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Miami Beach pauses light rail project to wait for Miami-Dade’s commitment

Mayor Levine wants the people to decide on pursuing a connection between Miami Beach and downtown Miami

Not long after Miami Beach residents showed displeasure over moving forward with a $244 million light rail on its island, the City Commission has unanimously decided to press pause on fast-tracking the project while they wait for a commitment from the City of Miami to ensure full connectivity over the MacArthur Causeway.

The Beach’s “resolution” will “require the Miami-Dade County Board of Commissioners to formally commit to and guarantee a connection across the MacArthur Causeway as part of the transportation SMART Plan,” per the release, with the “final contract for a light rail system will require voter approval in a Citywide referendum.”

Miami Beach Mayor Phillip Levine wants the people to ultimately decide on a connection between the island and downtown if/when Miami-Dade progresses with Baylink.

There was a survey conducted with polling firm McLaughlin & Associates of “likely general election voters” in Miami Beach with the results showing 71 percent were in favor of a light rail between the city and the beach.

That study can be viewed here.

It’s a wise move because I don’t think many beach residents care for adding more connectivity on the island. The long overdue issue is creating an efficient public transportation system between Miami Beach and downtown Miami.

With all the development going on in the Brickell/Downtown area it’s an absolute no-brainer and something that would surely help alleviate traffic. It has to be the priority. I know I’d use the heck out of it, though Uber/Lyft and their drivers probably wouldn’t be too pleased.