Local bicyclists will ride the length of the M-Path on Jan. 14 to cross the new bridge over the Snapper Creek Expressway and celebrate the near-completion of the M-Path Extension. The 12-mile ride will start at Metrorail’s Brickell Station that Saturday at 10 a.m., continuing through Miami, Coral Gables, and South Miami to cross the bridge alongside U.S. 1 below SW 67th Avenue, then on to Continental Park, 10000 SW 82nd Ave.
“Including three cities and a county park in this ride is symbolic of how the M-Path ties our community together,” said Dario Gonzalez of Emerge Miami, one of three groups putting the ride together. The M-Path Extension officially opens sometime in February. That will mark the closure of the Dadeland Gap, the 1.2-mile section that was left out of the M-Path when it was built along with the Metrorail guideway on the former route of the Florida East Coast Railway. “The M-Path is a priceless asset for active, healthy living,” said John Hopkins, executive director of Green Mobility Network, which has made M-Path improvement a key goal of its advocacy program for the past four years. “We are thrilled to see it completed.”
At the Dadeland South Station, the path connects with the South Dade Trail – and from there you can ride beside the Busway all the way to Florida City. They combine to make a 31-mile, offroad route all the way to downtown Miami. Think what that means for walkers, joggers, and cyclists in omestead, in Goulds, in Pinecrest and so on, right up to the Miami River. “May the Snapper expressway bridge show that locally and statewide, we aggresively pursue and improve all types of green mobility which promote walking, biking, and transit,” said Maricé Chael, an architect and co-founder of Bike SoMi.

M-Path FAQs

The M-Path was built 28 years ago as a service road for the Miami Metrorail, the elevated commuter railroad between Dadeland and downtown Miami’s Brickell financial district. Joggers, cyclists and everyday strollers soon adopted it. Today it’s a popular commuter path for cyclists in Coral Gables and points south who enjoy breezing past the rush-hour drivers on South Dixie Highway. While Miami-Dade Transit owns the M-Path, the M-Path Extension was constructed under a contract managed by the Florida Department of Transportation. The project includes new pathway at each end and north of North Kendall Drive, seven signalized crossings, and the 200-foot bridge across the mouth of the Snapper Creek Expressway. There’s also an attractive stretch along the C-2 canal at the Dadeland North Station.
Surveyors started driving stakes to outline the new path in January 2011. The budgeted cost was $4.5 million. Initial financing came through Florida’s share of federal Transportation Enhancement funding, augmented by stimulus money after planners decided that adding a bridge to the initial plan would make for safer travel.  The work was carried out in a design-build partnership of C3TS, of Coral Gables, and Community Asphalt, of Hialeah. The steel-truss bridge was fabricated in Alabama and erected by Anzac Contractors, of Miami. For an FDOT fact sheet, visit http://www.fdotmiamidade.com/current-projects/south-miami-dade/m-path-extension-bicycle-andpedestrian-trail-.html  The county’s M-Path Master Plan outlines a series of safety enhancements to include lighting, signed and signalized crossings, and some path realignment. Plans for the first of those are underway.

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13 Responses to Cyclists to celebrate closing M-Path’s Dadeland Gap

  1. Daniel says:

    Before you guys were complaining about the m path. Technically there’s another gap where it crosses coral way, which is impossible to cross sometimes and no doubt why they put the end m path sign there.

       1 likes

  2. Daniel says:

    Coral Way would be a good place for a pedestrian bridge as well, not just for the M-Path but for Publix shoppers etc. in Brickell since it is hard to cross Coral Way (13 Street) even at the intersection due to constant right turners from SW 1st Ave onto Coral Way, speaking of which that very avenue makes it hard to get to the other Publix at Mary Brickell Village.

       0 likes

  3. B says:

    A great improvement for cycling in Miami, which I hope will not be the last. I just wish the bridge went over ALL of the crossings where the Snapper Creek meets US1. A large part of it just south of the bridge (the majority of the span?) is still a crosswalk!

    All the Coral Way intersection crossing needs is “no turn on red” and a signaled crosswalk which stops all traffic for like 10 seconds when activated, problem solved. And most of the other crosswalk crossings along M-Path could benefit from “no turn on red” policies. People turning right don’t usually think to look for cyclists going at 10-20 mph on a crosswalk, and the angles make it hard enough to watch for that elusive break in the cross traffic.

