Friday, April 8, 2016

Miami-Dade Transit

***Revised and Expanded April 9, 2016****

This is quite a detour from the International Highway Makeover but there is more than one way of making over highways. For instance, you can alleviate the choked traffic on them by building... SUBWAYS! That's right, subways. Heavy rail rapid transit, whether underground in tunnels, depressed tracks in trenches, right on the ground surface, elevated on levees, or overhead on skyways, will alleviate traffic on surface highways once they are attractive enough and there are enough of them.

Originally the system was envisioned as two branches to the northwest, one branch to the west and one line to the south. Other extensions were also put on the table and thought about. Here's what Wikipedia has to say about all this:

One variation of the Orange Line extensions was for a continuation passed the current airport station instead of the 1984 ghost platform at Government Center.

From the beginning, the Metrorail was designed and envisioned to have more lines than the current two line system; however, the federally subsidized cost of the original line ended up over budget at $1.02 billion,[9] after which ridership was much lower than expected. The proposed lines included:[18]

You can obtain a more in-depth discussion of the above and other extensions at this link here (30 Mb PDF).

One variation of the Orange Line extensions was for a continuation
past the current airport station instead of the 1984 ghost platform at Government Center.
Source Credit: FrickFrack at English Wikipedia

Back in 2010 I found a map drawn up by someone from Miami and they had an idea for many extensions:

Whoever came up with this give me a call-out!

I do not know what has happened to this jpeg image since Miami-Dade Transit officials pulled the east-west Orange Line extension past the Airport and the other Orange Line extension north past NW 79th Street off the table and opted only for the Earlington Heights-Miami Central Station Connector.

And here is my take on the extensions above map. Watch out - it's huge (10.2 Mb)!

My Modest Proposal.
I think the first priority should be to build the Royal Palm Line, or Green Line, down to Cutler Ridge, extend the King Orange Line from Earlington Heights out to the west end of Arthur Godfrey Road in Miami Beach, and begin the Gold Coast Line from Downtown Miami north to at least the Design District, or better yet, Biscayne Plaza. Second on the agenda should be the construction of the Port Deco (Blue) and Central (Red) Lines from the Airport via the Orange Bowl and NW 7th St to Government Center and at least Port of Miami East, the extension of the Gold Coast Line further north, and the extension of the Tri-Rail down to Tamiami Airport. Third would be the completion of the Port Deco Line to Beach 5th St, the start of construction on the King Orange / Central Lines to FIU Tamiami and the completion of the northern Gold Coast Line to and perhaps into Broward County. Fourth would be the extension of the Gold Coast Line down to Florida City (of course this could be done earlier since Miami-Dade County owns the right-of-way so construction will be cheap) and the construction of the Citrus Line from the Airport to Douglas Road. Last would be the extension of the Citrus Line north to Calder, because, well, look where it's going!

The best way to do this I think is to extend Miami-Dade's half-penny tax for rapid transit over Broward and Palm Beach Counties and give the money AND the Metrorail / Metromover system over to Tri-Rail since at least they haven't been notoriously conspicuous in political corruption AND they can build Metrorails in those two counties, too, with the money. Which they should.

So what do you think of it?  All other things being equal, do you Miami-Dade Countians think it's a good rail rapid transit plan?

Yes, I know Miami is doomed because of AGW. In fact, it's supposed to become uninhabitable long before the seawaters flood the county's interior and coastal zones due to their infiltration of the groundwater in the Biscayne Aquifer, which South Floridians use for their drinking water. One or two drinking water wells have already been put out of commission due to this.

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