By KYLE HIGHTOWER
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - Central Florida will learn a lot about its transportation with the upcoming launch of the SunRail commuter train.
The train begins taking its first passengers in May for the initial 32-mile phase of the project after years of debate about its viability in an area where residents have depended on their cars to travel between cities.
Gov. Rick Scott passed on federal money for a high-speed train from Tampa to Orlando, but approved the $1.2 billion SunRail in 2011 after being convinced of hits jobs creation benefits and potential to alleviate traffic on oft-congested Interstate 4.
But now federal money for the second phase slated for 2016 is in peril because of potential budget cuts.
Still officials remain optimistic that SunRail can be a game changer for the area.
Follow Kyle Hightower on Twitter at http://twitter.com/khightower
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.