AAF West Palm Beach to Miami, Florida: Supplemental Environmental Assessment – West Palm Beach Vehicle Maintenance Facility
The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) evaluated the potential environmental and related impacts of constructing and operating an intercity passenger rail service proposed by All Aboard Florida - Operations LLC (AAF) between West Palm Beach and Miami, FL. FRA and AAF conducted an environmental review in 2012/2013, including preparing and issuing both an Environmental Assessment (EA) (Environmental Assessment and Section 4(f) Evaluation for the All Aboard Florida Passenger Rail Project West Palm Beach to Miami, Florida) and a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI). Those documents can be found here.
Initial evaluation of environmental impacts for the EA and FONSI included a Vehicle Maintenance Facility (VMF) to support AAF passenger service at an existing rail maintenance yard in Fort Lauderdale (Andrews Yard), which Florida East Coast Railway, L.L.C. (FECR) owns and operates. However, the Andrews Yard location is unavailable in a configuration necessary for AAF’s use at this time; therefore, AAF has identified an alternative location. A Supplemental EA was prepared regarding potential environmental impacts associated with the VMF at the West Palm Beach (WPB) Rail Yard, and compared those to the impact analyses conducted for the originally proposed VMF location at the Andrews Yard in Fort Lauderdale. This evaluation considered the potential for physical, economic, social, cultural, and biological impacts to the environment, and included analyses and modeling results evaluated for current and future operations at the WPB Rail Yard. A finding of No Significant Impact was issued on January 29, 2015 for the alternative WPB Rail Yard location of the vehicle maintenance facility.