About The Task Force – Governor Rick Scott signed Executive Order 13-319 on November 1st, 2013 creating the East Central Florida Corridor Task Force.
The purpose of the Task Force is to evaluate and develop consensus recommendations on future transportation corridors serving established and emerging economic activity centers in portions of Brevard, Orange, and Osceola counties.
The Task Force is part of a broader statewide Future Corridors effort to coordinate future land uses and the supporting transportation network, and will serve as a pilot planning effort to be tested and evaluated for use in other future corridor planning efforts statewide.
Well planned communities, major transportation corridors, and protections of the state’s unique environmental and agricultural resources are critical to the state’s economic competitiveness and quality of life.
The Task Force will build upon the How Shall We Grow? regional vision supported by an analysis of land use, mobility, economic, environmental, water, and community issues in the study area.
The charge of the Task Force includes the identification of anticipated future development patterns and associated mobility and connectivity needs in portions of Brevard, Orange, and Osceola counties, as well as potential solutions for addressing these needs through coordinated planning and partnerships.
The Task Force will involve stakeholders and the public as it develops its recommendations.
The Task Force is made up of 13 members representing local governments, private landowners, and economic development, environmental, and agricultural interests in the study area.
The Task Force will be chaired by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity and will deliver an Action Report to Governor Scott by December 1st, 2014.
About the Study Area
Florida’s Future Corridors initiative is based upon a three-step process that includes a Concept Study for a potential corridor study area; a more detailed Evaluation Study for a corridor or segment within the study area; and more specific decisions about particular alignment(s) within a corridor through the Project Development and Environment process.
One corridor study area identified by the Florida’s Future Corridors initiative extends from Tampa Bay to the Atlantic Coast across 15 counties in the central part of Florida (“Tampa Bay-Central Florida Study Area”).
This study area is an emerging “superregion” that is now the 10th-largest region in the United States, with forecasts of strong growth over the next 50 years.
In 2013, a Future Corridor Concept Report was completed for the Tampa Bay-Central Florida Study Area. This Concept Study identified a regional connectivity gap between the Orlando International Airport and the southern Space Coast and recommended that a Pilot Evaluation Study be conducted to evaluate and build consensus around potential transportation corridors in the Orlando/Space Coast area.
The Pilot Evaluation Study would provide an opportunity to encourage high quality growth patterns and environmental stewardship through planning for large tracts of land under single ownership, while ensuring future mobility for people and freight and effective emergency response.
The Evaluation Study cited a need to protect environmental resources, including high-quality beaches, lakes, rivers, parks, forests, and preserves; headwaters for the Everglades and the St. Johns River; and wildlife and ecological corridors of statewide significance.
Selection of this study area for a Pilot Evaluation Study is supported by recent and ongoing conservation, land use, and transportation initiatives undertaken:
- In 2007 myregion.org completed a 2050 regional visioning process with stakeholders from the public, private, and civic sectors and input from nearly 20,000 residents of Brevard, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Polk, Seminole, and Volusia counties, culminating in adoption of the “How Shall We Grow?” vision and regional growth compact by representatives of 7 counties and 86 cities. The “How Shall We Grow?” vision identified the potential need for a new or enhanced multimodal corridor connecting Orlando to southern Brevard County.
- In 2012 the Osceola County Expressway Authority, established by the Florida Legislature in 2011, adopted a 2040 Master Plan that identifies potential new transportation corridors in the study area for the Pilot Evaluation Study.
- In 2012 Florida East Coast Industries, Inc., announced the formation of All Aboard Florida, LLC (“All Aboard Florida”), for the purpose of planning and establishing privately operated passenger rail service from Miami to Orlando on a route that would traverse the study area for the Pilot Evaluation Study.”
- Since 2013, Osceola County has been working with Farmland Reserve, Inc. (Desert Ranch) to develop a sector plan for a 130,000 acre holding in Osceola County known as the North Ranch Sector Plan.
This Pilot Evaluation Study furthers the State Comprehensive Plan, the Florida Strategic Plan for Economic Development, the 2060 Florida Transportation Plan, and other statewide plans that call for coordinated decision-making and investments to address Florida’s long-term economic development, environmental stewardship, community development, and infrastructure needs on a statewide and regional basis.
See the Resources page for additional resource documents related to this study area.
FDOT has developed a three stage process for planning future statewide corridors. The basic steps for each study area are:
- Complete a high-level Concept report to identify statewide connectivity and mobility needs in the study area; determine whether a significant transportation investment in the study area is consistent with statewide policies and available regional and community visions and plans for future growth; identify key community and environmental issues to be considered in future stages; and identify a framework for moving forward in the study area.
- Conduct an Evaluation of one or more segments of the full study area to identify and assess potential alternative multimodal solutions to the anticipated mobility and connectivity needs; work with partners to build consensus around potential solutions; and develop an action plan for future work on viable corridors.
- Use FDOT’s established Efficient Transportation Decision-Making and Project Development and Environment processes to conduct more detailed analyses of specific alternative corridor improvements, continue coordination with stakeholders, and advance projects into implementation.
North Ranch Sector Plan
Osceola County is preparing a long-term master plan pursuant to Section 163.3245, F.S., for 130,000 acres of the Deseret Ranch within Osceola County.
This proposed long-term master plan is intended to proactively plan for and preserve regionally significant economic opportunities, natural resources, and transportation corridors at a landscape scale.
Preparation of the Sector Plan is being closely coordinated with the work of the East Central Florida Corridor Task Force. Additional information about the North Ranch Sector Plan is available on the website of the Osceola County Planning Office, along with other information about the county’s Strategic Initiatives.
Florida Department of Economic Opportunity has more information about Florida’s overall Sector Planning Program.