Miami-Dade commissioner hopes to kill possible contract with Greyhound
By Susan Stabley
Miami-Dade County Commissioner Jimmy Morales said Tuesday that he will ask the county's new manager to kill a possible contract that would allow a Greyhound bus station off Brickell Avenue.
Commissioner Morales said former county manager Steve Shiver may have signed off on a lease with Greyhound, which plans to build a 2,500-square-foot, single-story structure at Brickell Station, a hub that connects Metrorail, Metromover and Metrobus services at 1001 SW First Ave.
"I don't know if it's true or not, but I've asked (county manager George Burgess) to kill it if he can," said Commissioner Morales. Mr. Shiver resigned June 6 and was replaced by Mr. Burgess, former chief financial officer for Miami-Dade County schools.
Mr. Shiver is out of town and cannot be reached.
The Brickell Area Association has begun an e-mail campaign encouraging its members to petition the County Commission and City of Miami Mayor Manny Diaz prevent a terminal from being built.
Rick Gonsalves, president of the Brickell Area Association, said his group is under the impression that the county would not agree to a lease.
"We're extremely surprised this happened without the public being aware of it," Mr. Gonsalves said Monday.
Mr. Gonsalves said there have been efforts to revitalize the area around the station - including the planned Mary Brickell Village project, which mixes residential units and commercial space on 5.2 acres between Southwest Ninth and 10th streets.
"The neighborhood is very up in arms," said Commissioner Morales. "At least, let's stop it for now and see what happens."
Commissioner Morales said the county would not get much revenue from the lease with Greyhound - not enough to justify the impact that more than 20 buses per day could have on traffic in the area.
According to Miami-Dade County's Office of Public Transportation Management, Brickell is the sixth-most-heavily boarded Metrorail station and the fourth-most-heavily boarded Metromover station. About 2,280 buses run in and out of Brickell Station in a week.
A bus station would not have a 24-hour schedule and would probably run 175 buses a week through the stop. An official with the county's Office of Public Transportation Management estimated that Greyhound would account for a 7% increase in bus traffic at Brickell Station.
Greyhound spokeswoman Kim Plaskett said the Brickell area was selected because of connection potential to other modes of transportation, part of an effort to tie the interstate bus company's stops with intermodal hubs.
"If it's an opportunity to connect, then it is a very attractive deal for us," Ms. Plaskett said.
Greyhound has four stations in Miami. Creation of a stop at Brickell would replace a temporary station near Metromover's Overtown/Arena Station at 100 NW Sixth St.
The Dallas-based bus line uses about 112 company-operated bus terminals and another 1,700 agency-operated terminals. Greyhound serves 2,600 US destinations.