Planners Reveal The Pricetag On Light Rail From Miami To The Beach

Apr 3, 2014

The city of Miami's Metromover system shuttles riders around the downtown and Brickell areas. County Commissioner Bruno Barreiro is advocating for extending the Metromover over the MacArthur rather than building a new light-rail system.
Credit Enmanuel/Flickr

The numbers are in. The estimated cost of building a light rail line from mainland Miami to the beach is $532 million. And three key players are lining up in support of the proposal.

The mayors of Miami-Dade County, the city of Miami and the city of Miami Beach are backing the proposal to build a light rail line along the MacArthur Causeway.

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez has said previously that if traffic between Miami and Miami Beach gets worse it will kill the tourism industry.

RELATED: How Miami-Dade's Dreams Of Light Rail Look A Lot Like Its Past

In the early 1900s a trolley system ran between the mainland and the beach. The idea of reconnecting the two cities via rail has been around for a while and was almost realized in 2004 as the Baylink project. 

During a meeting Wednesday, the three mayors agreed to partner in the hunt to find funding for the next stage of the project: a development study.  But, significant challenges lie ahead like finding the money to build and operate the system, which is expected to cost $22 million a year to run. 

Read more from The Miami Herald