South Florida by the Numbers: Focus on traffic and transportation

Midtown interchange (Via the Florida State Road Department)
Midtown interchange (Via the Florida State Road Department)

“South Florida by the numbers” is a web feature that catalogues the most notable, quirky and surprising real estate statistics.

It is easily THE single-most discussed topic in all of South Florida. It is the reason you (better) leave an hour early, and the reason you are usually running late. It lights up your Facebook stream and has you frantically checking your GPS. Art Basel-goers are bracing for it, and some residents are choosing to just get out of town because of it.

It is South Florida traffic – and it is only getting worse. With so many people coming from so many places with so many cars and so few viable public transportation options, our highways are simply choked to death.

If there’s a silver lining to having reached “critical mass” on our traffic issue, it’s that South Florida political and business leaders are fully aware of the problems, and are working together to develop solutions. While no panacea will solve all our traffic issues overnight – or even for the foreseeable future – some of the creative ideas, proposals and partnerships below at least offer some hope. So cross your fingers, pump those brakes, take some deep, cleansing breaths, and enjoy this “Traffic and Transportation” edition of South Florida by the Numbers.

7 and 12: Miami’s ranking on two U.S. indexes for worst traffic congestion. Unfortunately, our city has one of the least-developed mass transit systems among the world’s major metropolitan areas. [Business Insider]

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$245 million: Estimated asking price the CSX cargo company has proposed for 35 miles of track it operates in western and southern Miami-Dade. The county wants those tracks to create an east-west passenger rail line that would run between Miami International Airport and the western suburbs. Miami-Dade Commissioner Bovo had proposed an earlier $102 million plan, prior to CSX disclosing its initial asking price. [Miami Herald]

28: Number of stations along a proposed “Tri-Rail Coastal Link” that would run roughly parallel to Federal Highway, in the heart of eastern communities from Jupiter to Miami. Planners believe the new line would spur development in downtrodden areas and raise significant tax revenue in all three counties. [Sun Sentinel]

125: Miles per hour, the top speed of All Aboard Florida’s recently named “Brightline” passenger trains. Once completed, Brightline will take travelers from Miami to Orlando and back, with stops in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. [The Real Deal]

$120 million: Estimated cost to transform 10 miles of the currently barren route underneath Miami’s Metrorail along South Dixie Highway into the Underline; a “recreational eden” complete with gardens, dog parks, workout stations, sports courts, a skateboard rink and food kiosks. [The Real Deal]

This column is produced by the Master Brokers Forum, a network of South Florida’s elite real estate professionals where membership is by invitation only and based on outstanding production, as well as ethical and professional behavior.