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Front Page » Top Stories » Sen. Bill Nelson in Brickell Avenue Bridge battle

Sen. Bill Nelson in Brickell Avenue Bridge battle

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Written by on May 24, 2016

Sen. Bill Nelson in Brickell Avenue Bridge battle

To help resolve a long-brewing Brickell Avenue Bridge battle over traffic snarls, Miami’s Downtown Development Authority has recruited US Sen. Bill Nelson to insist that bridge lockdown rules be followed and times expanded.

Oversight of the Coast Guard is part of Mr. Nelson’s committee responsibility.

On May 20, he wrote to Admiral Paul F. Zukunft, Coast Guard commandant, and Jim Boxold, new Florida Department of Transportation secretary for District 6, “I believe the Coast Guard and the Florida Department of Transportation need to revisit the 12-year-old regulations for the bridge and review how the existing operations can be more stringently enforced.”

For years, the development authority has battled the Florida Department of Transportation and the Coast Guard over what it says are improper bridge openings that jam traffic.

Attorneys at Lydecker-Diaz law firm law firm, at which authority board member Richard Lydecker is senior partner, analyzed bridgekeepers’ logs pro bono and saw rules weren’t being followed. They found most openings during restricted times are for pleasure craft.

“Our comprehensive investigation has revealed more than 100 clear-cut violations of [the lock-down rule] and at least 375 instances where the raising of the Brickell Avenue Bridge has caused a chilling effect on the surrounding area’s already stressed traffic patterns,” Mr. Lydecker wrote in an April 18 letter to Mr. Nelson. “While we have addressed our findings with appropriate local and national agencies, such as the Florida Department of Transportation and the United States Coast Guard, we believe your attention… is required in order to prevent the ongoing catastrophic effect bridge operators are causing the downtown sector…”

3 Responses to Sen. Bill Nelson in Brickell Avenue Bridge battle

  1. Willie Benbrook

    May 25, 2016 at 11:19 am

    As long as the City of Miami allows continued construction of monstrous hi-occupancy buildings in the Brickell area, even locking the bridges in the down position permanently (fatal to the Miami River maritime industry), the traffic nightmare will continue. Like the Principality of Monaco, you eventually reach a point where density overwhelms the area. You can only get so many cars into such a limited area. Bridge openings have very little to do with the traffic nightmare. Also, what about all these sponsored “runs” in the area? Why do people have to run across a bridge, snarling traffic yet even more? Have these runs out in the suburbs of Kendall, not across a busy bridge in downtown Miami. As Ann Landers once said, “Wake up and smell the coffee”.

  2. DC Copeland

    May 25, 2016 at 12:45 pm

    Hey, it’s cheaper than a tunnel. Hopefully the CG will heed the Senator’s wishes.

  3. Richard Lydecker

    May 28, 2016 at 2:03 pm

    That so-called “development” problem is simple misdirection, those skyscrapers, Art Muesuems, Brickell village, City Center, Parks, Railway Centers and sporting events are what is making the City of Miami one of the greatest cities in the world. It is the economic engine. For some to say that it is the “development” of Miami that is the problem, and not that opening the bridge during the expanded rush hour times of 6pm to 7 pm times so that the privileged few on a mega yacht can pass at the expense of the hundreds and hundreds of City of Miami workers who who are trying to get home to their families, sometime as long as for 15 minutes of a bridge opening, may be some of the most silliest words ever written in the history of the English language. Simple math illustrates, several hundreds of people who worked all day trying to get home versus the privileged few who did not work that day and simply have to wait till after 7pm (instead of 6pm) to dock their luxurious mega yacht.

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