Wes Edens, one of the founders of the Fortress Investment Group, has been managing the operations of Brightline since it started operations back in January 2018. One of the reasons why he built the rail system is because of the heavy traffic in Southern Florida, and he wanted to help the population by building a transport system that would be more efficient than driving or flying. Brightline is now considered as the first rail network owned by a private organization, and according to Wes Edens, they are now trying to study the possibility of building the same system in other congested cities across the United States. Read the article about Fortress at The Wall Street Journal.
To further the development of the company, Wes Edens decided to partner with the Virgin Group, a conglomerate owned by Richard Branson. As a part of the contract, Brightline will be changing its name into Virgin Trains USA, and the transition will be completed in 2019. Despite the change in the brand name, the Virgin Group will only be acquiring a small portion of the company, and the Fortress Investment Group will still manage the majority of Brightline. The current railroad network serviced by Brightline can be found between West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, and Miami, which is home to millions of people. Wes Edens revealed that an extension of the railroad network is possible, and they will be building it up to Tampa and Orlando. Other construction procedures will be taking place in Las Vegas as well, to serve the Southern California area.
Wes Edens and Richard Branson have a lot of visions for the expansion of the railway network. Transforming the country’s transport network is what the Virgin Group is aiming for. Richard Branson stated that his company changed the way Americans look at air travel, and he promises that with the partnership between his company and the Fortress Investment Group, rail travel in the United States will significantly change. People from Florida felt delighted now that a fast and efficient railroad network from the Fortress Investment Group is servicing thousands of commuters each day. They are also looking forward to having the major cities in the state connected in the future through the extension project from Brightline.