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IN PROGRESS: Miami Intermodal Center

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Posted on Mon, May. 23, 2005



This is one of those rare South Florida transportation stories with serious happy-ending potential.

It features political foresight, logic and bureaucracies setting aside competing agendas for the common good.


The $1.4 billion Miami Intermodal Center will feature a consolidated rental car facility now under way east of Le Jeune Road, and a still-to-be-built Central Station where taxis, local and Greyhound buses, Metrorail and Tri-Rail will converge.

A lot of hope and tax dollars are riding on the center: It's supposed to dramatically reduce traffic congestion inside the airport and create a transit hub like nothing seen before in Florida.

Ten years from now, when the MIC is bustling with commuters, tourists and airport employees (and, hopefully, bearing a more interesting name) nobody will even notice how the decisions of 2005 spared them plenty of sweat and shoe leather.

Full article: Miami Herald

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I can't wait for all the connectivity and possibilities that will come with this....thing!

I like this from the article:

This is the dream scenario: One train leaving Florida International University will run through the MIC and then up Northwest 27th Avenue toward Dolphins Stadium and the Broward County line. The next train also leaves FIU and passes through the MIC, but swings downtown on its way to Dadeland.

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I've always used "the MIC" as in "mick", which I believe is the de facto pronunciation.

Maybe we should have a naming contest to see what else we can come up with. :)

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Miami Intermodal Center, in a nutshell

Overview of MIC facility.

The MIC/MIA Connector (green) will connect Miami International Airport with the facility, which consists of a consolidated rental car facility (left), and multi-modal station (MIC Core), connecting Tri-Rail, Amtrak, Metrorail, and bus (Metrobus and potentially Greyhound).


MIC facility, side view:


An overview of the area... Major road improvements (shown in blue) are slated for Le Jeune Road (NW 42nd Avenue, MIA's main entrance and a major north-south artery), including improving the access ramps between the airport and state road 836 (Dolphin Expressway). The Potential Associated Development area (gray) is slated for possible hotel, retail, and entertainment facilities. The future Metrorail east-west line is shown in orange.


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The most noticeable progress that has been made has been on the roadways, although we're starting to see stuff come out

of the ground for the MIC building itself.

New direct access ramp from Airport service road ("Central Blvd.") to westbound 836 is under construction. Right now, you

have to fight traffic on Le Jeune to get onto the entrance ramp, and go through one light once you have already turned

onto the ramp. This pic is from Florida DOT:


A closeup of the ramp aerial you just saw (looking south)... I really like the style of the lightpoles:


You can already see the new access ramp to 836 west already has its signage in place. Le Jeune Road is being redesigned

into a mini-expressway in vicinity of the Airport. The roadbed is being laid out here in this pic. Traffic lights will be removed

at many places that cause bottlenecking of traffic. The roadway will also be rebuilt slightly higher than at present, as parts of

it, especially the northbound lanes, can become flooded after heavy rains.


This is my favorite view, a panorama of the entire future MIC complex, from west to east. Le Jeune Road is on the far left,

and the present Tri-Rail station and Hertz rental garage are on the far right. For months I swore the project was stalled,

because it seemed like nothing was getting done. Then suddenly the land was leveled and we started seeing rebar coming

out of the ground. Also from FDOT:


When the RCF is finished, all the rental agencies presently scattered east of the Airport will operate from this facility. For tourists

the rental car zone is often confusing and difficult to navigate. The "potential development area" on the map is where they

are presently found.

The Tri-Rail station also has to be moved into the MIC Core without disrupting service.

These pics are a bit dated from my last trip in the area. The entrance ramps to Miami International Airport are also being reconfigured

and exiting traffic has been diverted to temporary ramps and roadways. I'll post some pics of my own next time I am around.

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That area will be rezoned as mixed-use, possibly for hotels, retail, entertainment, restaurants, meetings space, etc. So not only is the MIC a train/bus/taxi/rental car station, but it will also have what I would call a mini-mall. :)

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Here's the schedule:

The Consolidated Rental Car Facility will be the first part to open, by 2007. Shuttle buses will transport passengers between the airport and the MIC until the peoplemover is finished.

By 2009, the Central Station will be open for business, and the airport peoplemover (MIC/MIA Connector) will replace the buses. Tri-Rail, Amtrak, and bus should be in service by then.

By 2011, the Metrorail platform should be online (Earlington Heights Connector), although Miami-Dade Transit hopes to have it ready by 2010.

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^Well I hope the money goes to the appropriate place. As long as it doesn't postpone this project. Lord knows it's already going to take forever for it to all be finished!

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