Bus Rapid Transit To South Dade Is Funded & About To Begin, But Now A Commissioner Wants It Cancelled

A newly elected Miami-Dade commissioners is demanding the county to cancel plans to build a Bus Rapid Transit system to South Dade.

Kionne McGhee, who was recently elected commissioner for the South Dade area, is asking Mayor Daniella Levine Cava to cancel the project.

Although the BRT system has been years in planning and is about to begin construction, McGhee wants the county to build rail instead.

A $368 construction contract was awarded to Spanish contractor OHL in October, and the mayor is expected to issue the contractor a Notice to Proceed imminently.

The county, state and federal government have agreed to finance the project after years of planning.

The project is known as the South Corridor, or the South Dade Transitway. It is one of six rapid transit corridors of the Strategic Miami Area Rapid Transit Plan (SMART) and the first to move forward.

The county has said that the bus system will be “cutting edge.”

The South Corridor runs along 20 miles of exclusive transit right-of-way, starting at Dadeland and running to SW 344th Street.

A total of 14 stations are planned, along with a Park and Ride Garage.

Stations are being designed to accommodate rail in the future, and commissioners have promised that the line will be converted to rail once boardings surpass 35,000 per day.

The cost for a rail system on the same route has been estimated at $1 to $1.5 billion.

 

 

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Anonymous
1 month ago

Terrible. Give residents relief! Elected officials will do anything to stop non-car transportation projects.

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

I think they are banking on people being dumb in Miami. Maybe the sun is too hot. Enchanced, premium, first class, innovative BUS!! I said almost 4 years ago. Look at the long term plans for the county. Everyone is going to get the Bus. The political class will pick us all off one by one. District by district. North VS South and East VS West. I hope we don’t fall for it.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Who cares about buses!!! It’s 2021! Extend the metromover, or even build a subway system. Buses are a thing of the past, let’s move Miami to the future!

Anonymous
1 month ago

Well, at least to Wynwood, Edgewater, and the Design District for a start, they need to stop BSing around and extend the MetroMover.

Danny Costa
1 month ago

For real! It’s a no brainer and they are showing they have no brains

Anonymous
1 month ago

lol.. now that sh!t’s funny Danny Costa…

Anonymous
1 month ago

“At least” to places right next to existing railroad. You have no brains at all.

Anonymous
1 month ago

You mean metrorail? Extend south from Dadeland?

Anonymous
1 month ago

No one is talking about going to Dadeland Mall and building a MetroMover line south of it.

Anonymous
1 month ago

The OP is referring to Metro RAIL not Metro MOVER. Two different platforms.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Lmao the metro mover would take literal years to get from homestead to Dadeland

Anonymous
1 month ago

I totally agree. But in order to achieve that, we need visionary politicians. Visionary like Henry Flagler. Not these ass backward stuck in the past politicians

Anonymous
1 month ago

Flagler was a businessman, not a politician. Politicians are either complaining road names like “Dixie Highway” hurt feefees and/or getting rich from the Chinese.

Anonymous
1 month ago

South Dade does not have the density to support rail. Take the bus.

Anonymous
1 month ago

It’s called incremental development, start with BRT, and as the ridership warrants more intense transportation alternative, you transition to rail.

Anonymous
1 month ago

I think this is a bad approach, why not just build a rail line in denser areas and increase the ridership of the overall system that way and then do a BRT to less dense areas.

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

In any other county, I would probably agree but the track record for Miami is questionable. Too many cooks in the kitchen. I don’t think it will be compatible when it needs to be expanded. The stations may need Elevation etc. Just a waste of time. Ultimately I think the goal is the sell bus for everyone with the transit way as the prototype. They already have the diagrams for the East-West corridors and busses.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Atlanta, Denver, Charlotte, Dallas all have rail , they are much less densely populated cities than Miami Dade.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Miami has rail too. But those cities mentioned don’t have rail in less dense areas.

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

What are you talking about. Go look at a Dart Map.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Denver, Charlotte, and Dallas all have at-grade light rail. Very different from Atlanta’s MARTA and our Metrorail which are grade-separated/elevated heavy rail.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Exactly, once the density is there rail could be built.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Build rail once density is achieved? They’ve been saying that since metro rail began decades ago. The density is there, but now the story is it’s too expensive. So you’re suggesting we wait until it’s even more expensive to build? Fabulous logic!

