All Aboard Florida will impact Stuart traffic

Publish Date: 
Wednesday, August 6, 2014 - 8:15am

By Elizabeth Harrington Aug 5, 2014, WPTV NEWS There's good news and bad news for the city of Stuart.  All Aboard Florida sent the city a letter outlining how it could impact the area. The proposed high speed rail service will run from Orlando to Miami with a stop in West Palm Beach.

Right now freight trains shut down traffic periodically in Stuart.  The tracks cross five intersection in Stuart including an area known as confusion corner.

"There's a good reason that it's called confusion corner and that's because there's so many roads coming in to it," says city manager Paul Nicoletti.

It could get even more confusing.

"I think it would really cause a problem," says Nicoletti.

All Aboard Florida sent this letter to the city. It wants to shut down part of the intersection closing a turn lane between northbound Colorado Avenue and Dixie Highway. 

"My preference is to keep traffic flowing in that direction," says Nicoletti.

Nicoletti says Stuart hopes to find a way around that.  Business owners agree.

"As long as it's less confusing," says John Spoto, "That's really all that matters."

Spoto runs Spoto's Oyster Bar. He worries about parking. "We have to have parking," says Spoto. 

All Aboard Florida's letter had good news for Spoto and other business owners. The city won't lose any spaces.

There isn't much support on the Treasure Coast for All Aboard Florida. There's an online petition created by a group called Florida Not All Aboard. It has more than 24-thousand signatures.  People worry about the 16 additional trains on the tracks, traffic and there's no stop on the Treasure Coast.  Stuart has pitched the idea of creating a stop here.

"We look forward to continuing conversation with them and talk with them about development possibilities," says Nicoletti.