Orlando Sentinel's Dan Tracy talks with FOX35 about a privately funded magnetic train that keeps making news but not is very close to becoming a reality. (Video by FOX35)
The problem is, magnetic levitation trains are not serving the public in the U.S. anywhere yet. But the technology is evolving around the world.
Georgia businessman Tony Morris recently obtained approval from the Florida Department of Transportation to negotiate for right-of-way for the train.
That's a far cry from being a sure thing, despite recent headlines like, “Orlando to get nation’s first floating magnetic train line.”
Morris has been working on this for 20 years. His company, Georgia-based American Maglev, has financial backing from Spain-based GrupoACS.
Morris failed at previous attempts to build such a train, although a test train was built. On two ocassions, in Volusia County and in Norfolk, Va., millions in public dollars were spent.
But there is renewed interest in magnetic levitation trains, which have operated publicly in China, South Korea and Japan. NPR recently reported that Japan is working with U.S. officials on a plan to bring the technology here.
In an email, Morris told me he has received a flood of interest since recent headlines. No surprise there.
Morris said he is working on obtaining legal rights to the corridor for the train. He has said he will pursue the project without public money.
“We have nothing to report today, but we expect to provide details on the financing group as soon as agreements are signed,” Morris said in the email.
By the way, Morris is also shopping his idea for a maglev train again in Virginia Beach, according to a recent report.