Virgin Train Station Connected By Bridge To Aventura Mall Set To Open By Next Year

Virgin Trains (Brightline) is working to expedite construction of a new station connected to Aventura Mall, according to the Herald.

A passenger bridge would cross Biscayne Boulevard and West Dixie Highway to the station, which will be built on four acres at 19825 NE 26th Ave. The bridge will connect to the Aventura Mall bus station, making it a regional transit hub.

The new station would a maximum of $76 million including land and construction, and could be paid for by Miami-Dade taxpayers. Virgin is in contract to buy the land, but is asking for Miami-Dade to fund both the purchase of the land and construction costs. Funding would come from the county’s half-percent transportation surtax on retail, while the city of Aventura will contribute $4 million.

Tickets would cost 35 percent less than a Virgin ticket to Fort Lauderdale as part of the deal. From downtown Miami, the cost would be $9.75 in the cheapest class of service.

Tri-Rail has also written a letter to the county requesting access to the station, but it isn’t clear if Virgin will allow it.

A vote on the deal by Miami-Dade commissioners is likely to take place at a special meeting next week, unless it can be pushed as a last minute add on item at a meeting tomorrow.

 

 

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Anonymous

If we are paying for it Virgin shouldn’t be able to tell the taxpayers Tri-rail or Metrorail can’t stop there.

Anonymous

Meterorail cannot stop there but Tri-rail should be allowed.

William

Yeah – They should allow access to trirail. Period.

suomynona

Except for that whole part about Virgin/FECR owning the tracks.

Anonymous

Then they can build their own @#$%@@ station.

transplant

So Aventura, which is within Miami Dade County, is about half the distance to Downtown Fort Lauderdale, yet only a 35% discount?

A $10 one-way fare for a 15 minute train ride is ludicrous!!!! AND the county is going to offer a $75M subsidy (pre overrun costs)?

Without even a commitment from Virgin to allow the affordable option, Tri Rail ($2.50 fare within Miami Dade) to use the route?

Oh and they’re rushing everything under the disguise of real estate pressure. Oh yes, that blazing hot real estate market. ???

Corruption at it’s finest.

Anonymous

Typical Gimenez jam job.

Anonymous

By the way, who owns that land and how much of a profit are they making?

Anonymous

Virgin Trains is a money loser. You reduce fares to $2.50, and that will necessitate even larger taxpayer subsidies. I can sympathize with the premise, though.

marc

If Miami-Dade is contributing that amount of money they better negotiate a lower fare than what’s being reported and allow for Tri Rail use as well. $9.75 each way is ridiculous.

Anonymous

Yes it should be the same as Tri-Rail would be around $2.50.

Anonymous

Fares that cheap only work if transit is subsidized, I agree Tri-rail should be allowed as a cheaper option so passengers have the choice to take what is essentially first class or economy.

Anonymous

As opposed to a $76 million capital subsidy to build the station????

Anonymous

Could be worth it if alcohol is served by scantily clad chicks.

Anonymous

Build the Coastal Link. Don’t subside a private rail line that doesn’t provide relief to local residents. No vision in any of our leadership.

Anonymous

It’s called “palanca”

marc

Problem is, to build the Coastal Link, this private rail lines parent company owns the ROW so Virgin could probably block any access to a Coastal Link.

Anonymous

That wasn’t how the deals were made when Brightline got the go-ahead.

marc

Lol like deals always stick in Miami-Dade.

Anonymous

Virgin Trains is dreading when Tri-rail finally rolls directly to downtown. They agreed initially as a way to get public money for MiamiCentral, but they are in no rush to finish positive train control work to allow Tri-rail to start direct downtown service. I doubt they allow Tri-rail access to this station.

peej

So much for all of that “no public funding”…

I’m all for an Aventura Station, but not by the means of raiding the coffer of funds intended for MetroRail expansion, for a train ride costing 4 times as much.

The City of Aventura’s $4mil contribution seems laughable compared to the utility gained from this added stop.

Anonymous

Hate to say it but Aventura probably doesnt want the stop given it will provide more access to their “enclave”

Anonymous

Pretty sure the Aventura Mall, ie Sofer, is going to be in favor.

suomynona

Wrong.

Anonymous

that’s insane that the taxpayers have to pay for this. I understand tri-rail, but virgin trains?! this whole we have to do it really quick line also seems like a scam to shake down the taxpayers.

