This past Tuesday, the county presented its 90% completion for the proposed 27th Avenue makeover project. There has been little deviation from the 30% rendering, which calls for the following improvements:

  • Addition of bike lanes
  • Addition of on-street parking
  • Removal of most private, on-site parking
  • Addition of tree-planted median (and more shade trees for sidewalks)
  • Addition of oval-shaped traffic circle at the intersection of Day, Tigertail, and 27th

While earlier renderings more often centered around parking controversy, the newest lightning rod is the traffic circle. Several citizens and business owners still don’t believe the traffic circle will work.

”You have to remember people don’t like change, and this is something that’s foreign to them,” – Delfin Molins, a spokesman for the Miami-Dade County Public Works Department.

It’s true – many Groveites are terrified of change. However, I’d be surprised if most are not fully supporting this project by the time the final draft is unveiled. I really think this project is quite progressive for Miami/South Florida standards in the way it focuses more on improving the pedestrian realm than making the street a traffic sewer.

As for the concern about the traffic circle, I’m pretty confident it will be beneficial to Center Grove residents and visitors alike. As long as it’s engineered by the specs public works has planned, it should do a pretty good job mitigating congestion on 27th and Tigertail while not compromising easy pedestrian crossings. The shape and design of this “circle” should ensure that cars cannot speed through it. People shouldn’t worry about it becoming a wild “free-for-all”, because it is not designed to be a large rotary similar to the Cocoplum Circle at Le Jeune and Sunset in Coral Gables. Miami drives can be dumb…and crazy, but even they can handle a traffic circle this simple. Plus, Day Ave should not experience an appreciable increase in thru-traffic as long as it changes to one-way eastbound.

My biggest disappointment with this project, however, is that the intersection of 27th Ave and US-1 is being ignored. The sidewalk and bike lane improvements are great, but this intersection is one of the most hostile in all of Miami for pedestrians and cyclists. Without design upgrades to improve safety and aesthetics at this intersection, the Grove Metrorail station remains effectively alienated from the wonderful 27th Avenue improvements. It’s a classic example of Miami’s seemingly inextricable fragmentation – especially when it comes to transit and land-use planning.

One Response to 27th Avenue Makeover Plan 90% Complete

  1. C.L. Jahn says:

    COCONUT GROVE GRAPEVINE has been collecting comments on the design; most seem to be favorable to the circle.

    (I erroneously attributed your article to CriticalMiami in a comment I posted there – my apologies for my error)

       0 likes

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