Broward Commissioners to Consider Dixie Highway Name Change

Legislation proposed by Broward Mayor Dale V.C. Holness said there is a "legacy of racism" associated with the term "Dixie"

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Broward County Commissioners will be considering whether to change the name of Dixie Highway.

A motion to discuss the renaming of the roadway, which is being proposed by Mayor Dale V.C. Holness, is on the agenda for Tuesday's commission meeting.

"Since before the Civil War, the term 'Dixie' has represented a racialized and romanticized reference to the antebellum South. The name recalls the lasting effects of slavery and Jim Crow and the harsh realities of those who came before us," Holness' proposed legislation reads.

Holness, who said there is a "legacy of racism" associated with the term "Dixie" in the legislation, would instead have the roadway recognize a civil rights leader such as Sojourner Truth or Harriett Tubman.

Originally a stretch of highway connecting Chicago and Miami, the effort to remove the "Dixie" name has picked up steam in recent years. In Riviera Beach the name was changed to honor former President Barack Obama, and a Miami-Dade commissioner is also leading an effort to change the name in that county.

In Broward, Dixie Highway runs through Dania Beach, Deerfield Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood, Oakland Park, Pompano Beach, and Wilton Manors.

Even if commissioners approve the measure, since portions of Dixie Highway are either state roads or in municipalities, the county would need the help of the Florida Legislature and local governments to rename the roadway.

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