President announces Disney-to-Legoland-to-Busch Gardens train
Well, that's the essence of what President Obama will announce Thursday in Tampa: More than a billion dollars for a high-speed train route linking Orlando and Tampa.
The interesting part for theme park fans is the route that the train is initially designed to take. It would start at the Orlando International Airport, then make stops at the Orlando Convention Center (a short bus hop to SeaWorld and Universal Orlando), Walt Disney World (near the end of World Drive, by Celebration), near Lakeland (not too far from Legoland Florida), and finally in Ybor City (a straight shot down the street from Busch Gardens Tampa).
Call this the Theme Park Express.
No word tonight on when the project would be completed, or if it is built in segments, when the first segments would be open.
Sweet! Is the President a closet Theme-Park enthusiast?
How funny. When I first heard about this high-speed train (many months ago) my first thought was, "NOW it'll be much easier to visit theme parks." (and I guess Obama agrees somewhat-- great minds think alike hee hee)
This is not unlike the San Diego/Los Angeles line that SD is supposed to get federal $$$ for. Depends on the stops, I guess.
Hoping the First Family will make a telegenic visit to orlando this summer.
A billion dollars?! Who's paying for this? (Oh ya, I am...) How much will a fare be to ride?
Very nice indeed.. Plus there is a college right near Busch in Tampa.. This will make travel for students easier..
We will all be long gone by the time this will be built. It has been in progress for nearly 10 years, and they havent done anything, havent purchased land, nothing. Dont hold your breath. This was a ploy to win Florida in 2012.
Sounds COOL! Can't wait to use this!
Glad to see that this finally will happen. The Orlando area has been after a bullet train for a while. Waste of money? depends on the final cost, the cost of using the train, and how much it's used. If a lot use it and it mostly pays for itself, traffic on the roads will be reduced, therefore reducing the maintenance costs on highways, off ramps...etc etc. The millions and millions that visit these parks every year have more of an effect on infrastructure than most would think, and there is potential for a large customer base.
Must be a sort-of "thank you" for his inception to
Wow! Legoland decision to buy the land must of been in large part cause of this. Great, great news. Surely the tourist will flock from Disney for a Day at Legoland with being able to ride the train. Wonder if there will be parking at each stop.
If the Lakeland station becomes a reality it might help, but a drive from Lakeland to Cypress Gardens is roughly 35-45 minutes according to Google Maps directions. I don't think it will help that much unless Legoland runs shuttle buses from the station to the park and back.
Robert, in all of your recent articles about Legoland Florida I think it's painfully obvious that you've never been to Cypress Gardens and you don't know much about its location.
Right now it costs me about $25 in gas for the round trip drive to Orlando from my area near the Gulf and driving it takes about 2 hours or less each way. I can never see the new high speed train being less than that in money or time. The Tampa Bay area has NO feeder rail lines to the proposed Ybor City end point (which is about 35 miles from my house), only buses that have to go through the same congested roads that cars do. I don't see how a high speed train can be an improvement to what we do now. I-4 has almost been completely redone to make it a smooth transit route between Tampa and Orlando.
This morning the fare was estimated at $29 going from end to end. The gov. is looking into making toll lanes in the middle of I4.
For the record, I've been to Cypress Gardens multiple times, as well as spending a good amount of time in Lakeland.
Suprised this happened already...
Yep herd about it today on tv when he was talking. He said this will create jobs and will be funded by some recovery fund for the joblose and economy. He must want this to happen said it in his speech wednsday night and on thursday again in another speech.
i dont see this making a big dent in the I4 or US192 traffic but there is no reason to not make it. More jobs, means more money, means more rides, means more churros!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I believe that this is a great idea but more thought to routes are needed. We depserately need one to downtown Orlando by the new Arena and the new Performing Arts Center and Church Street Station for commuters and toursits to get hte best bang for the spend here. I cannot fathom it not going into downtown after all the talk about the urban renewel desire that has been going on for the last few years by Mayors Dyer and Crotty. Please review these plans so that the commuters and tourists can see both downtown Tampa and Orlando or it will be a failure.
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