Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Short-Sighted Manipulation of People of Kendall. Guest Blog by Richard Grosso

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez’s desire to alleviate traffic congestion in West Kendall is understandable. His attack on those raising concerns is not. The opposition to the extension of the 836 highway outside of the county’s urban boundary is based, not on “misinformation,” but serious concern, based on history and the realities of development practices and economics, that the county would be making a huge mistake.

Addressing traffic problems in the 21st century with a 1970s solution of building more highways is a bad investment given what we now know about how quickly new roads fill up with new traffic and open areas to new development, and about the critical need to shift away from infrastructure for cars and toward real mass transit. Miami-Dade County’s land use plan specifically reflects these understandings and, for these reasons and others, contains explicit prohibitions against building new public infrastructure — like this highway extension — beyond the Urban Development Boundary.

The looming decision of whether to invest $650 million into another highway expansion or modern mass transit comes at a pivotal point in this county’s history, as it is coming to terms with the necessity of re-working its water supply and flood-protection system, reducing its vulnerability to climate change and sea level rise, and restoring the Everglades upon which it relies for so many economic, recreational and other purposes. It is concerning that some in county leadership may not understand that building a highway through the Bird Drive Basin wetlands would compromise the restoration project water managers are still designing for those lands to prevent flooding and restore previously impacted wetlands in western Miami-Dade County.

The PR campaign to promote this highway may be selling fool’s gold to West Kendall residents, and the county would soon be looking for yet another new road in a few years when this one fills up with new traffic — whether or not it leads to new development in the area.

Miami Herald

1 comment:

mpotter said...

This traffic congestion is telling you there are too many people in South Florida already. Resources have been stretched to the point that the fact they are lowering water quality standards so there will be enough pooh water to go around should tell you something. Hopefully some will become frustrated to the point that they relocate. Don't build another expressway through the everglades. Enforce the boundaries!