Anonymous
1 month ago

Exactly. It’s ironic that they are clamoring for rail all the way out to Florida City but are the same group that is opposed to zoning changes that increase density and building heights. Whether it’s fears of displacement or environmental issues, they object to dense urban development but demand rail without providing evidence the ridership is there to warrant it. Political posturing at its finest.

Anonymous
1 month ago

☝🏼 This comment is spot on…

Anonymous
1 month ago

It is.. that’s why I gave it a “thumb up vote.”

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

It’s already been done. Drive down US1. Apartment buildings going up daily off the transit way. The landing is being grabbed up immediately. The related group, cfh group, county development etc

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

We already have the bus. Other areas with density won’t use rail. The working class is increasingly pushed south. Go to Dadeland South once in a while.

Anonymous
1 month ago

does it have the ridership to support the bus?

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

Before Covid, Dadeland South and North have the highest passenger boardings outside of Government Center. Those passengers are overwhelmingly suburban riders. Some from the Kendall burbs south of Kendall Dr who park and ride and even more from Palmetto Bay, Cutler Bay, Homestead and many unincorporated areas with large working class populations. They ride a bus for 45 mins. These folks are more likely to use public transit than riders from the Grove, Douglas road, Coral Gables etc. Outside of University Station, empty. Look at the numbers.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Neither does Hialeah bit it runs through…

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

If rail can’t be built here, there will be no metro expansion anywhere. The most important note from the article is that the county already owns the right of way. Arguably the largest barrier for any rail transit. The other corridors need acquisition of land (doubtful) and begging brightline for use. Nothing about this SMART plan is smart. There will be no conversion to rail in the future. Look at the track record for the county. Incompatible modes (platforms built to wrong specs) and questionable maintenance. They will tell us it needs to be torn down and built again so special interest can line their pockets. Miami Dade County is growing too fast to implement solutions that would have been great 20 years ago. This along with the monorail is not SMART. On top of the screw job by brightline where we have to beg for stations and use of tracks. Who is running this show?

Living off A1A
1 month ago

This thread is so correct on so many levels… but to touch on a point by @Bryan_Riley — *”There will be no conversion in the future”.* This is 100% correct. The Miami-Dade Metrorail System is HEAVY RAIL (with the ELECTRIFIED THIRD RAIL!). That means that the system can NOT share with other modes of transportation or human traffic. It will KILL YOU! Must be on a dedicated ROW! Being 1) Elevated –as we currently are. 2) Below Grade –as in “subway”. Or 3) Separated guideway –as in 100% fenced-in. The last time I drove down US1 >>> there are a gazillion cross-streets along the proposed BRT. That’s IMPOSSIBLE to convert to rail! Unless MDT throws in another type of system to attempt to ‘not maintain’. 1) Heavy Rail, 2) APM (MetroMover), 3) Various bus-types & 4) this stupid monorail concept! ((>>>I love the idea of a monorail… it’s efficient and cheaper… but we can’t keep adding different modes and technology and expect the MDT to maintain it… especially anywhere to close to “within budget!”<<<)) How many platforms do we need to train/re-train the technicians who will attempt to keep the systems running… without a proper budget? Besides, we need MDT to stick to the "3-seat" maximum. A neighborhood 'first-mile" bus to the Rail … Rail for the long-haul… and another bus for the 'final-mile' if not near the actual Metrorail station. This hodge-podge approach needs to condense-down!

That's my two-cents for today.

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

My faith is renewed in the knowledge of our residents. Your two-cents are appreciated. Bravo 👏🏾

How many times will we fall for the same script? Hook, Line and Sinker It’s a bad play….let it go please 🙏🏾

The weird thing is the people against this don’t understand they are fighting against their own interests in their corridors. If South Dade gets rail, no way can the county sell the other corridors on a bus. It’s time to stand together

Anonymous
1 month ago

The comments here about waiting for density are incredibly dumb. Build the rail first and let the developers build around the stations. That’s how you build proper density. If you wait for the density the rail becomes that much more expensive when trying to build in a high density/high traffic area.

Anonymous
1 month ago

We need more density?

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

It’s like where do they find these guys. We will build the roads, transit and infrastructure after everyone gets there. This is why we have the problem. Why is everything thing backwards here?

Anonymous
1 month ago

“Why is everything thing backwards here?”

Because they’re too busy trying to figure out which one came first.. “the chicken or the egg.”

