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Front Page » Top Stories » South Dade tapped for first of rapid transit routes

South Dade tapped for first of rapid transit routes

Written by on June 21, 2016
South Dade tapped for first of rapid transit routes

County commissioners are preparing to advance one of six targeted rapid transit routes, Commissioner Esteban Bovo Jr., who chairs the Transit and Mobility Services Committee, told the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce Goals Conference on Friday.

The search for gridlock solutions dominated the conference, with plenty of talk about the Strategic Miami Area Rapid Transit, or SMART, plan: six corridors “that directly support the mobility of our future population and employment growth.” The county Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) endorsed the plan in April.

Challenged by Chairman Mark Rosenberg to pick one project for the chamber to get behind, Mr. Bovo cited the South Dade TransitWay along US 1 from Kendall Drive to Southwest 344th Street in Florida City. The SMART plan calls for converting the US 1 Busway from “Enhanced Bus Service to Light Rail Transit (LRT) and/or appropriate premium transit technology.”

Mr. Bovo said within a few months commissioners will ask the MPO board to advance the South Dade TransitWay. He suggested that the MPO vote to request proposals for a public-private partnership on rapid transit there.

“Let’s just move,” he said.

Earlier, Mr. Bovo had mentioned private interest in the south route.

A traffic jam is “an equal opportunity stagnator” when it comes to an area’s economic strength, he said, and being stuck in traffic is not a lifestyle anyone would desire.

“One corridor will have to go first. We’ll have to choose,” he said.

The one route of the six in the SMART plan that “can be done quickly” is the South Dade TransitWay into Florida City, Mr. Bovo said. “We own the right of way,” a major advantage. Rapid transit on that route, he said, “unlocks the southern end of the county.”

10 Responses to South Dade tapped for first of rapid transit routes

  1. Fernando

    June 22, 2016 at 9:51 am

    Please please please get this done. There’s an urgent need to improve the access o those of us in the west and south of the county to the business centers in Brickell and Downtown

  2. DC Copeland

    June 22, 2016 at 12:58 pm

    What a mistake. Anyone who makes a choice to live in the nether regions of the county ought not to expect anything re mass transit solutions. Those solutions should emanate from the central core outward. Let neglect of the outer regions encourage those living there or thinking about moving there to move closer to the “central zone.” Limited transportation dollars that would go to them should instead go to where it is most needed. Don’t enable those who think living in the boonies is possible while still enjoying a semblance of the “good life.”

  3. William

    June 22, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    Fernando is right. Please proceed ASAP. Thank you

  4. FHDunbar

    June 22, 2016 at 3:23 pm

    This is great news; many of those that have moved to the “nether” regions of our county were simply priced out of core areas with the ongoing construction of luxury homes and condos that only a few privileged can afford. The population of South Dade is growing at a rapid pace, because it offers nice affordable housing, public schools that are ranked “A” and relative proximity to the airport, Downtown Miami, Coral Gables, and the Florida Keys. Traffic into these areas is only going to increase, and I am sure a large population of the downtown workforce lives outside of the core. Incorporating the underused and already county owned busway is an easy way to get Miami moving towards a better transportation system.

    Other major metropolises have major transportation that extends into suburbia

  5. Lee

    June 23, 2016 at 1:47 am

    Imagine TWO Projects Simultaneously… We can do it, Just Move.

  6. victor

    June 23, 2016 at 7:52 am

    I agree with Copeland but not with his reasoning. Dade County has already allowed the growth to the outer regions without check for decades. There won’t be a mass migration back to the core. However, as pointed out in the article, the Busway already exists. Converting this into a light rail line would only nominally increase use of transit. Instead focus should be on major arteries that would alleviate commuter congestion thus creating a better result of transit use. A light rail line from 157 Ave to Dadeland, a raised corridor along 1-95 from Miami gardens to Downtown, Lightrail along Biscayne Boulevard, expansion of Metrorail line from Airport west to 826 then south to 8th street. And if we are going to convert US1 busway to lightrail, why don’t we coordinate with FPL who is in love with the idea of placing their powerlines on the busway, and use this opportunity to create a government/ private partnership to alleviate the costs.

  7. Elliot

    June 24, 2016 at 11:46 am

    I’m amazed. FINALLY, the political leaders in this county are getting with the program of advancing rapid transit in Miami. Our region is approaching gridlock each year that passes. It’s most notable every time school starts back in session and then the winter tourist season compounds the traffic problem. I’m glad that our county’s political leaders are finally getting off the fence and doing something about this situation. Mobility builds a great community and improves quality of life. Let’s move on this.

  8. Eric

    June 26, 2016 at 6:03 am

    I was born and raised in miami dade but i moved to Washington DC 15 years ago. We have 6 metro lines here and they go where people want to go. And even if i have car problems i can easily get to where i wanna go. i think miami should build light rail lines which are cheaper to build. Along the busway is a good idea. And miami needs rail from kendall to the dolphin then to downtown. And along the palmetto from the broward line to the dolphin. They also should build light rail from dolphin stadium to metro rail.

  9. Steven

    July 12, 2016 at 2:22 pm

    You guys should look at the Brisbane Qld_au City Council Busway it works well. 2 lanes special purpose built with own signaling 1 cbd to Southern Suburbs (edge of brisbane city county) and later they built another to the inner northern suburbs not as long but still works well.

  10. Ricardo

    August 9, 2016 at 2:15 pm

    It’s a great idea! I live in Cutler Bay, traffic in South Miami Dade is horrible, we need that Light Rail so bad, I’m sick of being driving through the gridlock everyday twice a day