Boca Raton approves construction of Brightline station

High-speed rail service, being rebranded as Virgin Trains USA, hopes to open Boca Raton station by end of next year

BOCA RATON, Fla. – Virgin Trains USA is pulling into Boca Raton.

The City Council late Tuesday unanimously approved a proposal to allow for construction of a Brightline train station downtown.

Council members voted to approve a lease for the 1.8 acres of land next to the city's downtown library.

Brightline, which is being rebranded as Virgin Trains USA, wants to begin construction early next year.

Currently, the high-speed rail service has stops in Miami, Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, but it will eventually expand into Orlando by 2022.

Miami-Dade County commissioners in October approved a plan for the construction of a Brightline station in Aventura.

Under the new proposal, Boca Raton will lease the land for $1 per deal and pay Brightline in semi-monthly installments to build a 400-space public parking garage, expected to cost about $12 million, according to the South Florida SunSentinel. Brightline will pay to replace any library parking spaces lost in construction and make 64 spaces available to library patrons. The city will pay for the rest of the garage and split the profits from it.

The new station is expected to open by the end of next year.