Connectivity is the best word for what the Brightline high-speed railsystem gives South Florida, but the billion-dollar boost to state GDP and the environmental benefits of low-emission trains running in an existing corridor are amazing, too.

For the Palm Beach, Florida, Chamber of Commerce, rail service means that businesses have better access to a larger pool of quality workers and station areas often become hubs of economic activity.

From the perspective of Broward County planners, providing access to jobs in downtown Miami for people who can’t afford to live there is an important benefit of rail service. Having reliable transit improves quality of life as well.

Florida rail advocates cite connectivity, vitality and prosperity as benefits to the community and say rail built within existing corridors ultimately is less expensive than widening roads, building bridges and pouring concrete and asphalt.

A national leader in building rail systems says that getting people onto transit that isn’t affected by traffic congestion is a major boost to their quality of life and that economic growth always accompanies a rail project.

When Raleigh Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin talks about the future of her city and the ever-growing Triangle, she tries to get people to picture how amazing it will be to have a regional mass transit network increasing access to opportunities for everyone – and then to picture life without it.

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