Jim Murley, Executive Director, South Florida Regional Council
Regional rail passenger attention is now on whether Tri Rail can gain the necessary funding to ensure that the All Aboard Florida station in downtown Miami will be designed and built to accommodate future commuter rail service. Key regional partners, including Florida Department of Transportation, Southeast Overtown CRA, Miami-Dade County, City of Miami, Tri Rail and All Aboard Florida, must conclude some difficult discussions in a relatively short time. If they are successful, regional commuter options will receive a big boost.
Looking ahead: Where will the sand come for long-term maintenance of Southeast Florida’s beaches? These fragile shoreline features are key to our global tourist economy, they provide important habitat for marine species and they protect our barrier islands and the mainland from future storms and rising seas. Sand is a diminishing commodity. Offshore supply is difficult to access. Inland sources are being mined and trucked to the coast. Beach managers are looking at international supplies in the Bahamas. Creative, regional intergovernmental solutions will be needed to have a sustainable, resilient sandy coastline.