies to fight against it. Especially right now with the war on Uber and Lyft that they have going on around town. A rail service from the airport to the convention center/I-Drive area would be really nice and would help cutdown on traffic I would guess.

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Friday, June 3, 2016 1:56 PM

The city and county have had their eyes on getting the Sun Rail all the way to the airport pretty much from the beginning. That seems like something different compared to what they're talking about here, but then, this report is pretty awful and not coherent.

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Friday, June 3, 2016 2:30 PM

Right but with the introduction of Sun Rail its already a step in the right direction for the area. If I remember correctly didn't Sun Rail want to run from downtown to the airport and the convention center/I-Drive area? I wonder if they will push harder to make that happen or bid for their line to happen instead of this other one? Either way a service to connect all these areas is need and I am glad the airport is already planning ahead with it.

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Friday, June 3, 2016 3:26 PM

I envy those who are able to conveniently use SunRail. I would love to ditch my I-4 commute into downtown Orlando each day, but it just doesn't make sense from where I live. If they ever expanded it to include service to MCO, I would absolutely do it. The biggest issue I hear about SunRail is it doesn't run on weekends or late evenings, making it limited to the 9 to 5 downtown commuters.

As for this report, I don't see a separate rail system going from I-Drive to MCO actually happening. As for the UO third gate, I'm intrigued but not about to start booking a flight (or in my case, driving a couple miles down Turkey Lake Road)

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Friday, June 3, 2016 8:26 PM

Yeah, the schedule for Sun Rail is kind of limiting, but a slam dunk if you can use it. My work will even pay for it (we're remote, but have an optional office downtown, a block from the station on South St.), but only one dude who lives in Lake Mary uses it. He loves it.

I wasn't around when it was being planned and developed, but I believe it was an existing rail line that is shared with one of the big operators. As such, I don't think they could run it over night or on weekends if they wanted to.

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Saturday, June 4, 2016 9:18 AM

I work just down the block on Central, and the South Street station would be a 5 minute walk for me. Unfortunately, the only real option for me to get on would be at the Sand Lake station, and even on the worst mornings of traffic, it would still be less efficient than driving on I4. I think the folks that live in the Winter Park and Seminole County side of town benefit from it greatly, and I think it's an awesome thing our city has, even if it's more limited than other cities.

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Saturday, June 4, 2016 10:22 PM

I live far enough off to the east side of Orlando that in the time it would take me to drive to a SunRail station I could just about drive to my destination. So for me its not practical at this time. I hope to one day see weekend/later hours so it could be used for events rather than parking downtown, thats likely the only way I'll be using it anytime soon.

I'd really love to one day see an East-West track of some kind, preferably running from UCF to Winter Garden. But considering the uphill battle to get the current system going (which used existing rails) I'm not holding my breath. I'll settle for a less awful public bus service?...

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