The Brightline name is coming back, replacing the name Virgin Trains, according to a financial report issued Friday that also suggests a station at Walt Disney World may open soon after service arrives at Orlando International Airport.
The upscale, higher-speed train began operating in South Florida in early 2018 and, while operations are suspended now because of the pandemic, is scheduled to start service to Orlando’s airport in 2022.
Virgin’s worldwide empire of trains, planes and cruise boats has been in financial distress with the COVID-19 pandemic, according to media accounts.
“We will no longer use the Virgin brand following our parent’s termination of its licensing agreement with Virgin Enterprises Limited (together with its affiliates, “Virgin”),” the bond report states. “Virgin has no remaining affiliation with us, or parent or its affiliate.”
The bond report also provides details on the proposed extension from Orlando to Tampa, with a stop at Walt Disney World, which has been in engineering and design work since early this year.
“The extension of our system from the Orlando airport to the Disney station would also serve as the first phase of a potential future connection to Tampa,” the bond report states. Subject to permitting and Disney negotiations, “we anticipate opening the Disney station shortly after opening the Orlando airport station.”
An extension to Walt Disney World and Tampa also may stop at a SunRail station, which would finally provide a link between Central Florida’s commuter rail and Orlando’s airport.