Central Florida leads the drive to diversify transportation
Transportation executives on Wednesday crowned central Florida as the state’s leading pioneer in transportation diversification and expansion.
Speaking at a Southern Group Florida panel called Connecting Florida Cities, transportation leaders from both the public and private sectors hailed Orlando’s willingness to diversify transit with the future in mind.
Christine kefauver of Light line, a company that is developing a high-speed passenger rail system in Florida, said alternative travel options are critical to Florida’s growth for residents and tourists alike.
Caryn Lund of Lilium echoed the remarks, adding that forward-thinking leaders are a major factor in transport diversification. She credited the mayor of Orlando dyer buddy and Mayor of Orange County Jerry demings for helping attract the Germany-based vertiport company to Florida.
“For us, those are the fundamental three Ds around Orlando,” said Lund. “Data, Demings and Dyer”.
In total, Lilium officials plan to build a network of vertiports in central and southern Florida to include Orlando and Tampa.
The move, Lund explained, was justified in part by Central Florida’s growth, economic resilience and abundant workforce.
Beyond attracting and supporting diversification and expansion efforts, Orlando Transportation Director Tanya wilder said the city is setting more goals to ensure it is a “future-ready” city.
Among them, the city aims to eliminate deaths and serious injuries on Orlando’s roads by 2040 as part of the Vision Zero mission.
They also plan to expand bus transport routes, to integrate autonomous vehicles such as Beep and vertical take-off and landing options.
Present in several cities, including Lake Nona in Orlando, Beep provides the largest network of autonomous vehicles in the country.
Wilder said the city of Orlando is also looking to capitalize on the Central Florida rail system in the near future.
“I think the city of Orlando has always looked to rethink and invest in transportation options. SunRail is a perfect example, ”said Wilder. “We are committed to bringing SunRail to the airport and growing further. “