Florida is one of the fastest growing states in terms of population. Recent data from the University of Florida’s Bureau of Economic and Business Research projects that Florida’s population will increase by 6 million for a total of nearly 26 million by the year 2030. More than half of this increase will occur in just 10 counties, with the majority of this growth taking place in Miami-Dade and Broward. As the second largest county, Broward’s population is currently estimated at 1.8 million and is expected to increase to 1.94 million by 2030. With this growth comes increased demands on infrastructure and the region must be prepared to meet this future growth.
Congestion on the roadways has been an increasing issue and steps must be taken now to address anticipated future growth. Virgin Trains USA, the only privately owned railroad in the United States, is one of the new and forward thinking modes of transportation to help address these issues. Trains currently run from Miami to West Palm Beach with a stop in Fort Lauderdale. Phase 2 will expand service to Orlando and Phase 3 will run from Orlando to Tampa. According to Virgin USA spokesperson, Ben Porritt, “Virgin Trains will be a transformative project that will help Florida stay economically competitive, bring thousands of jobs and tremendous economic impact to an already cramped state.”
Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport is the third fastest growing major airport in North America. Part of the attraction for airlines has been the efficiency of the airport and the proximity to major geographic regions and cruise ports. Individuals and companies view accessibility to efficient transportation as an important asset when considering South Florida for possible relocation.
Infrastructure improvements are a necessary component to fuel Florida’s economy as more people come to the state to work and live on a year around basis.