Anonymous

Commissioners: No Tri-rail, No Station!!!

suomynona

Bingo. Either allow Tri-Rail or implement the Virgin equivalent (ie, essentially the same # of stops, frequency, fare $, etc).

Anonymous

WELCOME BACK TNM!!!

Anonymous

So let me get this straight, we have no money to expand Metrorail or Metromover yet we have $76 million to spend just so that rich S. Americans can shop at Aventura while avoiding traffic. Makes sense.

marc

$76 million is enough to get you new uniforms for the Metrorail employees. It wouldn’t begin to make a dent in any MR or MM expansion.

Anonymous

There needs to be a Fort Lauderdale airport stop!!

Interested

If the story is accurate, why do taxpayers have to pay for infrastructure costs to benefit private, for profit corporations. Won’t they make their money back thru ticket sales? Will taxpayers own the station?

Anonymous

Because the politicians of this town are lazy, corrupt and without a plan or long term vision.

They see a priv company come in and do the job they should have years ago and now they plop our money down so they can claim THEY make a coastal link. And it will ensure no actual coastal link will ever get built there to compete.

Anonymous

Taxpayers will “own” the station while allowing this private company to keep our actual publicly owned train off their tracks. great deal.

Anonymous

very nice. Also, will be next to a brand new office tower!!

Anonymous

Virgin trains are not a mass transit system.

Anonymous

If I’m understanding that rendering correctly, the plan is to create a bus terminal on the West side of Dixie, directly adjacent to the tracks. So the bridge is really just to allow passengers to get from the Northbound side to the Southbound side, not to connect it to any existing infrastructure.

Also, on an unrelated note, if this is going to be publicly funded, then Virgin should have to allow access to Trirail.

Anonymous

The render is always subject to change, it’s in writing that the bridge will cross Biscayne and dixie…yes there are buses in the render at the station but aventura has its own bus area so if they are accurate on the writing it will be connecting the station to there…

Anonymous

Makes sense to actually have transit where people dont need to uber afterward.

Anonymous

Using taxpayers money to benefit a limited group of Miami residents, who happen to live in one if the county’s wealthiest municipalities, while the rest is forced to pay higher highway tolls. Carlos Gimenez will do whatever it takes to avoid investing in a mass transit system.
Now, this moron wants to run for Congress!!!

Anonymous

So…let me get this straight…the well heeled and perfumed Aventura target demo is going to ride the train, cross the bridge over West Dixie/Biscayne, trudge through the parking lot in the heat in their expensive shoes, walk the mall and then…. back through the mall, through the parking lot, up to the bridge and back on the train WITH THEIR ARMS FULL OF SHOPPING ?!?! Bwwaaahahahahaha !

marc

Brightline is for tourists, period.

Anonymous

and this negates my point how ??

Michael

The whole concept of Brightline was to be a limited stop service. This could work, but they need extra tracks for bypass. The Orlando service is also meant to compete with air service and if the train stops at every station, then the advantage of using a train is weakened versus air. Hopefully, they’ll have bypass tracks for an express train from downtown Miami to Orlando.

Anonymous

Again, Virgin trains will not allow Tri-rail on their track. Affordable commuter rail is a no-go on the FEC. These tracks will be for the “have alls”, not the working stiffs.

https://www.miamiherald.com/news/business/article235688317.html

Anonymous

This will be a great alternative to Uber. Fantastic!!!

Anonymous

This is AMAZING! DO IT!!!!

Corrupt Much?

Why aren’t the owners of the Aventura Mall paying for this train station? How many corrupt lawyers and lobbyists were hired by the Sofers?

Anonymous

if its 9.75 round trip thats not bad. Loving tri rail requesting access even though they cant get their shit together on what they have available now.

Anonymous

I think that 9.75 is one way.

Anonymous

Well, glad to see Metromover wasn’t extended there as it would have been free.

Anonymous

Metromover could be extended to Little Haiti

Anonymous

the current state of Metromover could not go to Aventura… It would take at least 4 hours plus there would need to be more seating options.

Anonymous

We’re finally getting stations, so why all the whining? I know it’s no free Metromover powered by shore power with underline bike lanes, but beggars can’t be choosers.

Anonymous

You don’t care tax dollars are funding a private for-profit enterprise. Rick Branson, is that you?

Shawn Kouri

The train tracks doesn’t go through Aventura Mall parking lot. Does it?

Anonymous

“CONNECTED BY BRIDGE TO AVENTURA MALL” = read the headline