Anonymous
1 month ago

I think it was misguided to start this project with the least dense area of the SMART plan. We have corridors (East-West) that are completely devoid of any rapid transit option and these morons think that adding BRT to the Dolphin Express is a good idea. Yes, let me walk 3 miles into a highway intersection to possibly get run over to grab a bus that leaves me miles away from any major population area. Instead of wasting money on two separate BRT lines, just build one Metrorail line East-West, not only would that increase the volume of riders, it would make it easier to justify future development because of the increased ridership across the system.

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

That is a great plan. But we need right of ways. If South Dade gets the bus with the easiest path for building rail, what do you think the East-West corridors will get. Wait they already told us. Bus stop on the highway. These are the same people. We just got to stand together and demand metro rail for every corridor. Until then, let’s save our money.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Seriously, also. Start with the North Corridor and bringing Tri-rail costal link. There is even a freight rail line that already runs south parallel to the Palmetto, why not look at starting with what we already have.

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

The private owners of those right of ways want to make a killing off the access. That’s why it hasn’t been done. Even when we give them money, they create problems like brightline. The north corridor will take alot partnership with the state. I think that avenue is a state road. We would need to aquire a ROW there. But I support it. Let’s connect the premier stadium to metro rail.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Honestly, just start building the rail with the funds that are allocated.

That’ll get us 100 additional feet of rail with how wasteful the County allocates money.

EJS
1 month ago

If Miami keeps it well-maintained, safe, and clean with short wait times between busses, it shld win over converts easily. BUT Miami does not have a good track record in maintaining its public transport infrastructure. This is what scares me everytime these big budget proposals are put forward.

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

Spot on. The rail is even lacking. Bus in other areas of the world is fine. Barcelona, Hong Kong has a good system. Reliable and clean. For those of us that have been here for decades, we know what bus means. Another theft job.

Anonymous
1 month ago

They don’t have a track record of maintaining anything!

Optimist
1 month ago

Maybe more $ should go to maintenance.

CEC
1 month ago

A bus system is a waste of money in the long run. Even in the proposal it is admitted that it is temporary. Spend the available money on a permanent addition to the elevated Metrorail system. As additional money becomes available add to the system, even if it has to be expanded 100 yards at a time; no money is wasted on a permanent addition. People ride the Metrorail now. Trains are cheaper to run than busses; in addition as ridership improves you don’t have to buy and operate another bus. Just add another railcar.

Azarius
1 month ago

I agree stop with the rapid bus and build the necessary infrastructure for our and the next generation… putting it off is only going to push the cost higher. Let’s get this done now and watch how Miami bloom. Why wait till it’s the density gets there when it’s going to happen. Better planning better future

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

Who can be against this? The costs are continuing to rise. Land is going up in value. Right of ways are increasing. It may become unfeasble at this rate. The old cities we admire, made the same investments. It’s giving people reasonable access to the county. It will add jobs, opportunities and connect people. Allow everyone to partake in the growth of the entire county. Why are people so against it. It’s one county. We all will benefit.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Some of the stations should be elevated above major intersections.

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

That would take planning and they need to plan now before more development makes that harder. 136, 152, 184, 200th etc. The arteries for East-west to get to US1 will be a nightmare. Wait until the worst happens and react. That can’t be our cycle.

Annoying
1 month ago

I think someone got a private contract to buy so many buses from a certain company *cough *cough

V. Vega
1 month ago

Does anyone build their new kitchen just half good to then eventually rebuild it to what u originally wanted? No right? Waist of money and much more annoying time spent in construction. You doi it the right way one time and love it afterwards. Thats how its done

Anonymous
1 month ago

honestly, Miami drivers are just going to be driving in this new bus lane. I see it happening already in my eyes. Just put the rail down now and save money.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Then quadruple the fines and use that money toward expanding the metromover.

Anonymous
1 month ago

A Rail System will promote a high-density redevelopment of the area.
They call it Century XXI

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

Yet it needs no promotion. Word got out a long time ago that South Dade has the cheapest land available for both apartment buildings, subsidized housing, indistrial and commercial build outs. It’s happening anyway. The long term planning is what is lacking. They are allowing developers to build to areas with with roads that can only support rural traffic. It’s crazy. How can the same problem contiune to happen for decades?

Anonymous
1 month ago

Cancel it because you idiots gave it to a foreign company again

Anonymous
1 month ago

The residents of South Dade deserve more than a bus service. Build the rail and unite the county. I’ve always wondered if it can built in smaller sections to relieve the money strain. IJS.

