Multimodal Transit Improvements
Specific Aspects of the Program
The FY 2017 Transportation Improvement Program includes funding over the next five years for the following projects:
Urban Corridor Development
State Transit Corridor Program funds will be used for the continuation of several successful South Miami-Dade Busway routes as well as the Flagler MAX route, the Kendall Cruiser, the Busway MAX, and various 95 Express routes.
Routine Replacement and Enhancement
The Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners (BCC) and the Citizens’ Independent Transportation Trust (CITT) in March 2008 approved the $401 million procurement of 136 new rail vehicles for replacing the existing fleet.
The new vehicles will feature the latest technological advances which will significantly improve passenger comfort, efficient maintenance and operations. Delivery of the new vehicles is currently projected to commence in late 2016.
Bus New Vehicle Replacement
The Department of Transportation and Public Works (DTPW) continues to implement its bus replacement program. Funding for this program is provided through various sources including the PTP, FDOT and Federal funding sources. DTPW’s bus fleet is continuously aging; therefore an aggressive bus replacement plan is in place to ensure compliance with FTA’s bus retirement criteria.
The procurement of alternative fuel buses for replacements and enhancements would not only be an improvement to transit but also promote the county’s long-term initiative towards a state of good repair, economic competitiveness, livability, sustainability, safety, job creation, and economic stimulus.
After examining various alternative fuels, DTPW decided to migrate its bus fleet to clean-burning, compressed natural gas (CNG). In addition to CNG, DTPW will also acquire zero emissions electric buses.
Safety and Security
DTPW has programmed funding to purchase security equipment to upgrade and install closed circuit camera television (CCTV) systems and its respective software components, and to continue the replacement of fire detection and reporting systems. DTPW’s commitment to the safety and security of the DTPW system, patrons, and employees is of the highest of priorities. In an effort to further complement its existing security infrastructure, DTPW continues to aggressively add state-of-the art technology to both reduce crime and to aid law enforcement in proactively securing and safeguarding the transit system. FDOT Rule 14-15.017(2.2.1), however, prevents DTPW from disclosing these improvements/installations in greater detail.
MDT Additional Elevators at Dadeland North Metrorail Station
Since its completion in 1984, the Dadeland North Metrorail Station’s use has increased dramatically through the years. Because of increasing ridership at the Dadeland North Metrorail Station, the existing bank of elevators (four elevators) does not provide an acceptable level of service during peak hours. Peak passenger flows create congestion and long waiting periods for Metrorail passengers waiting for the elevators, generating complaints from existing customers. DTPW is adding two (2) elevators to the existing parking facility, one elevator at each end of the structure. DTPW is currently in the consultant selection process for design services. The estimated project completion date is December 2019.
Transit Centers with Park & Ride Facilities
Kendall Park-and-Ride Facility at SW 127th Avenue
DTPW is constructing a 183-space park-and-ride facility on approximately 2.8 acres located at the southeast corner of SW 88th Street (Kendall Drive) and SW 127th Avenue. This facility will serve the Kendall Cruiser (Route 288) which began service in June 2010. This site is owned by Florida Power and Light (FPL). On December 2, 2015 the construction contract was advertised. The project is scheduled for completion in April 2017.
NW 27th Avenue and NW 215th Street (Unity Station)
A 14-acre vacant parcel adjacent to the intersection of the Turnpike and NW 27th Avenue has been identified as a strategic park-and-ride location for the North Corridor (NW 27th Avenue) Premium Transit project which is being studied by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). Up to 350 parking spaces are proposed for this facility which would serve the northern most station for new premium transit service in the corridor. This park-and-ride lot also provides strategic transit oriented development (TOD) opportunities. This facility is anticipated to open in 2019.
SW 8th Street and SW 147th Avenue (Tamiami Station)
An 8-acre vacant parcel of land on the SW corner of the intersection at SW 8th Street and SW 147th Avenue has been identified as a strategic park-and-ride location for the SR 836 Express Bus Service project. The proposed park-and-ride facility will accommodate approximately 500 parking spaces, which would serve as the western most station for the new premium bus service in the corridor. The estimated completion date is 2019.
HEFT and NW 12th Street (Dolphin Station)
Property owned by FDOT located adjacent to the intersection of the Homestead Extension of the Florida Turnpike (HEFT), SR 836 and NW 12th Street has been identified as a strategic location for a transit center with a park-and-ride facility. This transit center would support the SR 836 Express Bus Service project and provide a potential terminus or stop for several local bus routes serving the Dolphin Mall and nearby cities of Sweetwater and Doral. The scheduled completion date is late 2017.
Palmetto Expressway at NW 74th Street (Palmetto Intermodal Terminal)
DTPW recommends that the FDOT SR 826/Palmetto Expressway Express Lanes PD&E Study address the feasibility of acquiring an 11.88-acre semi-vacant parcel of land located immediately south of the Palmetto Metrorail Station for the purpose of constructing the Palmetto Station Intermodal Terminal that will include but not be limited to: long-term parking, short-term parking, kiss-and-ride, pool-and-ride and a minimum of 6 bus bays and 2 layover bays.
