Wednesday, February 20, 2013

A traffic circle for 136 and Old Cutler? Palmetto Bay should get on board. Surrounding Palmetto Bay residents should be engaged

There is an exciting multi-governmental project pending, one that everyone in Palmetto Bay needs to be aware of and understand the profound and long-term implications.  Pinecrest passed the following resolution at the Tuesday, January 15, 2013, Pinecrest Regular Council Meeting.  It was surprising that there were no elected officials, not the mayor nor any of the council members, from Palmetto Bay present before the Pinecrest Council to speak in support of this resolution/project.  This joint project will involve Miami-Dade County, Pinecrest and Palmetto Bay.  It deserves a serious public discussion.

CLICK HERE to view the January 9, 2013, Pinecrest Manager Report, the Pinecrest Resolution of support and the proposed Interlocal agreement, all total six (6) pages.  Obviously, the Palmetto Bay capital plan and operating budget will need to be amended to reflect the proposed direct and ancillary costs. Thre are many details contained in these documents that will provide greater understanding of the scope and costs of this project.

Pinecrest has been very active in involving its residents on public works projects. The proposed traffic circle at SW 136 Street and Old Cutler in no exception.  This project has been in discussion for many years and was originally brought up while I was mayor along with Mayor Vrooman of Cutler Bay and County Commissioner Katy Sorenson when the Cutler Bay traffic circles were originally proposed.  Now those Culter Bay traffic circles are moving forward to completion so new areas can begin to move forward.

Pinecrest discussed this project at both their December, 2012 and January, 2013, regular council meetings, yet we have yet to hear anything officially presented at the Palmetto Bay council meetings. Pinecrest neighbors have been engaged. In fact, information is that some neighborhoods have signed off on the project already, that their street will be protected during the construction. 

This is an exciting project, but it will have profound short term impact on the Old Cutler Road commuters for the period of time that it creates an intense bottle neck right at Old Cutler at the entry point into Palmetto Bay.  Residents should be engaged so that they can have their input early rather than springing this one them and needlessly raising the ire of area residents who will have temporary cut throughs and detours directed through their area.

I hope that this current Palmetto Bay Mayor and Council do not let this project drop. The public should be engaged and this project should be made public at the Committee of the Whole meeting held (tonight) on Wednesday, 2/20/2013.


  1. south dade residentFebruary 20, 2013

    That corner needs fixing. Half the time the lead lights aren't working and then if you turn left northbound off Old Cutler and into Pinecrest, you have the yield signage, but the traffic entering from old cutler has a stop light. Well, you can't move from the yield sign, because you don't have a traffic light facing you there to let you know you can go. That or I totally missed the light.

  2. I love the traffic circles you put in. I hope that we will see more of them in Dade county. Traffic flows much better. Can we get one at 82 and coral reef drive?

  3. What do we have to do to push the mayor and council into supporting this traffic circle? It is such a great idea. 136 and Old Cutler would really help.

  4. I wish you would have attended the meeting last night. Not one word was mentioned about this traffic circle. It appears that the residents are on a need to know basis and Shelley thinks we do not need to know.

  5. Gene, where can we get more information on this matter?

  6. I cannot find any information on the village website about the traffic circle. Help.

  7. I searched "Traffic circle" on the village website. What a waste of time. There is nothing about pending projects, only the past traffic circles. We need up to date information.

  8. I read thru part of the resolution from Pinecrest and there is mention of traffic circles on 60th Avenue, not Old Cutler & 136. What they are attempting to do on Old Cutler is to have the USDA transfer over a portion of their property to make a "PARK" on the corner of 136th and Old Cutler. I think Coral Gables may have a say on that since a portion of Coral Gables abutts the USDA lands...

    1. The regional park idea was first discussed back when I was Mayor and discussed with then Mayor Gary Matzner. I am unaware of any revived effort or support for creation of a large active park at the USDA land. We obtained permission for a limited portion of land for a joint-jurisdictional fire station. This small portion literally took an act of congress. Gaining significant park land will not be easy. I have seen nothing done by the current council on that effort. It is low-hanging fruit. They only need to close the deal. There was to be another fire station at the PBVC, but there is a rumor circulating that a meeting was held in October 2012 and that the fire station may be moved blocks south into Cutler Bay. There have been neither confirmation of this rumor nor objection for the current mayor or any member of the council.