U.S. Rep. John Mica, a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, announced the FAA approval late Friday, with plans for a South Airport People Mover Complex and an intermodal transit facility.
“Without this FAA approval, there would be no airport expansion, nor would we be able to connect future transportation links,” Mica said in a statement. “The airport, which was originally constructed to handle 24 million passengers, and now accommodates nearly 35 million annually, would be left in a holding pattern without this approval.”
Gov. Rick Scott proposed in February spending $213.5 million over three years to develop a complex in Orlando to serve a combination of aviation, rental-car, private-vehicle, airport shuttle and rail transportation.
The Greater Orlando Aviation Authority expects to invest as much as $467.5 million in the multi-purpose project, which could eventually accommodate All Aboard Florida.
Community and resident groups, as well as politicians, are questioning the long-term impact of passenger rail service through the Treasure Coast and northern Palm Beach County.
Miami-to-Orlando service has scheduled for a 2016 launch, along with a Miami-to-West Palm Beach line.