The fates haven't been kind to Miami this November. Despite the fact that our multicultural, immigrant-heavy city roundly rejected Donald Trump at the polls last Tuesday, we're stuck with him.
But we have some extra awful news: Construction on the Venetian Causeway begins Monday. The causeway's easternmost bridge, which links Belle Isle and Rivo Alto Island, will close to cars, bikes, and pedestrians for the next 45 days.
That rumbling you now feel in the ground isn't an earthquake; it's the entirety of Miami stomping its feet in a toddler-like temper-tantrum. Traffic absolutely sucks when the Venetian is closed.
With one of Miami's main arteries across the bay shut down, cars back up on Biscayne Boulevard and gum up the intersections near the Julia Tuttle and Macarthur Causeways like diseased aortas. The other two causeways will back up worse than normal during rush hour every day.
According to Miami Beach city documents, City of Miami Police will respond to 911 calls for anyone living along the causeway during that time.
But there's good news if you're a Russian diamond-mine magnate sailing into Miami Beach for Art Basel: The bridge will reopen in time for Miami's annual ejaculation of luxury art-market cash.
With an orgy of global wealth come some infrastructure upgrades too: During Basel, the City of Miami Beach has announced it will again run free shuttles between major landmarks on the mainland and the Beach.
According to a memo from Miami Beach City Manager Jimmy Morales, the city, as well as Miami-Dade County's Department of Transit and Public Works, will offer three free shuttles when Basel hits: One will cross the Tuttle between midtown Miami and the Miami Beach Convention Center; a second will loop through "art fairs located in the vicinity of Ocean Drive/10 Street, Convention Center, Collins Park, and Collins Avenue/46 Street"; and a third will connect people at the Convention Center to a parking facility at Haulover Park.
The shuttles will run November 30 through December 4 from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. except Sunday, when the buses will stop rolling at 8 p.m.
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And when Miami's wealthiest group of annual tourists leaves town, so too will the city's yearly glimpse of a useful public-transit system. In the meantime, enjoy gridlock, everybody.
Here's a city memo about the bridge closure: