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Brightline Ridership Triples Expectations; Miami To Start By End Of April

Brightline Ridership Triples Expectations; Miami To Start By End Of April

Brightline passenger count has been much better than expected.

According to CEO Patrick Goddard, ridership in recent weeks has been triple what the company was expecting.

Service to Miami is now expected to start by the end of April, he said.

Goddard made his remarks at a Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce luncheon, according to the SFBJ.

Each train holds 240 passengers, and Brightline had been expecting most revenue to come from Miami to Fort Lauderdale. Analyst Fitch Ratings has said that the company can break even even if they only get 56% of their ridership forecast.

 

 

Last week, Las Olas Pix counted about 90 passengers exiting a Sunday afternoon train from West Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale:

 

 

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Jesus
Jesus

This is great news! I like how this is happening with private sector money with the government lending a hand. Why can’t we try this with Metrorail? My hunch is that people such as Norman Braman are paying politicians to not do so because of his car business but even Braman would benefit from having less cars in the area. Would make his life a lot more easy.

Also, would it really take three hours to go from Miami to Orlando? Why not less? Trains in countries that have yet to develop to our level have achieved getting people in trains that go more than 200 miles an hour. Why couldn’t we have this?

Anonymous
Anonymous

I doubt California ever implements HSR from SJ to SF and it too will be limited to 79mph. The time savings from PB to Orlando would not be worth the extra billions spent in the age of iPhones and laptops with Wi-Fi. So it is counterintuitive but speed is less important today when people can be productive anywhere they can access the Internet.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Nonsense.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Lol, you would rather build HSR and have it running in 2029 than have a train that completes the route a few minutes slower in 2019. People like you are so ridiculous!

Anonymous
Anonymous

Because high-speed trains require electrified rail roads that are completely separated from automobile traffic. This would cost a lot of money to implement, and Florida politicians do not want to take the risk. Medium-speed trains like Brightline are a much more sensible option, in my opinion.

Anonymous
Anonymous

The nice thing is about these mid-speed trains is that you can always upgrade them down the line!

Wouldn’t be surprised to see a Brightline electrification project a decade or two from now.

Marc306
Marc306

Is that ancient thinking mayor Giminez listineing to this? Rail works! It’s your government that is a complete and utter failure!

Anonymous
Anonymous

Good to see people are riding (I have, and it’s great), but I can’t help but be skeptical of the notion that they’ve “tripled ridership expectations” when they won’t say what expectations are, nor what the current ridership is lol. All other public transit agencies you can see the ridership. I doubt Brightline will ever share actual ridership numbers.

According to the Fitch bond rating report, they’re projecting Brightline’s ridership will be around 907,000 rides in 2018, with a stabilization of 2.3M rides in 2020. Tri-Rail does about 4.3M rides per year, but of course has more stops and a longer track record of service. The Miami leg will surely boost ridership (for Brightline and Tri-Rail). But I’ve watched Brightline roll thru downtown FTL many times with train cars with one or two people inside, so who really knows how they’re actually doing. That being said, if you haven’t ridden yet go check it out!

Anonymous
Anonymous

Not to mention that the tickets are $10 Ft. to W Palm Beach. Saying that ridership is 3xs more than expectations is just good marketing.
The proof will be end of year 2019, when routes are stabalized.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Hope they don’t cover all the Windows with ads like the busses so you can’t see out.

Anonymous
Anonymous

PROPAGANDA MINISTRY IS ALIVE AND WELL. No such thing as a public transportation system that makes a profit. Low ridership will be a drain on public resources. 6 people already dead because of Brightline. Trains going over 100 mph have no place in the middle of cities and towns. Move All Aboard Florida west of town.

nick
nick

Hoorah! congrats. The more light rail, metromover there is the better the air quality and easier it is to travel around.

Anonymous
Anonymous

They will break even at 56%. 90 passengers is only 37%. Another train system looking to get government subsidies.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Even if it is 100% government subsidised, at least it is already built and running. Otherwise will be stuck for ten more years waiting while our local authorities try to please the suburban activists, who will oppose anything that smells progress. Perhaps, The Ft. Lauderdale Wave Street Car is a good example of how BabyBoomers perpetuate their suburban mentality to the rest of the community.

Anonymous
Anonymous

It’s a great project that will be hugely successful. Unfortunately it only carries a tiny fraction of people who use cars.

But it’s pathetic that it took this long and that it doesn’t go faster. Japan opened extensive high-speed (130 mph) rail in 1964…54 years ago…only 20 years after we dropped two nuclear bombs on them. Just no excuses but horrible leadership and decisions for decades..which are still continuing.

Anonymous
Anonymous

The Shinkansen bankrupted Japan National Railways to the extent that it had to be privatized in the 1980s, with repercussions still existing today with pension payments, bonds, etc. The next line isn’t due for operation until 2037, if everything goes to plan. So it’s not like mishaps are anything unique to our crummy leadership.

Still, dismantling all the commuter streetcars making cities less walkable, along with the obvious suburban sprawl, killed railways and the cities. The Japanese government and private railroad operators actually supported dismantling tracks and replacing the routes with buses taking freeways. If it wasn’t for the head of JNR convincing people HSR was a better bet, things would be a lot different today. Conversely, if Eisenhower wasn’t so obsessed with freeways, and railways were supported in tandem, I wonder how things would’ve ultimately turned out? Maybe Penn Central wouldn’t have collapsed, intercity services connecting regions would be upgraded, and would ultimately branch out to the commuter scale so cities would stay walkable.

Anonymous
Anonymous

I wonder how many people realize that when this idea was first announced it was branded as the “Party Train?”

The developers never mentioned anything about this being “Commuter Rail.”

Watcher
Watcher

Why does brightline need to build its track to Orlando along the beachline expressway or go through the treasure coast. There are already tracks in use in the middle of the state that Amtrak uses. They may Evan provide a faster and safer route.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Total BS How many people are riding daily????

Anonymous
Anonymous

TRAINS DON’T WORK IN ‘MURICA, GUYS! WE NEED MORE ROADS FOR SELF-DRIVING CARS.

…or so they said!

Anonymous
Anonymous

This is all marketing BS, the train line will go bankrupt, i have studies their bond offering and their projections long term will not be met. here is the simple problem: In NYC people commute on trains from the suburbs to offices in Manhattan. Brightline does not connect “houses to jobs”. Wealthy suburbs, such as Boca Raton, Parkland, Delray Beach, Wellington, etc are not near the 3 trains stops. Nobody from Boca or Parkland is driving into downtown WPB or Ft Lauderdale to get to Miami, they will simply drive to Miami. Brightline’s system simply does not connect the right places, as the trains do in other cities, to have enough long term value and produce the revenue they need to avoid bankruptcy.

Anonymous
Anonymous

This is exactly right. No one is driving from the suburbs to ride Brightline to fo to work each day. It is much easier in S. Florida to drive the full route from (for example) the Broward suburbs to a job downtown, though I know many that take the existing very efficient commuter busses from W Broward to downtown Miami and would never switch.

You’d never drive to get on this Brightline intercity train to get to work. Furthermore Miami, FtL, and WPB are very distinct cities in their own right. Working ppl choosing to live near any of these downtowns are working near or in these downtowns. No one in S. Florida (for example) lives in downtown Miami but chooese to work in Downtown FTL. There maybe a few, but very few ppl. Brightline is extremely ill-conceived.

Anonymous
Anonymous

You do know people drive to the train stations on the commuter rails up north right ?

Anonymous
Anonymous

The point OP is trying to make is that it’s a 20-60 minute drive into either downtown WPB or FTL to catch the train… not worth it for people who live outside the urban core. But, this is not commuter rail so that’s not quite relevant.

Anonymous
Anonymous

That’s because this is intercity rail, not commuter rail. I agree with you, though, South FL needs more and better commuter options along the east coast tracks, like Tri-Rail.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Except it isn’t a commuter service, it’s intercity. Apples to oranges, pal.

Anonymous
Anonymous

It will add a commuter component in time. Logic dictates that Brightline will soon subsume the coastal link…. the second rail track is already in place