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Years After Station Built, Amtrak Still Negotiating With FDOT To Serve Miami Intermodal Center

Years After Station Built, Amtrak Still Negotiating With FDOT To Serve Miami Intermodal Center

It is almost five years after Amtrak was supposed to begin service to the Miami Intermodal Center.

Construction on the rail hub began in 2011, with a forecast completion of September 2013.

The Amtrak station was built, but never opened. The problem – the platform length is 200 feet short, thanks to a miscommunication between Amtrak and FDOT.

Amtrak spokesperson Kimberly Woods provided the following statement on April 19:

Florida is an important market for Amtrak. The Silver Star and Silver Meteor trains connects New York and Miami four times a day. We are excited about the prospects of serving the Miami Intermodal Center (MIC) and discussions continue with the Florida Department of Transportation. We have no immediate plans to serve the MIC. Amtrak continues to provide service at the Miami station in the Hialeah area.

One solution that had been discussed was closing off an adjacent street to car traffic every time a train pulled into a station. That “fix” still hasn’t been implemented yet.

All other planned components of the Miami Intermodal Center are operational, including Metrobus and Greyhound stations, Tri-Rail, and a car rental center. There’s also land available for expansion.

The MIC is linked to Miami International Airport by the MIA Mover, a people mover system. A train departs approximately every 90 seconds, and takes about 3 minutes.

 

almost seven years later, the amtrak platform and lobby remain unused:

 

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Anonymous
Anonymous

How embarrassing…just totally unacceptable! Find a solution and get it done for f@$!/ sake!!

BDub
BDub

We’re an important market to Amtrak, but not important enough to fix this.
Here’s a plan:
1) Add crossing gates at 25th Street (which will be blocked when a train is in the station.)
2) Add automated detour signs that route traffic to 28th when the gates are down.
Not so hard.

Oronzous
Oronzous

that solution has been implemented. Barriers, detour signs to the next street are there. But they don’t use it anyway

Anonymous
Anonymous

What a disaster. A great example for involving private entities in mass transit. Brightline is a perfect successful example although taking away power from the politicians is never an easy task.

William
William

Great example of government leadership!!! Or.. the lack there of.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Government at its finest. When this has been settled, Brightline will be open to Orlando.

Anonymous
Anonymous

no words needed…this just screams incompetent and those in office in miami should be voted out next cycle

Anonymous
Anonymous

Not sure I understand how Miami is responsible, since according to this article the measurements of the train was provided by Amtrak. Additionally, I believe the MIC is a State of Florida project built by the State.

Anonymous
Anonymous

It’s possible that the mistake was am tracks but once it was evident Miami leaders should have concentrated on fixing it immediately and providing transit solutions to the people who elected them but here we are years later stagnant with no movement forward…. There is no leadership here … None…

aka_sfb
aka_sfb

“The problem – the platform length is 200 feet short, thanks to a miscommunication between Amtrak and FDOT.”

Don’t see where it says “[an incorrect] measurements of the train was provided by Amtrak.”

Moreover, as anyone in the industry can attest, its pretty darn hard to confuse the consists measurement, e.g roughly 85± feet per car, thus 200-ft shortage is roughly two – or perhaps even three cars. Conversely commuter rail cars are typically on the order of 60± feet per car, suggesting that perhaps someone at FDOT or perhaps MIC “new better” and took the number of cars in the Amtrak trainset and came up with their own platform length determination? [been there, done that]

Anonymous
Anonymous

The Amtrak tracks were supposed to extend closer to 21 St. FDOT screwed up and built a completely unnecessary bus stop and loop south of the station even though the County already put one at 25 St, and then FDOT tried to hide their mistake by labeling their loop a taxi stop.

Anonymous
Anonymous

It’s FDOT’s screwup.

Anonymous
Anonymous

F*****n Idiots.

marc
marc

“One solution that had been discussed was closing off an adjacent street to car traffic every time a train pulled into a station.” So you’re saying that this location was never big enough for an Amtrak train.

Anonymous
Anonymous

The ground rail station was completed and opened in April 2015, so it’s been 3 years, not 7…

Anonymous
Anonymous

Kids born in 2015 are 20 now.

Anonymous
Anonymous

No wonder they can’t get mass transit running from Miami to Miami Beach.

We’re looking at our tax dollars being wasted by nincompoops!

Anonymous
Anonymous

Miami to Miami Beach delay is on residents on Miami Beach fighting a NIMBY war with it.

