Dolphin Southwest Extension promises to provide relief for western commuters

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The long-held idea that “you can’t always get what you want” is on the way out for western Miami-Dade County commuters – as a new extension of the SR 836 Dolphin Expressway is on its way in for tens of thousands of residents there who feel choked off from the rest of the world.

They could soon start singing a new tune as a proposed new transportation corridor frees them up to swiftly access existing highways and modern transit to and from the rest of the metropolitan area. Yes transit, too! And it’s about time.

Rush hour from West Dade and West Kendall can take 55-minutes for daily commuters just to get on an expressway like the Florida Turnpike or the Palmetto Expressway. All that traffic is flowing heavily in one direction, from west to east, as commuters leave the western suburbs to travel to employment centers at FIU, Doral, and points east.

And then it all happens again during evening rush hour, which for some commuters, totals upward of three hours a day.

The southwest area of Miami-Dade County has been the fastest growing area of the county with no additional major transportation infrastructure proposed to accommodate that growth. The Turnpike and the Palmetto Expressway alone cannot address the existing demand or the projected capacity needed to provide mobility in this area.

This has long meant longer commutes and a negative impact on the quality of life for residents and businesses. MDX’s proposed new State Road 836 North-South Extension Project would provide additional north-south connectivity and enhance mobility throughout the area. The project would provide greater accessibility to major activity and employment centers located north and east of the rapidly growing residential areas in the south and west.

MDX is currently conducting the planning phase to evaluate the potential environmental, social, natural, and physical impact of the proposed project, but they are now ready for the next phase, with the support of the community – making this one of their highest priorities.

The expressway would also include XT Lanes (Express/Technology) as a platform for an MDX-operated express transit service, as well as an envelope for future rapid transit to be implemented by Miami-Dade County as part of the Smart Plan.

The corridor basically would extend from where the Dolphin ends today at NW 137th Avenue and NW 12th Street and move west and south to approximately SW 120th Street. 

Project benefits would include:

The corridor would improve hurricane/emergency evacuation routes and travel times;

Splits east/west traffic flow on arterials between SR 836 Extension and the HEFT;

Evaluates multimodal transportation opportunities; and

Can serve as a potential western barrier to urban sprawl.

With successful implantation of this project, the day will come when anyone living between SW 167th Avenue and 137th Avenue in West Dade or West Kendall will be able to access the SR 836 Dolphin Expressway – within five or 10 minutes of leaving their house.

Area residents are encouraged to stay tuned to MDX updates over the next few months. The project will need public support leading up to design and construction by 2019. A show of hands in the residential and business community is vital to ensuring the project successfully moves through these various approval processes.

It’s time for residents to get what they want – quality of life.

For information, contact MDX at or call 305-637-6277.

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About the Author

Bill Kress
Bill Kress, President of Kress Communications, is an editorial consultant with the Community Newspapers, covering business news, non-profits, and municipal government. He is an award-winning public relations practitioner, news reporter, photographer, and a prolific social mediologist. Reach Bill at or call 305-763-2429.

11 Comments on "Dolphin Southwest Extension promises to provide relief for western commuters"

  1. Please bulld a metro raíl to kendal. We need it badly.

  2. Hey, Bill. I’ve got an idea. While you’re gleefully plumping for more highways, the spoliation of ag zones and the westward movement of the urban development boundary, why not just take it to the next step and take a grader to what’s left of the glades? Just pave those pesky swamps over and solve all of our parking problems forever.

    You’ve been around long enough to know what happens when the developers and their well-paid politicians promise not to build on the lands new highways make accessible. Those promises vanish quickly, and what’s left of our greatest natural treasure vanishes with them.

    The westward extension of 836 won’t serve as a barrier to westward expansion- that just makes no sense. Like every highway before it, it will serve as a spur to westward expansion.

    What needs public support is implementation of our existing SMART plan for rapid mass transit, and a firm commitment to maintain the urban development boundary where it is, without further exception. What needs public support is electing folks to public office who actually care about the public and not their contributors in the construction and development industries.

    South Florida needs continued growth, but it has to be dense, and based on access to really workable mass-transit. Sprawl, and the highway-building that spawns it, is responsible for the traffic mess we’re in now, and more of it only makes those problems worse.


  3. The map shows the endpoint at SW 136 St, not 120 St. the route should turn west at 136 St and connect to Krome Av.

  4. Camila Quaresma | January 3, 2018 at 9:16 pm | Reply

    Hello Bill,

    It is very unfortunate to see an article written without any consideration to all other possible traffic solutions in the area.

    I couldn’t explain in better words, as Wayne Brody mentioned above: “What needs public support is implementation of our existing SMART plan for rapid mass transit, and a firm commitment to maintain the urban development boundary where it is, without further exception.

    Before jumping into the conclusion on what residents want, try taking a community approach, and consider the benefits of SMART planning and less developing towards the unique and only Everglades. The future of our natural park depends on it!

    It is for the benefit of our present community, their children and future generations.

  5. You stupid politicians need to focus 100% on expanding our current transit train system. Forget about building more roads!

    as far back as I can recall, the palmetto expy and turnpike have been under construction for more than 10+ years, with no end in sight!

  6. Way more than 10 years. Everyhwere you go they keep doing more & more construction and it has not helped one bit with our traffic congestion. Its getting stupid ridiculous.

    Another thing that they never mention, with all the “road rage” shootings the happen frequently in Miami. People are loosing there patience in traffic and taking it out on one another, blame that on our shitty traffic woes.

    Something needs to be fixed fast, patience is wearing thin.

  7. No more road construction…..Please consider only rail improvements.

  8. Excellent article! Thank you. Highways are the best mode of transportation in our age as electric cars drive themselves and ridesharing reaches ever greater efficiencies. Those proposing rail fail to consider how costly and dated rail is.

  9. @Andre

    Really? The train systems seem highly effective in all other major cities in the united States.

    Maybe if they would stop spending all the money on expanding lanes and used our tax dollar wiser. Expand the metrorail trains already, enough with the road expansions for gods sake. Its a waste of our tax dollars

    The only way to get cars off the road will be by expanding our metrorail train system. Expanding our current roads does not take vehicles off the roadways in anyway.

    Geez, its simple logic, why our politicians always so dumb!

  10. Armando R Brana | January 18, 2018 at 2:33 pm | Reply

    Yes, excellent idea. The County can’t expand West since the land does not belong to Miami Dade but to the Feds. This roadway should be build as soons as possible, along with another following Krome Avenue.

  11. Jorge Medina | March 13, 2018 at 2:14 pm | Reply

    It feels like metrorail all over again. Half the job needed to do the right thing the first time. No exits between 137th avenue and the terminus at 157th avenue. Good job MDX.

    Thi as is already a toll road so payment would be almost automatic. Nothing for county to ask the state for but start up money.

    Please do the right thing and take it south to Silver Palm area or just convert Krome Ave to the expressway extension south to Florida City.

    All the resident South if Kendall will vote for anyone that makes this happen.

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