Brightline Stations/Virgin Trains USA
ARCHITECTS: Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP and Zyscovich Architects | INTERIORS: Rockwell Group | CONTRACTORS: Moss Construction and Suffolk Construction
Brightline, a state-of-the-art, high-speed passenger rail train, unveiled Virgin MiamiCentral in the spring of 2018. This 11-acre intermodal development in the heart of downtown currently serves Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach, with plans to extend to Orlando.
The train provides Florida residents, tourists, and other visitors a modern, comfortable, and business-conducive transportation alternative. Owned by Florida East Coast Industries (FECI), it is the only privately owned, operated, and maintained passenger rail system in the United States.
The goal behind the Brightline experience is to ease congestion on Florida’s busy highways and interstates, decrease the stress caused by driving and traffic, and encourage travelers and residents to explore and experience more of Florida.
Brightline Station Bathrooms
Neo-Metro® SLAB-Edge® Basins and Dyson® Airblade™ Taps
Neo-Metro® SLAB-Edge® basins and Dyson® Airblade™ Wash+Dry taps were sourced for the restrooms that service the Brightline stations in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach.
With Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP and Zyscovich Architects overseeing the design and planning process and Rockwell Group handling the interiors, the project achieved Brightline’s overall brand directive of keeping the trains and facilities hospitality-focused.
Learn more about the SLAB-Edge™
Eric Claussen, Vice President of Design and Construction, served as overall project manager for each station. “Brightline is a forward-thinking, contemporary brand, and we attempt to elevate and outfit our stations in the best way whenever possible,” he said. “Neo-Metro and Dyson complement this vision very well and allow for broad accessibility to all visitors who use our trains and facilities.”
Each Brightline station features, at minimum, a set of three restrooms: one women’s, one men’s, and one family. Built by Suffolk Construction, Virgin MiamiCentral is outfitted with one set on the ground floor and two sets on the mezzanine level.
Each of the men’s and women’s restrooms are furnished with nine SLAB-Edge basins and Dyson Airblade Wash+Dry faucets. Additional basins and taps are provided in the ADA stalls and family restrooms.
The Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach stations, built by Moss Construction, also boast restrooms in the concourse. The men’s and women’s restrooms here are outfitted with larger Neo-Metro SLAB-Edge basins.
Completed in mid-2017, introductory passenger service between Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach began in January 2018.
The stations are sizable, with the interiors of Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach measuring 60,000 square feet each, including station and platform. Virgin MiamiCentral is even larger—a complex in excess of three million square feet, plus an additional 180,000 square feet designated for retail and on-site food and beverage.
Why NEO-METRO: Solid Surface Basins for Accessibility & Durability
Brightline stations function as compact mini-metropolises for their passengers, visitors, and employees. Restrooms are a key component which not only must accommodate all visitors by meeting ADA requirements, but also streamline guests’ visits to ensure they reach their trains or waiting vehicles on time.
Cast as one seamless piece out of soy-based solid surface material, Neo-Metro’s SLAB-Edge basins feature clean lines and easy installation. The attractively sleek trap enclosure conceals all plumbing fixtures while also allowing easy access for maintenance. In addition, the non-porous solid surface material is scratch-resistant and easy to clean.
Minimizing the amount of water on the floor greatly reduces the risk of dangerous slips and falls, and this was the primary factor in the selection of both products—followed by their proven durability and contemporary aesthetic. The SLAB-Edge deck with integral basin creates a seamless transition from sink to surface and features no-drip edges, an integral overflow, and a grid strainer.
The Dyson Airblade Wash+Dry further reduces dripping and spillage by allowing guests to quickly dry their hands without ever leaving the sink.
While station restrooms are still furnished with paper towels for those visitors who prefer them, their usage is considerably lessened.
With stations open seven days a week, sustainable, functional, and reliable restrooms are a major component to the success of the Brightline experience. Its central location and connections to local public transit mean Virgin MiamiCentral sees a large number of daily visitors.
Brightline—soon to be Virgin Trains USA—aims to reinvent train travel in America, and Neo-Metro is proud to have contributed to this goal. Their selection of the SLAB-Edge basin will be critical to the long-term success and viability of these public spaces as the Brightline becomes a more sought-after alternative to driving.