Turning left from Lehman will be safer

Turning left from Lehman will be saferIf you regularly turn left onto Collins Avenue from William Lehman Causeway then you surely will know what I am talking about. I have always been somewhat uncomfortable making this turn because of the lack of lines on the asphalt defining the two left-turn lanes leaving everyone to their own devices. In fact, I raised the issue when I was serving on the City Advisory Committee. Quite often, folks in the right-hand left turn lane drift over into the left. Many times I have been forced into the yellow cross-hatched portion of the left lane next to the median to avoid being hit from the right. Aside from the yellow area being a “no-fly zone”, pedestrians often stand there while waiting to cross the street. If the right-hand lane of Collins Avenue is blocked for some reason that further tends to push those in the right-hand left turn lane to the left.

As you probably know, the Florida Department of Transportation is currently repaving A1A from 192nd Street up to County Line Road at the north end of Golden Beach. The Sunny Isles Beach Commission has been receiving regular status reports from FDOT. Given the open lines of communication with FDOT, I took the opportunity to advise them of the foregoing issues. I am happy to report that after investigation, FDOT agreed with me. Its maintenance department will install “lane extension skip lines” to guide the eastbound left turn vehicles through the intersection sometime near the beginning of September or October 2013 depending upon its workload.

Beginning in 2015, FDOT is scheduled to repave the remainder of Sunny Isles Beach on Collins Avenue from Bay view Drive to 192nd Street. Part of that project is the proposed improvement and reconfiguration of the pedestrian crosswalks located in the Lehman Causeway area mentioned above as well as at the westbound entrance to Lehman Causeway located on northbound Collins Avenue. A new crosswalk is also proposed for Collins Avenue just north of Government Center. It goes without saying that all of these enhancements will make our beautiful Sunny Isles Beach safer for our most precious resource.

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