Hold the Line: Public Hearing for SR 836/Dolphin Expressway Extension 12.13.18

MDX will hold a public hearing for the SR 836/Dolphin Expressway Southwest Extension (Kendall Parkway) Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study. The public hearing is being conducted to give interested parties an opportunity to express their views concerning the location, conceptual design, and social, economic and environmental effects of the proposed project.  Your participation is critical to ensure the environmental concerns are put on the record.

Representatives from MDX’s project team will be available for any questions from 6:00 PM to 6:30 PM. The public hearing will start at 6:30 PM.

Overview: MDX is conducting a Project Development and Environment (PD&E) Study to evaluate the feasibility of a southwest extension of SR 836/Dolphin Expressway.

The Hold the Line Coalition opposes this project and does not belive it has sufficiently avoided and minimized impacts to wetlands and Everglades Restoration projects. The impacts to the Bird Drive Basin and adjacent wetlands are direct; these lands have been purchased and protected with State, Federal and local dollars for the purpose of conservation and resotration for the past 40 years. The benefits of restoration are clear and every acre in Dade County that has been protected must remain that way with the aim to offer flood control, improve water quality, protect and recharge our aquifer and to serve as a buffer to the Everglades from development.

We ask for your help with spreading the word about this public meeting as it has not been widely advertised. Please send out a group email, add this to your social media posts, send an e-blast and newsletter updates to your networks ASAP.  We need to get as many voices and points on the record as possible.

More information: MDXs agenda | MDXs calendar

**Residents wishing to submit a written statement, in place or in addition to oral statements, may do so at the hearing or by sending them to Mayra Diaz at MDX at 3790 NW 21 Street, Miami, FL 33142 or to tgarcia@ mdxway.com. Statements postmarked on or before December 26, 2018 will become part of the public record, these comments are due by December 26th, 2018.

PD&E Study formal presentation & public hearing: Thursday, December 13, 2018 at 6 P.M. |Archbishop Coleman F. Carroll High School| 10300 SW 167 Avenue (Gym) Miami, FL 33196

Talking Points on the extension of SR836

  • Increased urban sprawl on the county’s western periphery. The connection between road extension and sprawl is well understood by academics and city planners. MDX itself admits that this road will exert significant development pressure in the area. If you build it, they WILL come.
  • Endanger freshwater resources. The road itself stretches right over a large portion of our Western well-field, an area where​surface water and drinking water intermix most heavily, threatening to pollute and deplete the drinking water resources of the very residents this road is meant to serve.
  • Worsen Traffic. Scientific studies prove that more roads mean more traffic. “Induced demand,” will put more cars on the road.
  • Harm Important Everglades restoration projects. The Bird Drive Basin project, a component of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) is set to reduce seepage from Everglades National Park, recharge one of the county's largest sources of underground drinking water, and extend wetlands that serve as a buffer zone for Miami-Dade County. This proposed expansion would interfere with this crucial project.
  • Increase tolls. Residents who live west of I95 pay the most tolls in Miami-Dade County, paying more than anyone — even tourists — to get to the urban core, or the coast.
  • Flooding Risk. The lands in this area are highly low lying and flood prone abiding citizens at risk. Development of this region puts all of its potential new occupants at risk of flooding as well as potential health effects associated with living next to heavy mining operations and virtually guarantees impossibly long commutes for future residents.
  • Displacement of agricultural land harming agricultural economy. The development pressure this project would generate would displace thousands of acres of active farmland. County staff have projected that should our supply of farmland in active use fall below a minimum threshold of approximately 50,000 acres, the economies of scale which our agricultural economy relies upon could break down, destabilizing the industry. We are rapidly approaching this threshold.
  • Be Financially Irresponsible. Tolls have not yet paid for Florida highways. How is this different? There is no proposed plan, and no precedence of success in the state of Florida. How is this to be achieved?
  • It promotes Sprawl. Violating the UDB will encourage development on sensitive areas that preserve vital resources which the County needs for aquifer recharge, to protect our communities from flooding, and preserve our agricultural economy. The only way forward is to look for sustainable solutions with a plan to build our infrastructure based in smart growth in policies and investments that encourage infill development, walkability, and transit oriented development which could be achieved by implementing the Seven50 plan (org),which could be operated in conjunction with the SMART planto offer a better menu of transportation options with a chance to build a strong, competitive, environmentally responsible and resilient region.
  • Sets Precedent. Allowing this project to move ahead sets the precedent of going “just a little more” westward, and distracts from the implementation of SMART GROWTH Plan solutions.
  • Population pressure. With the numbers of residents moving to Miami-Dade County each year — and based on what we can sustain — westward expansion is not the answer. To say that there will be no more development around the road is a fallacy. Studies show that growth begets growth.
  • Place the Resilience of Miami-Dade County at risk. Wetlands serve as a natural buffer to natural disasters such as hurricanes and sea-level rise. Building more roads goes against science. SR836 extension proposal sits in direct conflict with everything the County should be doing to make us more resilient in the face of sea level rise. There’s an urgent need for infill development in high density areas near existing or planned transit corridors.
  • Need to reduce GHG emissions. Miami is 1 among the 100 Resilient cities platform pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation. Reducing emissions remains a top solution to tackle climate change. We have to identify with the risks and exposures and then we can figure out how to complement that. We can’t accomplish very much as a platform partner without a motivated city behind it.