Downtown Miami master plan could include shuttle buses, streetcars
By Deserae del Campo
As residential and commercial development grows downtown, Miami's Downtown Development Authority is crafting a master plan to enhance economic growth, improve transportation and urban design and make downtown pedestrian-friendly.
The authority began the planning last June in order to strengthen the city's core. A final plan is expected this summer.
The plan may include shuttle buses and streetcars to put more pedestrians and fewer cars on downtown streets, said Adam Lukin, authority manager of land use and transportation.
"The Miami Downtown Development Authority is identifying ways to improve the pedestrian movement downtown," Mr. Lukin said, "which includes reprioritizing roadways, widening sidewalks, providing better crosswalks, improving pedestrian traffic signalization and incorporating more attractive streetscapes."
The plan is focused on establishing a 24-hour mixed use community, encouraging pedestrian activity, integrating public transportation with residential and commercial development, increasing public space and access to the waterfront along with developing urban design recommendations that celebrate downtown's history and development.
"As urban tourism has become a central focus of the master plan, the Miami Downtown Development Authority will explore forms and venues that contribute to meaningful experiences for residents, workers and visitors," said Davon Barbour, authority manager of economic development.
The authority is also creating an economic and marketing strategy for the plan.
"The office and hotel markets represent significant growth markets for downtown Miami," Mr. Barbour said. "Through the update of the downtown master plan, the development authority hopes to answer two critical questions: What is downtown's strategic role over the next ten years? And, how can we broaden the beneficial impacts of tourism and visitation?"