Historic City News watched as City Planning and Building Director Mark Knight answered questions last night for the City Commission regarding an effort to establish an Amtrak station in the city.
Knight said standard protocol for Amtrak when locating a station is to have the local government maintain the facility, while Amtrak builds and operates the station.
Commissioners agreed Monday to maintain the building and grounds if an Amtrak passenger train station within the city becomes a reality.
While St. Augustine City Commissioners endorsed the idea, they also learned that the Airport Authority has obtained a $75,000 grant to perform a feasibility study evaluating the creation of a multimodal transportation center including a train depot on the west side of US 1 at a location opposite the airport.
Amtrak and the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) plan to apply for stimulus funding to restore intercity passenger service on the FEC Corridor from Jacksonville to Miami.
As previously reported by Historic City News, Commissioner Nancy Sikes-Kline, who is the city’s representative on the Northeast Florida Transportation Planning Organization board, announced that the TPO has approved “study funding” for the airport location — one of three considered for an Amtrak location here.
Other locations considered are an area off King Street and US 1 and the former Florida East Coast station at San Marco and US 1; most recently used by the Department of Motor Vehicles.