Firm Unveils Renderings of Bicycle-Friendly Light-Rail Cars for Miami Beach

Miami Beach is moving swiftly with plans to bring a light-rail system to the city, and now one of the three organizations bidding to build the project has released renderings of what that system might look like. On Facebook, Connect Miami Beach (a consortium of several companies) unveiled its ideas.  

Its vision includes sleek, modern cars that feature a mix of seating and standing room in the interior. The effect is sort of like a halfway point between Miami-Dade's Metrorail and Metromover, except updated for modern times and not the '80s. Interestingly, the cars are rendered in the traditional colors of Miami-Dade Transit, though the county department isn't directly involved in the project — not yet, anyway. "The URBOS design provides unfettered access to persons with varying levels of mobility, including elderly passengers, riders in wheelchairs or with bicycles, and parents with young children or baby strollers," Connect Miami Beach claims. 

And, yes, bikers got special considerations. 

"With the avid biking community in the city, this design allows for easy on and off for bicycles. The cars will also include bike racks for convenient storage," the group writes. 
The Next Miami adds that CAF of Spain will be in charge of the design and construction of the cars. CAF's previous American projects include D.C.'s Metro, the Kansas City Tram, and the Boston LRV. 

The proposal, as of right now, is just to build light-rail within Miami Beach. The longer-reaching proposal is to somehow connect Miami Beach to the mainland via light rail over Biscayne Bay. That system could become one seamless line, or passengers may end up having to transfer between rail systems. 

Connect Miami Beach is a project cobranding the construction and concessions company OHL, Spanish infrastructure project management company Globalvia, railway infrastructure company COMSA, construction company Community Asphalt, design and engineering firm Atkins, railcar manufacturer CAF, tech solutions company SENER, rail track construction company Railworks, and electrical system company L.K. Comstock. 

Greater Miami Tramlink Partners, led by French company Alstom Transportation, and Miami Beach Mobility Partners are also making bids to build the system. However, neither of those groups has released snazzy-looking renderings of railcars just yet. 
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Kyle Munzenrieder