Trains May Be Coming To Jupiter!

Here in Jupiter we have the Florida East Coast (FEC) railway tracks which run along Alt A1A past communities such as Admirals Cove and Jonathan’s Landing. These tracks are used to haul small rocks mined from rock pits in Miami northward where they are used in making construction materials. Several times a day, very long and heavy trains make their way north with their white cargo. But these tracks have not been used for passengers since the 1960s.

Palm Beach, Broward and Dade Counties are all connected by a Tri-Rail passenger system which runs from south Miami to Mangonia Park in the middle of Palm Beach County, but no further north. Now, with mass transit on everyone’s mind, studies are underway to bring this train system further north to Jupiter.

Plenty of governmental authorities have gotten involved: the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council (TCRPC) presented a summary of studies and analysis, a study conducted by Florida’s Department of Transportation (the South Florida East Coast Corridor (SFECC) Study), and a Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) charrette have all decided on three possible locations for stations. These locations would be Indiantown Road, Toney Penna Drive, and Frederick Small Road or Donald Ross Road.

Although we do not have the mass transit systems of New York, Chicago or Los Angeles, using the existing tracks makes a lot of sense. In these metropolitan areas, subways and the ‘L’ take a lot of pressure off the roadways, and with gas predicted to reach $4 per gallon this spring, more and more people would like to have the option of using mass transit.

In California the trains run all along the coast and through the metropolitan areas and they are packed with travelers enjoying the scenery while listening to music, reading, or working on laptops.

Greyhound Bus Lines used to have an advertising slogan that said, ‘Take the bus and leave the driving to us’. Maybe not the bus, but riding a train is just as good. And fun, too!

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