Jacksonville, Florida

From nycsubway.org


Jacksonville Skyway vehicle on a test run at San Marco, October 1998. Photo by Bob Pickering.


The Skyway Express automated system was conceived as way to shuttle people around downtown Jacksonville and also be a link in a future transit system many years down the road. The first segment opened in 1989 and operated about one mile from a large parking area near the old Union Station, now a convention center to downtown Jacksonville.

The system used automated rubber tired people-movers and was the first phase of the project. After several years of operation, the system was closed in the late 1990's for expansion. During this time the guideway was converted to a monorail beam and a planned extension across the St. Johns River to San Marco, as well as through downtown to the FCCJ campus were constructed.

The new expanded system reopened in November of 1998. This new system included an automated monorail consisting of small two car trainsets, the same design used at Newark airport and also the Miami Metrozoo, though Miami's are operator driven, and Newark's feature several cars per train. The route consists of a main route from old Union Station through downtown to FCCJ. A branch splits off in downtown, crosses the St. Johns River in the middle of the Acosta highway bridge to San Marco on the south side of Jacksonville.

A final leg off of this extension to include two more stations was opened in September 2000, completing the system. Trains that run from the south side join the main in downtown and run all the way to FCCJ, the current northern end of the route. Trains from Union Terminal also run to FCCJ. One wishing to travel from the southside to Union Terminal must change trains in downtown. The system is just over 2 miles in length.

The switching systems to direct trains from one route to another are complicated but efficient, and can be easily seen from trains and stations.

The system has been criticized by politicians and the highest ridership is usually during the lunch hour. Other people use the monorail as it is cheaper to park and ride, rather than use one of the expensive garages in downtown.

Long-range plans call for a light rail and commuter rail systems to end at Union Station. The Skyway Express would serve as the link for people traveling downtown.

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Official Site - Jacksonville Transportation Authority. Official site of the JTA, operator of the Skyway, including schedules, maps, fares, and more!

Page Credits

By Bob Pickering. Route Map by Seth Morgan.

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