The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) announced on Dec. 15 that Miami-Dade County will receive $900,000 for Transit Oriented Development (TOD) planning at four stations of the proposed Beach Corridor Trunkline from downtown Miami to Miami Beach, and at six stations of the proposed extension of the Miami Metromover to NW 41st Street.
“The FTA funding will help Miami-Dade County boost smart economic development and mobility through mixed-use development around transit stations,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava. “I’m grateful to the Federal Transit Administration, Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao, and Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart for their continuous support for transportation solutions in our county.”
The Beach Corridor is one of the six rapid transit corridors of the Strategic Miami Area Rapid Transit (SMART) Plan. The Beach Corridor runs from the Design District/Midtown Miami and Downtown Miami to the Miami Beach Convention Center area.
This is the third grant award from FTA towards TOD projects along the SMART Plan corridors. Previously, FTA awarded $1.04 million for the South Dade Corridor in 2019 and $960,000 for the East-West Corridor in 2016.
“We are extremely thankful for the support of the Federal Transit Administration and their recent funding announcement for Miami-Dade County,” said Alice N. Bravo, PE, director of the county’s Department of Transportation and Public Works (DTPW). “Transit-oriented developments are a vital component for improving mobility in a community by providing more access to public transportation and we’re thrilled to begin our TOD study along the SMART Plan’s Beach Corridor.”
On Jan. 30, 2020, the Miami-Dade Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) Governing Board selected the Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) as elevated rubber tire technology for the Beach Corridor Trunkline; extension of the Metromover along Miami Avenue to NW 41st Street for the Beach Corridor Design District extension, and dedicated lanes for bus/trolley along Washington Avenue for the Beach Corridor Convention Center extension.
DTPW will prepare a Master TOD Plan for the Beach Corridor to assess existing infrastructure needs through various assessments and facilitate engagement with the private sector by identifying TOD opportunities. The plan addresses the housing market, water/wastewater capacity, bicycle/pedestrian needs and station area plans. The study also will include outreach to the public.
The Miami-Dade County Department of Regulatory and Economic Resources (RER) will analyze potential for market development, (including redevelopment and new development), resulting in a corridor wide TOD implementation strategy based upon public stakeholder and private developer involvement. An analysis will identify opportunities where Public-Private partnerships will be most beneficial to local economic expansion and recommend strategies to incentivize private participation.
The county already has implemented a value capture district, the Transportation Infrastructure Improvement District (TIID), which pledges future ad-valorem tax revenue increases within the SMART Plan areas to help fund rapid transit projects. Potentially this could demonstrate to partners the county’s commitment to furthering TOD along the corridor, spurring even greater interest in SMART Corridor TOD. FTA’s TOD Pilot Program was established under the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) in 2012 and amended by the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act in 2015. The program is authorized through fiscal year 2020, and extended one year by the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021 and Other Extensions Act.