Park-and-Ride Lot at South Miami-Dade Busway and SW 112th Avenue
DTPW is currently leasing approximately 454 parking spaces on an existing surface lot located at approximately SW 112th Avenue and the South Miami-Dade Busway and is in the process of examining the feasibility of acquiring the site and improving the existing surface parking to better serve transit patrons and improve access to the busway.
Transit Centers without Park-and-Ride
Panther Station at Florida International University
Florida International University (FIU) constructed a parking garage along SW 8th Street with ground floor space reserved for a future transit center. The location of the new parking garage, between SW 112th Avenue and SW 109th Avenue, presents an access challenge that requires roadway widening to construct bus only lanes and traffic signal improvements to provide bus signal priority at the two intersections along this roadway segment. The new transit center would provide 10 bus bays to accommodate the relocation of the existing DTPW routes from the current bus terminal located near SW 107th Avenue/SW 17th Street and provide capacity for future routes such as the SR-836 Express Bus, the Flagler Street Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) and express routes operating on the Homestead Extension of the Florida Turnpike (HEFT). Completion of the transit center should coincide with the beginning of the SR-836 Express Bus in 2019.
Premium Transit Corridors: Incremental Improvements
195-BC – Broward Boulevard to Civic Center
This route provides express commuter transit service between the Fort Lauderdale Tri-Rail Station located at Broward Boulevard in Broward County and the Civic Center Metrorail Station in Miami-Dade County via I-95. Service headways are 30 minutes during the AM/PM peak-hour. Revenue service began on November 23, 2015.
195-SC – Sheridan Street to Civic Center
This route provides express commuter transit service between the Sheridan Street Tri-Rail Station in Broward County and the Civic Center Metrorail Station in Miami-Dade County via I-95. Service headways are 30 minutes during the AM/PM peak-hour. Revenue service began on November 23, 2015.
East-West Corridor (SR 836 Express Bus Service)
This route would provide premium express transit service along SR 836 from west Miami-Dade County Tamiami Station (SW 8th Street and SW 147th Avenue) to the Miami Intermodal Center (MIC) and Downtown Miami via SW 137th Avenue/SR 836 Extension as well as via the Homestead Extension of the Florida Turnpike (HEFT). This route will feature three legs.
- The first leg (Line A) will provide premium express transit service from the proposed Tamiami Station (park-and-ride/transit facility located at SW 8th Street and SW 147th Avenue) to Downtown Miami via SW 8th Street, SW 137th Avenue and SR 836. Service headways will be 10 minutes during the AM/PM peak-hour. The planned long-term improvements for this route will be completed by 2019 using 9 new 60-foot alternative fuel buses.
- The second leg (Line B) will provide premium express transit service from the proposed Panther Station (Florida International University’s Modesto A. Maidique Campus (MMC) to the MIC via SW 8th Street, SR 821/HEFT and SR 836. This route will operate all day with 20 minute headways. The planned long-term improvements for this route will be completed by 2019 using 3 new 60-foot alternative fuel buses.
- The third leg (Line C) will provide premium express transit service from the proposed Dolphin Station (NW 12th Street and HEFT) to Downtown Miami via SR 836. Service headways will be 10 minutes during the AM/PM peak-hour. The planned long-term improvements for this route will coincide with the opening of the proposed Dolphin Station in late 2017. This route will feature 8 new 60-foot alternative fuel buses.
East-West Corridor (Flagler Bus Rapid Transit – BRT)
The East-West Corridor in 2002 was identified as one of eight Rapid Transit Corridors in the People’s Transportation Plan (PTP). On February, 19, 2015, the Miami-Dade MPO Governing Board directed that the East-West Corridor (inclusive of SR 112) be implemented in an expedited manner assuming full Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) as the transit modal technology, pursuant to MPO Resolution No. 01-15. The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is currently in the process of selecting a consultant to study the implementation of Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) service and infrastructure along SR 968/Flagler Street from SR 821/HEFT to SR 5/US-1/Biscayne Blvd. The primary study objective is to evaluate the implementation of a cost-effective, high-ridership BRT system within the SR 968/Flagler Street Corridor that is to be part of an overall interconnected premium transit network. It is anticipated that FDOT will select a qualified consultant by the second quarter of 2016.
DTPW is coordinating the bus purchase component of this project which includes purchase of 10 new 60-foot alternative fuel buses.
Beach Connection (Baylink)
The Beach Corridor Transit Connection Study was completed by DTPW, the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and the cities of Miami and Miami Beach in June 2015. The study updated the 2004 Baylink Study and culminated with the selection of a preferred alternative for modal technology and alignment.
Recent momentum for implementing a rapid transit solution to connect Miami Beach with the mainland is demonstrated in the commitments by the County and the Cities of Miami and Miami Beach. Currently, the County and the Cities are in the process of approving a Memorandum of Understanding with FDOT that will pave the way for initiating the study phase of this project. While the City of Miami Beach may independently move forward with funding the Miami Beach Connector loop in their jurisdiction with local and state dollars, the County proposes to pursue Federal New Starts funding for the Miami Connector loop. In the future, this loop can be completed by running an extension of the system through the Julia Tuttle Causeway.