E-scooter fees help fund guarded bicycle lanes in downtown Miami

Dive Brief:

  • Miami will add about 3 miles of protected bike and scooter lanes on occupied downtown corridors as element of a new application partially funded by fees on electric powered scooters. 
  • Beneath a system accredited by the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners very last week, the metropolis will set up concrete limitations alongside the new lanes and include pedestrian ramps to adjacent sidewalks. All pedestrian crossings in the impacted region will also be upgraded to increase visibility. 
  • The roughly $2 million upgrades, construction of which has already begun, will be partially funded by $1 million from the town of Miami’s micromobility fund. The remainder will be compensated for with road impression costs.

Dive Perception:

Florida is household to some of the country’s most perilous cities for pedestrians, according to a Smart Development America report. Critics have dinged Miami for not subsequent by way of on a 2009 Bicycle Master System intended to “completely transform Miami into a bicycle welcoming town,” the wide the vast majority of which has not been created. 

The recently authorised shielded lanes will be set up together three miles of downtown streets, covering spots where there is previously major use of scooters and bikes by residents and guests. 

“This is extremely vital. Miami motorists are not extremely protected. I’ve ridden a bike, I’ve ridden a scooter in downtown Miami and I truly feel unsafe on the streets,” reported Kevin Amézaga, executive director of the mobility group Miami Riders Alliance. “We accept that in downtown Miami, automobiles simply cannot be the way we expand, but we need to give men and women harmless alternate options.”

The objective is to eventually construct an considerable community of micromobility lanes  including bollards, concrete boundaries and painted bicycle bins  that would join large pieces of downtown, somewhat than simply including lanes to a handful of streets, explained Carlos Cruz-Casas, assistant director for mobility in the Miami-Dade County Section of Transportation and Community Is effective. The “proactive” exertion, he said, will enable create “a additional inclusive transportation community” and also further more the county’s Eyesight Zero plans, which request to get rid of visitors deaths and serious accidents by 2030. 

“Whilst we’re seeking back again to recognize the leads to of collisions and crashes, we are also creating the infrastructure to stop them so that we don’t have to rely figures later on,” he mentioned. The division is going at “a million miles an hour” to revamp the county’s transportation community for basic safety and sustainability goals, he additional.

Miami has seen quite a few variations in micromobility above the past yr. The county suspended use of shared vehicles for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic, returning them to metropolis streets in October 2020. The fleets were then suspended for a brief period of time all around the commencing of 2021 in excess of fears about underage riders and sidewalk litter, the Miami Herald reported. The latter pause led to new restrictions about sidewalk litter and distribution of motor vehicles throughout downtown, as properly as new velocity limitations. 

In the summer season of 2020, commissioners debated using the micromobility service fees to include projected spending plan shortfalls because of the coronavirus pandemic, Miami Nowadays News reported. Micromobility supporters, nevertheless, argued the money should remain siloed for revamping the long-overdue bicycle grasp approach and in the end the budget deficit was reduce than expected. 

As scooters have develop into much more preferred and proven transportation resources in towns, transportation departments close to the country are rethinking their infrastructure programs to make focused lanes or paths that can accommodate them. A lot of metropolitan areas  like Indianapolis, Atlanta and Santa Monica, California,  have expected micromobility operators include costs or pay into infrastructure resources to shell out for the new construction.

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