       3 likes

  4. Megan McLaughlin says:

    If anything deserves a party it is the M Path! Great idea!

    I recently began commuting by bike on the M Path each day, an 8-mile commute from the Gables to Downtown. What I cannot understand as I breeze by drivers stuck in traffic is why more people aren’t commuting on the M-Path. It just makes sense – money, time, health, environment… It is an amazing resource for our area. I am so grateful to have a (relatively) safe route to work every morning – without it I would probably be too scared to ride my bike to work on the busier city streets.

       4 likes

  5. Matthew Toro says:

    You’re right, Daniel. Multiple gaps still remain. Many accessibility, connectivity, safety, and overall design flaws remain the M-Path’s present form.

    However, it’s undeniably getting better, much better. This celebration — of the closing of the Dadeland gap; of the foot/bike bridge at the Snapper Creek on-ramp; of the increased width, improved signage, and two-lane striping in the new southern sections; of its new course adjacent to the C2 canal at the Dadeland North Metrorail parking garage — is intended to highlight how this valuable this multi-use path is for our community.

    This event is intended to demonstrate to planners, designers, and policy-makers that we, the people, emphatically support the on-going improvement of this, our absolute best, urban path!

    It truly is worth celebrating. Tell everyone you know! Tell your husbands and wives; tell your aunts and uncles; tell your grandma and grandpa: We love the M-Path! We want more of the (and a better) M-Path!

       1 likes

  6. Megan says:

    Megan, unfortunately most people living in this country only see cars as transportation and can’t imagine getting around any other way, even if I’m the past they were used to doing it another way. I’m in that situation with my parents – they are very hostile towards me just because I use my bike for transportation – sometimes they get so angry, it’s as if I told them I was gay or something – and they have absolutely no experience in bike commuting. But they’re the kind of people that get in their cars just to drop a letter off in the mailbox down the street. I’ve managed to get them to stop driving my sister to school and let her ride her bike, since it’s only a 10 minute ride, but that’s about as much as they’ll budge. I don’t care what anyone says – I will continue to ride, because it’s done wonders for me already, and it’s fun.

       2 likes

  7. Brandt says:

    In that last comment, I put Megan as my name by accident. Big woops.

       1 likes

  8. Daniel says:

    Miami to participate in the annual no pants subway ride this year

    https://www.facebook.com/events/324123987607474/

       1 likes

  9. I agree with B. Why the hell did they not build it all the way over to the Dadeland Station side?! It would have been more convenient and much safer than to have to cross, all be it on a crosswalk, in front of the exiting car traffic from the Snapper Creek Expressway. It’s a half ass effort. Very convenient for the homeless pan handlers though.

       1 likes

  10. Daniel says:

    I hope you guys know that the sidewalk in the bridge is not complete, there are entire squares missing. Also, the entrance is blocked.

       0 likes

  11. Gables says:

    Brandt, did you really have to say, “they get so angry, it’s as if I told them I was gay or something”? I think you could have replaced “gay” with something else. Just as using the words, “Black, Jewish, disabled, or Mexican” in that sentence might be offensive to others, so is the word gay. Thief, for example, might have been better. You imply that being gay is something to be angry about, and it isn’t. No hurt feelings here. I just wanted to bring that up so that we can be sensitive to all readers.

       0 likes

  12. Brandt says:

    I was only comparing anger levels, because telling my parents that I’m gay (as an example) would bring out almost the same anger level. Replacing it with black or Jewish would not have the same meaning, because people don’t reveal to their parents that they are black or Jewish. I wasn’t implying anything about gay people. I understand your point though, and I could have said that another way.

       0 likes

  13. Matthew Toro says:

    Hi Daniel,

    As of last week, Friday, January 5th, the plywood barricade blocking access to the new C2 canal section of the M-Path has been removed; it’s accessible now.

    You’re right, though, the large new multi-use bridge towering over the Snapper Creek expressway is not yet officially open (there are still cones and signs indicating that people may/should not yet use it).

    Some people/groups are making effort to have that Snapper Creek bridge opened prior to Jan. 14.

    Let’s have our fingers crossed!

       0 likes

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