Anonymous
1 month ago

BRT if executed correctly (which by the looks of it for South Dade, it will be) can be almost as effective as light rail while being a fraction of the price and taking only 2-3 years to construct rather than 5-8. It would also be possible to upgrade to LRT or even HRT once the density is there since the ROW will be maintained.

It’s never a one size fits all, and this is the right tool kit for South Dade. Now for East-West, thats totally different story and they’re definitely moving in the wrong direction there.

Bryan Riley
1 month ago

Miami Dade has a problem with execution. Can’t you see your own argument will be used against on your preferred corridor. Everybody is getting bus except where the county sees it can give sweetheart deals to well connected private companies. Mono Rail and brightline

We the people.
1 month ago

South dade farmers have left Miami Selling thier lands to a new booming companies who are growing residential apt buildings all over the busway. We have failed these community members for years. This rail system needed to be implemented a mile each year since 2010. We need ,deserve and DEMAND RAIL. YES for God’s sake please restore route 35 back to its original route and route 70 as well. With all this new development’s new members to our society need these routes that cut inside the back streets to funnel them onto the busway/ NEW RAILWAY. THESE ROUTE NEED TO BE OPERATED BY MIAMI DADE PROFESSIONAL TRANSIT SYSTEM BUSES. “” NOT THIS HACK JOB UNSAFE DRUG INFESTATION VAN PRIVATE COMPANY. LSF/ AMERICAN TRANSPORTATION. “”” I strongly encourage to list to the voice of the people. For we are the ones who voted you in to represent us. God bless.

Anonymous
1 month ago

“We have failed these community members for years”

“We?”

Son, we’re all in the same boat.

Shawn Kouri
1 month ago

Hold on now. You are not canceling no rapid bus transit system buddy. Tell that to Commissioner McGee

Shawn Kouri
1 month ago

In fact, Miami Dade County needs not just the bus system, it needs both the bus system itself and a rail system expansion to South Dade and at least a west Corredor. So you are not going to stop this from being built. No way Jose.

Anonymous
1 month ago

will they convert to elevated rail or will it be at ground level?

Living off A1A
1 month ago

It can’t be at ground level. Metrorail is “heavy rail” that utilizes the “electrified third rail”. You touch that >>> you’re DEAD! The guideway must be separated from human and vehicular traffic.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Look, the article said this is “starting at Dadeland and running to SW 344th Street.”

I’m not against how this is planned to serve the county pass Dadeland Mall at this moment in time. Now as for the rest, they really have to work on getting this “Strategic Miami Area Rapid Transit Plan (SMART) straight from the get-go and not screw it up.

Anonymous
1 month ago

South Dade has been the County Transportation Cinderella for quite a while. The current system, a sort of BANANA REPUBLIC service, is an insult to South Dade residents.
By all means bring RAILS and… REAL BUSES for inner Soith Dade traveling!

SoMiami
1 month ago

Politics, politics it won’t work because it was based on a political decision and not a logical decision. And everyone that’s a property owner will pay for this BRT.

Flymia
1 month ago

I will say that if any line a bus make sense it is this one.

What I don’t agree with is the idea that they should spend $350 million on a bus line, to then say, oh if the bus line does great, we will spend another 1-1.5 billion on rail. In that case just build the rail.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Build the rail. Isnt anyone sick of constant construction? Building, rebuilding and so on just because they’re too cheap and shortsighted to do it right the first time
“Build it and they will come” but honestly who need more population down here anyway. People move to south dade to get away from big apartments and buildings and so many people down south commute to work up north. Do it proper the first time so there wont be another build up of would be user and yet another construction sight in the same place (which is going to be annoying)

Anonymous
1 month ago

Ok. I’m pretty dumb. So what’s the big difference of this new bus system and what’s already there now. Please someone tell my dumb butt. and why would it costs hundreds of millions of dollars.

Anonymous
1 month ago

They’re making the stations nice with platform level boarding and pre-ticket purchase while also adding transit signal priority and crossing gates at intersections. So theoretically, the bus should never stop at any intersections, only at the stations making it very similar to light rail.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Tons of money for his pockets… that’s it.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Since we start the new era of prosperity and give away everything for free !!!!! Let’s get the Metro, after all what different does it make a 1,5 billions $

Anonymous
1 month ago

Long time ago. Metro raíl was designed for all Miami Dade. Not only to the south Dade but west to the turnpike along NW 12th street with stop at airport, to FIU SW 8th street and along south next to the turnpike till Kendal.
What happing or they though of making more money with Express lane.