South Miami Intermodal Transportation Plan
It is a great study and we are working to implement all the proposed projects.Shari Kamali, Assistant City Manager
The City of South Miami desires to enhance the existing transportation system and mobility choices available to residents, workers, and visitors to the city. Despite its many positive attributes, challenges exist within the transportation system, making it difficult for the city to maintain the Pleasant Living ideal. The beginnings of a greenway network are in place; however, connectivity improvements need to be identified to solve challenges presented by significant gaps in the greenway network.
The Miami-Dade Metrorail passes through the city with the South Miami station located just north of Sunset Drive, but pedestrian access to the station is severely limited by the US 1/South Dixie Highway barrier that runs through the city. Sidewalks are found on many streets within South Miami, but a shortage of well-designed crosswalks leads to accessibility and safety challenges. A grid network of streets is in place in most parts of the city, but it can be difficult to ensure motorists travel at a respectful speed in and around South Miami.
The city is attempting to re-integrate these functions through complete streets principles, which seek to provide a comfortable transportation system for all modes and for users of all ages and abilities. An integral component of this effort is to establish and approve the South Miami Intermodal Transportation Plan (SMITP), which identifies an interconnected network of mobility and safety improvements based on smart growth and complete streets principles. The community-based SMITP advances the convenient and efficient use of motorized and non-motorized transportation and addresses issues such as vehicular circulation, parking, pedestrian/bicyclist movements, and public transportation, and includes short- and long-term implementation strategies.
The primary outcomes of the SMITP, once implemented, are to:
- Provide people with sustainable, safe, and effective alternatives to personal motorized vehicles.
- Reduce vehicle trips.
- Reduce vehicular congestion.
- Increase transit ridership.
The idea of an Intermodal Transportation Plan for the City of South Miami was generated by the City of South Miami Green Task Force. The plan was completed in January 2015, which includes an implementation section listing Priority One Scenario, Priority Two Scenario, and Priority Three Scenario projects with the goal of implementing Priority One Scenario projects within the first fiscal year. Implementation of the SMITP will likely occur over time through a variety of different projects, funded through a broad range of sources, and built by several different agencies including the City and its transportation partners at FDOT and Miami-Dade County. The implementation plan respects the limits of affordability and provides a strategy that the City could potentially follow to maximize the user benefit while keeping costs within reason of available funding sources.
It should be noted that many of the recommendations might be implemented through resurfacing, maintenance, or other transportation projects that would occur anyway and, therefore, would incur only an incremental cost associated with the additional intermodal transportation infrastructure.
- September 6, 2011: The commission passed a resolution recognizing the importance of bicycling in transportation and recreation for the betterment of residents and the environment.
- April 10, 2012: The Green Task Force prepared a draft Greenways proposal.
- September 24, 2012: The Green Task Force requested to develop greenway systems for walkability and presented the draft Greenways Plan. The commission approved $100,000 to create an Intermodal Transportation Plan.
- January 17, 2013: The SMITP grant application (with a letter of support from the Green Task Force) was submitted to the metropolitan planning organization (MPO).
- April 12, 2013: The RFQ #PW-S2013-10 was released for the SMITP.
- May 2013: The MPO awarded a $21,000 grant for the SMITP.
- June 18, 2013: The commission approved a resolution authorizing the city manager to negotiate a professional service agreement for the SMITP.
- December 18, 2013: The SMITP contract was signed.
- February 20, 2014: Interagency Coordination Meeting 1
- March 3, 2014: Green Task Force Workshop
- March 8, 2014: Bike Path Inspection
- March 20, 2014: Public Charrette
- July 15, 2014: Presentation to Green Task Force
- July 17, 2014: Interagency Coordination Meeting 2
- August 12, 2014: Presentation to Green Task Force
- September 2014: Draft SMITP Master Plan Report
- October 22, 2014: Revised draft SMITP resubmitted for administrative review
- December 4, 2014: Revised draft SMITP Report submittal
- January 24, 2015: Final SMITP Report submittal
The future availability of grant funding could impact the timing and priority order of the projects listed in the SMITP. The priority list assumes the city has approximately $100,000 to implement the “early-win” projects within the first fiscal year in advance of receiving any outside grant funding or assistance from transportation partner agencies. In addition, the city, along with public and private sector stakeholders, should seek grant funding to implement key components of the SMITP.
The SMITP enhances the everyday quality of life for South Miami residents. Shifting demographic trends show more people are choosing to live in walkable urban areas and desire access to a variety of transportation modes. This gives an increasing number of people the option not to choose automobiles for everyday travel. This plan also encourages a shift in the city’s modal split, increasing the use of transit, biking, and walking. By diversifying modes of transportation, like transit and rail, more people can move through a corridor by means other than motor vehicles. Another critical benefit is the incorporation of green features. These design elements can improve the visual impact of the roadway, assist in stormwater management, combat pollution from emissions, reduce exposed pavement, and decrease the city’s heat island effect.
The SMITP will benefit South Miami by:
- Improving safety by designing for and accommodating all travel modes and users, including bicyclists, pedestrians, drivers, transit users, children, seniors, and persons with disabilities.
- Increasing the overall capacity of the transportation network while offering options to avoid traffic.
- Creating more walking and cycling opportunities, which improves public health and wellbeing.
- Fostering greater social equity by improving ease of movement for those who cannot, or choose not to, own or drive a car.
- Encouraging children and elder adults to be more physically active.
- Creating increased social, civic, and economic activity on streets.
- Providing incentives for economic revitalization by reducing transportation costs and travel time while increasing property values and job growth.
- Reducing the demand on existing infrastructure by incorporating stormwater management into street designs.
- Improving the return on infrastructure investments by integrating sidewalks, bike lanes, transit amenities, and safe crossings into the initial design of a project, sparing the expense of later retrofits.
- Improving the quality of place by creating vibrant livable centers through increased walking and bicycling, and by promoting suitable denser development patterns where appropriate.
- Providingenvironmental benefits from reduced congestion through the use of alternative transportation options and increased stormwater management.
Municipalities That Have Completed This Recommendation
- Coconut Creek
- Cooper City
- Coral Gables
- Cutler Bay
- Dania Beach
- Delray Beach
- El Portal
- Fort Lauderdale
- Hallandale Beach
- Key West
- Lighthouse Point
- Mangonia Park
- Miami Gardens
- Miami Lakes
- North Bay Village
- North Miami
- Oakland Park
- Pembroke Pines
- South Miami
- West Miami
- West Park