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$856 million light rail could link Wellington to West Palm Beach

The Palm Beach Transportation Planning Agency has proposed the construction of a light-rail transit line that would run along a 13-mile stretch of Okeechobee Boulevard and State Road 7, connecting the Mall at Wellington Green to downtown West Palm Beach. This project could begin as early as 2025.

$856 million light rail could link Wellington to West Palm Beach

The project aims to alleviate traffic congestion, improve air quality, reduce traffic accidents, and revitalize older residential and commercial areas along the rail line's path. The study predicts that the rail line could lead to significant redevelopment within a 2-mile buffer zone of the corridor, particularly near its 17 stops. For instance, the State Road 7 and Okeechobee station could potentially generate 1,300 new homes, 1 million square feet of commercial property, 5,600 new jobs, and over $300 million in additional property-tax revenue by 2045. Since much of the land along the corridor is underutilized, it is ideal for redevelopment.

Neilson, one of the report's authors, envisions a development similar to The Square or Mizner Park around the State Road 7-Okeechobee station, which he believes is a necessary step towards creating live, work, and play communities in the county.

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