Martin County: Federal study of All Aboard Florida impacts flawed



Florida East Coast Railway bridge over the St. Lucie River, Stuart (Source:

The Palm Beach Post reports that Martin County officials on Tuesday said a federal study evaluating the environmental impacts of the All Aboard Florida project is flawed, and pointed to their own research which they say shows significantly more boaters travel under the St. Lucie River railroad bridge than previously estimated.

In a meeting with county commissioners Tuesday, Martin County officials said computer models used estimate boat traffic at the bridge as part of the Federal Railroad Administration’s environmental study of the All Aboard Florida project show boats stacked “bumper-to-bumper” waiting to traverse the 90-year-old bridge.  Officials say the water currents and a no-wake zone in the area make it impossible for boats to line up so close to each other.

The computer model also shows traffic moving side-by-side passed the span in both the east and west directions — something Martin officials say is impossible to do because the passage is so narrow.

In addition, Martin officials told the commission it takes approximately 20 minutes to open and close the railroad bridge because the span must be locked in place before a train can travel across it.

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