Anonymous
Anonymous

This is old news. Amtrak didn’t provide erroneous data, they provided FDOT no data. FDOT went off data they had without consulting Amtrak. The street bypass has already been constructed. But I doubt Amtrak will ever serve the MIC, because it will involve a deadhead move from Hialeah adding operating costs with very little extra revenue.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Like how they pull into Tampa, they’ll have to use the turnaround loop that wraps around their Hialeah station and then back the train into the MIC. They still have to turn the train around in Hialeah between when it arrives and when it leaves.

Anonymous
Anonymous

why does everyone here act like all private enterprises and their ventures are fabulous successes? Corporations and private enterprises F-up on a daily bases all across the country, continent and the world. So do governments. Bad corporations, good corporations. Bad governments, good governments. Get a life people and get off your knees every time a ‘corporation’ stands in front of you.

Anonymous
Anonymous

You’re right. When these corporations and banks get themselves into financial trouble, they have no qualms about running to the government with their hands out for a bailout.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Easy. Just eliminate one car from the train that will not exceed the platform. There problem solved! Your welcome Amtrak.

Anonymous
Anonymous

That would’ve worked when the sleepers were at the front of the train. Amtrak could’ve assigned coach passengers their seats off the last car if they were headed to Miami, then uncoupled it on the north side of 25 St before pulling the rest of the train into the station. Then reconnect when the train backs out. They can’t do that with the sleepers at the end, though they could go back to putting them in the front of the train.

Roy Jr.
Roy Jr.

Fire Rebeca Sosa, Pepe Diaz and the rest of the lifer commissioners and all these bad do nothing for mass transit issues will go away.

RCS
RCS

No one will want to go to Amtrak in Hialeah once Brightline service starts. I just saw a Brightline train at the Miami Station going home from work yesterday via Metrorail. Beautiful and efficient. Go Brightline!
Wake up Amtrak its called competition. Get your act together!

Anonymous
Anonymous

You can drive easi;y to the Amtrack station. Brightline station in downtown is inaccessible to most Miami-Dade coomuters or arrivals on A,track.

Anonymous
Anonymous

What you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this comments section is now dumber for having read it. I award you no thumbs up, and may God have mercy on your soul.

Martim MSK
Martim MSK

Well played, Sir – everyone loves a good Billy Madison line…

Anonymous
Anonymous

So
We’re stuck with Miami having a glorious train station in Hialeah…
How beautiful
The area is so appealing…
Maybe we should also extend Metromover there.

Anonymous
Anonymous

What’s with all the juvenile comments from most everyone on this site all the time. There are corporations and private enterprises F-ing up projects daily across this country, continent and world. You all work for some. Let’s stop the nonsense and stop seemingly kneeling down every time a ‘corporation’ comes in front of you. There are good corporations and bad corporations. Good governments and bad ones. Stop all the fake outrage and generalizations comparing the success of corporate or private led efforts.

ROBERT
ROBERT

FDOT doesn’t seem to get the Intermodal station concept. They designed and built an Intermodal ‘ranch’ and every cowboy has his own station within a ‘station.’ Compare these designs (Miami and Jacksonville) with Milwaukee, one waiting room, ticket windows for each mode, no need to hike upstairs, downstairs, up the block etc… Amtrak talked about the JAX station too, then completely backed away with zero commitment. Perhaps Brightline will develop the rail side, because if JTA (also a State agency) or FDOT does it, you’ll hike a mile ‘within the station.’ Want a hot dog? Greyhound will have a snack bar two blocks north, one floor up, one floor down and one more block west! At least the rail side won’t be blocking a street but it WILL be in a flood zone thanks to JTA/FDOT lowering and rebuilding the Lee Street viaduct.

Anonymous
Anonymous

I read somewhere a piece written by a rail enthusiast who claimed, an I believe it, that Amtrak never had any intention of moving from ‘their’ terminal to MIC.
‘The platform is to short’ is just a convenient excuse. The plan to block NW 25th street has always been ‘the plan’ for this since NW 25th Street has always been there. Amtrak does not even need a full length platform. Many stops, passengers board and alight from/to street level. There was no mis-communication.
It’s all operational laziness by Amtrak since moving to MIC would require more complicated turn-around operation.
The only fault of the State is believing Amtrak would move…because they said they would.
As for Brightline, Amtrak won’t feel anything until the Orlando segment is completed. There is a notable amount of passengers between MIA/FLL/PBI and Kissimmee.

Cully Waggoner
Cully Waggoner

This just shows how bad communication is between all involved and that nobody seems to have asked Amtrak how may cars (about 10 cars with two locomotives on the Meteor, slightly less on the Star) or how long are the Silver Star and Silver Meteor, or even how long the platform is at the current station, which is well over 1,000 feet long.

