Wynwood Neighborhoods Feel Left Out by County's New Transit Plan

The Smart Plan, as it is called, is part of a bigger plan to prioritize mass transit in Miami-Dade County to alleviate traffic and provide other transit options

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Leaders from several communities near the Wynwood area say a big transit plan for Miami-Dade County is leaving them out despite all the people who live, work and visit the area that need a train station there.

Community leaders in the Midtown and Edgewater areas say they are being overlooked when it comes to bringing a major mass transit option to their area.  The Smart Plan, as it is called, is part of a bigger plan to prioritize mass transit in the county to alleviate traffic and provide other transit options.

“We've been advocating for a much needed commuter rail along this corridor for many, many years,” said Albert Garcia, chairman of the Wynwood Business Improvement district.

Garcia said the plan initially called for five train stations to go along the northeast corridor from Aventura to Downtown Miami using the existing Brightline tracks. But a proposal on Tuesday’s county commission agenda calls for only three of the stations: for North Miami, El Portal and the Design District.

None of those would have service to the Wynwood or Midtown areas.

 “It doesn’t make any sense,” Garcia said. “We have the largest amount of people living and working in this community than anywhere between downtown and Aventura and are projected to have more residents.”

 “The population is big and it’s growing and the design district is never going to catch up with this,” said Andres Althabe, president of the Biscayne Bay Neighborhood Association. “It’s hard to determine what was the methodology that they used to decide that because everything…all the numbers that we are looking at point to 27th Street and not to 41st Street.”

NBC 6 reached out to the county’s Transportation Planning Organization for comment and was referred to the Dade Transportation Department, but no response was given.

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