Miami Beach Mayoral Candidate Steve Berke (who is also, by the way, a comedian, marijuana activist, and documentarian of said Mayoral run) has some grand ideas for solving Miami Beach's transit woes. The first idea, a light rail system circling South Beach is very good but not new and already an aspect of the recently revived Baylink idea. The second idea is the real headline grabber: an epic aerial tramway zooming over Biscayne Bay to Miami, ski-slope gondola style, that at the least would be an absolutely wild ride.
As for the routes each system would take, well, Berke's light rail zigzags all over the beach like a cat on crack. A whole loop goes to Belle Isle, because apparently walking from there to Sunset Harbor is just too far. Halfway up Alton, the train doglegs over to West Avenue and then, wouldn't ya know it, doglegs back a few blocks later. It basically makes curlicues around the Bass Museum. Meanwhile, gondolas full of tourists will depart South Point Park and immediately have to ascend hundreds of feet vertically above the tallest cruise ships before zooming over PortMiami's working post-panamax container port. Oh, and on the other side of the port, the gondolas will pass directly through PortMiami's turning basin, getting in the way of the ships. Apparently, those cruise ships just gonna have to flip it in reverse and back their asses out. Beep, beep.
Curbed Miami does not endorse any candidate in the Miami Beach mayoral race, but to give credit where credit is due, it is extremely refreshing that the island city's hellish transportation situation is being addressed as a serious issue in this election instead of being swept under the rug. On the other hand, we're not transportation engineers, but neither Steve Berke, and boy is it obvious.
UPDATE: A previous version of this story claimed that Berke brought a mariachi band to the last Miami Beach Mayoral debate. There was a mariachi band present, but according to Berke it was not he who brought it.