There are two solutions. Amtrak runs a short shuttle train from MIC to the current Amtrak Station less than 4 miles directly to the north. Or the lengthen the platforms at MIC to accommodate the trains.

This would require permanent closing of NW 25 at the Railroad tracks and creating a permanent detour for NW 25 St traffic that would connect NW 37 Ave to NW 28th Street where it turns south into NW 39th Ave about 800 feet north of NW 25 St. west bound NW 25th Street traffic could either turn south on NW 39th Ave to go back to NW 25th or continue west to NW 42 Ave.

The hard part is who is going to pay for this blunder and how much longer will it take to fix.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Leave 25 St alone. Lengthen the track toward 21 St by tearing out the useless FDOT-built “taxi” stop and relocate the Amtrak kiosk.

Tim
Tim

I always thought the problem was that Amtrak replaced the cars whth newer, longer cars during the design process. And that is where the communication breakdown occurred.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Those cars were always 85 ft, but they use more cars in the peak travel times and that info never got to the planners.

just me
just me

could not agree more, find a solution and get it done!!!

Cully Waggoner
Cully Waggoner

MIC is between NW 21st Street and NW 25 Street and there is over 1,300 feet between those streets. Perhaps if they had a better design they could have used all the space for the platform. The covered part of the platform is about 800 feet long, with about another 200 feet of open platform extending to NW 25th Street. They wasted over 200 feet of open space on the south side of the Station, space that could have been used for a longer platform. Once again proving that the needs of the Station were not clearly defined to those designing it.

Anonymous
Anonymous

Exactly! FDOT stupidly built a bus stop and loop that no bus will ever use in the way of lengthening the track when the County already had one at 25 St.

BobInTheNorth
BobInTheNorth

THE most unhelpful comment listing.
Coming to Miami from the North-Land in Winter and landing in Hialeah is inconvenient if one needs to rent a car. It was easy to switch to TriRail in Hollywood for access to the rental cars at the airport, but no more baggage service in Hollywood.
There’s really no excuse for this.

Anonymous
Anonymous

How many public tax dollars were spent on this?

Anonymous
Anonymous

FDOT screwed up all over the place there. Built low flatforms for both TriTail (correct) and Amtrak (wrong). That can still be fixed. They designed and constructed a MetroBus stop and loop in front of the station even though the County already built their bus depot next to the station at 25th St. This unnecessary FDOT-built bus stop is why the track is too short for Amtrak. They’ve been lying about it forever and made it into a gigantic taxi drop off as a smokescreen for their screwup that could work fine just east of the tracks. Raise the Amtrak platform to meet train floor height like Metrorail platforms, tear out the bus loop in front, rebuild the Amtrak Depot further south and extend one of the Amtrak tracks closer to 21 St. Problem solved. FDOT’s solution? Try to force the County to take back ownership of the property so it’s not their problem. They still haven’t properly connected NW 37 Av to S River Dr or made a simple 50 ft long diagonal southbound roadway ramp from the Rental Car loop road to the service road leading to 21 St. the latter would let motorists get from LeJeune Rd… Read more »

Anonymous
Anonymous

08-11-2018 is there a new update here. I noticed a lot of new construction adjacent to the tracks just north of the station

Anonymous
Anonymous

Did MCM build this?

Anonymous
Anonymous

No they did not. Again, idiots posting inaccurate facts. The MIC is a State project, built by the State of Florida. How is Miami responsible? Since Amtrak provided inaccurate measurements of their trains, then they are responsible, not the State, and certainly not Miami.

Anonymous
Anonymous

That was sarcasm. Also, the government doesn’t build anything. They hire/get bribed by contractors like MCM, idiot.

Anonymous
Anonymous

FDOT is State government, idiot!

Anonymous
Anonymous

Did I mention FDOT?

Anonymous
Anonymous

All FDOT had to do was drive to the Hialeah Station with a tape measure. This screwup is on them.

RCS
RCS

No one will want to go to Amtrak in Hialeah once Brightline service starts. I just saw a Brightline train at the Miami Station going home from work yesterday via Metrorail. Beautiful and efficient. Go Brightline!
Wake up Amtrak its called competition. Get your act together!

Anonymous
Anonymous

Right, because Brightline is running the same route as Amtrak. I can’t tell you how many of those Fort Lauderdale to to West Palm or Downtown Miami Amtrak riders Brightline is about to snatch!

Anonymous
Anonymous

Yeah, you’re right, Brightline even goes all the way up to New York!

Anonymous
Anonymous

It’s not about the platform. The new Amtrak president doesn’t want to go there because they don’t want to pay the rent on the station. This is coming from inside amtrak. It’s all about the rent for the station.