Many transformational projects are under construction within our region that will make a major difference in how people commute. These range from addressing highway congestion, to providing transportation options, to connecting Florida’s coasts with a multi-use trail.
Since the first cars traveled on I-4 in the mid-1960s, the highway has served as the backbone of Central Florida’s road network. The $2.3 billion, 21-mile reconstruction and widening of I-4 from Kirkman Road to SR 434 – called I-4 Ultimate – began in 2015 and is anticipated to be complete in 2021. This section of I-4 carries about 200,000 trips per day. When completed, the segment will include four tolled express lanes in addition to non-toll lanes. For more information on the project and construction timelines, visit the official I-4 Ultimate website.
The region’s commuter rail is expanding to serve more riders. SunRail Phase 2 South is under construction and will add 17.2 miles and four additional stations to the system, one in Orange County and three in Osceola. This segment will be operational in early 2018. Phase 2 North will add one station and 12 miles, linking DeBary to DeLand in Volusia County. Funding is being actively sought for Phase 2 North. Additionally, a link to the Orlando International Airport is now being studied. Learn more about riding and expansion plans at the SunRail website.
A roadway that takes particular care to lessen environmental impacts around the Wekiva River, the Wekiva Parkway (SR 429) will complete the toll beltway around Central Florida. In addition to offering travel alternatives and relieving congestion, the 25-mile project includes setting aside more than 3,400 acres for conservation. This project is anticipated to be complete in 2021. To learn more about the project and construction timelines, visit the Wekiva Parkway website.
Coast to Coast Connector
Linking St. Petersburg on Florida’s Gulf coast to Titusville on the Atlantic Ocean, the Coast to Coast Connector is a major priority. The trail is part of a statewide system that encourages residents and visitors to enjoy Florida’s natural beauty while getting some exercise. When complete, the 250-mile trail will be the state’s longest paved trail. To learn more, visit the Florida Greenways and Trails website.
Osceola County Expressway Authority Master Plan
Osceola County’s population is expected to double by the year 2040. To prepare for new residents as well as continuing growth in tourism, Osceola County Expressway Authority’s 2040 Master Plan lays out a beltway system of new roads. Poinciana Parkway, the first piece of the master plan under construction, opened its first segment in April 2016. The next phase is expected to open by fall 2016. To learn more about the master plan, visit the OCX website.
LYMMO Expansion: Lime Line
Downtown Orlando’s LYMMO bus rapid transit system continues to expand. The 2.1-mile Lime Line extension is under construction. It will add nine stops, connecting the Parramore and Callahan neighborhoods to the Central Business District, SunRail, U.S. Courthouse, FAMU College of Law, State Office Complex, Amway Center and the Creative Village. The project is expected to be complete by the end of 2016. For more information, visit the LYMMO website.
Orlando International Airport Intermodal Terminal Facility
The Orlando International Airport serves more than 40 million domestic and international travelers in the course of a year – a number that is expected to steadily increase. As part of a $1.3 billion expansion, the Intermodal Terminal Facility will link passengers through a regional rail hub, connect the North Terminal with the future South Terminal, and provide rental cars, parking, bus, and ground transportation services. Learn more about the airport expansion at the Orlando International Airport website.
Private passenger rail service is returning to Florida as Brightline connects Orlando to West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Miami via high speed rail. The train service will effortlessly accommodate travelers, providing comfort and reliability. Initially, Brightline plans to launch five four-car train sets, each with the capacity to carry 240 passengers. Learn more about this project by visiting the Brightline website.