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Monday, January 24, 2022

Marion County residents share thoughts on Ocala’s transportation needs

In response to recent Letters to the Editor discussing Ocala’s transportation needs, Marion County residents wrote in and shared their thoughts on the topic:

“Yes, I would love to have a train here in Ocala. I have a daughter that I would love to visit in West Palm, and to be able to go to Orlando,” says Ocala resident Maria Garcia.

“Yawn, the same thing again. Listen up people, we do not want noisy airplanes flying over our homes at all times. We have that already with choppers and small planes, we do not need any more. So before you move to Ocala or anywhere, check the place out first.
Does it have restaurants, airports, nightlife, trains, etc? If it does not, find a city that does have these things for you. This way, you do not try to change the true way Marion County, Horse Capital of the World is,” says Ocala resident Marta Varnell.

“Who can I contact about starting a small air shuttle service from Ocala International Airport throughout Florida?” asks Kenneth Hollenbach, retired American Airlines Captain and Ocala resident.

“My husband and I like to take short and overnight trips by train, as we just like to be on a train. We moved to the Ocala area in 2014 and we’re sad to see a closed train station. We have driven to DeLand, Palatka, and Jacksonville just to hop on the train for a fun day of riding on the rails. We would love to have Amtrak stop in Ocala. We don’t even need a station attendant,” says Susan Grimstead, Sparr resident.

“While I have been here for only a year, cities need to look at possible increases in population on a master plan. In this master plan based on growth, rail and plane can be incorporated and implemented. Commercial plane growth would not be feasible at this time due to Ocala being in the middle from Gainesville and Orlando. Whereas a light rail line would be feasible from Gainesville running through Ocala to Orlando, connecting these cities and reducing traffic on the interstate system. Until this happens, Amtrak could provide service in the interim to these cities with grants from the federal government,” says Ocala and Silver Springs Shores resident Millard Hall.

Would you like to share your thoughts with us? Share them in a comment or by writing a Letter to the Editor.

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