FYI Miami: May 2, 2019
Below are some of the FYIs in this week’s edition. The entire content of this week’s FYIs and Insider sections is available by subscription only. To subscribe click here.
UNEMPLOYMENT CREEPS UP: Despite solid annual jobs gains in fields like construction and professional and business services, unemployment in Miami-Dade crept up from 3.2% in February to 3.4% in March, according to the latest US Bureau of Labor Statistics report. That left 47,900 persons in Miami-Dade unemployed, up from 46,100 in February. Construction showed the highest gain among job categories, up 7.35 for the year, followed by professional and business services, up 4.9%.
AIRPORT TRAFFIC SOARS: Passenger traffic at Miami International Airport rose 5% in the first quarter of the year, the airport announced Tuesday, adding 583,073 passengers over the same period last year. International passengers increased 5.5% and domestic passengers increased 4.6%.
METROBUS REDESIGN: Transit Alliance Miami’s pending Miami-Dade Metrobus route network redesign is one vote from approval, as county lawmakers in the Transportation and Finance Committee last month voted 4-0 to forward to a May 7 full commission vote a resolution sponsored by Esteban Bovo Jr. and Daniella Levine Cava supporting the group’s “Better Bus Project.” Mayor Carlos Giménez last year reserved $250,000 in “seed money” in the county’s 2019-20 budget for the group to use to attract matching funds, which it did. Transportation Director Alice Bravo said the redesign will create “hub and spoke system” where mostly straight, high-frequency routes are fed by smaller, less-frequent routes. The roughly nine-month system study will also include analyses of on-demand and ride-hailing services within the county – studies Transit Alliance Miami founder and Chairwoman Marta Viciedo said exceed the project’s scope and budget. To compensate, Ms. Bravo said her department would study those aspects “in-house,” adding, “Obviously, we want to look at the system in its entirety.”
MORE ART IN THE BEACH: Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber has asked the Finance and Citywide Projects Committee to alter an ordinance on Art in Public Places program. He wants to see more public art in the city and wants to expand the projects covered under the ordinance to be able to fund and support other artistic endeavors. Miami Beach has continued to support its Art in Public Places program after its establishment in 1984. Recent additions to the collection include six new works, selected from 524 entries, for the Miami Beach Convention Center with a total price tag of $7 million. Funding for these recent additions and future collections comes from 1.5% of costs saved from city-initiated endeavors as well as private and public partnerships.