The Venetian Causeway, a popular route for bicyclists and pedestrians that connects Miami to Miami Beach, will be closed for repairs starting in December 2023. This news has caused concern among bicyclists who rely on the Causeway to commute and exercise. The closure is expected to last for six months, and alternate routes will be available during this time. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind the closure and the impact it will have on the bicycling community in the area.
Reasons for the Closure
The Venetian Causeway was last closed for repairs in 2017, when the bridge was refurbished and repainted. The causeway has been in use for more than 90 years and is showing signs of wear and tear. The repairs are needed to ensure the safety and stability of the causeway for years to come.
The closure is part of a larger infrastructure improvement plan for the Venetian Causeway. The project will involve repairing the bridge decks, replacing the drainage system, and improving the seawalls. The project is expected to cost around $47 million and will be funded by the Florida Department of Transportation.
Impact on Bicyclists
The Venetian Causeway is a popular route for bicyclists, with an estimated 1,500 to 2,000 cyclists using the causeway each day. The closure will force bicyclists to find alternate routes, which can be challenging in a city with limited bike infrastructure. Bicyclists will have to share the road with cars on alternate routes, which can be dangerous and intimidating for some.
The closure will also have an impact on the local economy. Many businesses in Miami and Miami Beach rely on bicyclists for business, and the closure will make it harder for cyclists to visit these businesses. Additionally, the closure may discourage tourists from visiting the area, as the Venetian Causeway is a popular attraction.
During the closure, bicyclists will have to use alternate routes to cross the water between Miami and Miami Beach. The MacArthur Causeway and Julia Tuttle Causeway are both viable alternatives, but they are less convenient for bicyclists than the Venetian Causeway. The MacArthur Causeway has a bike lane, but it is narrow and can be dangerous. The Julia Tuttle Causeway has no bike lane, and bicyclists will have to share the road with cars.
Safety Tips for Bicyclists
For bicyclists who will be using alternate routes during the closure, it is important to follow safety tips to avoid accidents. Bicyclists should always wear a helmet and brightly colored clothing to increase visibility. Bicyclists should also obey traffic laws and signals and stay in designated bike lanes or on the far right side of the road. Bicyclists should also be aware of their surroundings and avoid distractions like headphones or cell phones.
The closure of the Venetian Causeway will have a significant impact on the bicycling community in Miami and Miami Beach. Bicyclists will have to find alternate routes, which can be dangerous and inconvenient. The closure will also have an economic impact on local businesses and tourism. However, the repairs are necessary to ensure the safety and stability of the causeway for years to come. Bicyclists should follow safety tips when using alternate routes and be patient during the closure.
- When will the Venetian Causeway be closed?
- The closure is expected to start in December 2023 and last for six months.
- Why is the Venetian Causeway being closed?
- The closure is part of a larger infrastructure improvement plan for the Venetian Causeway, which includes repairing the bridge decks, replacing the drainage system, and improving the seawalls.
- How will the closure impact bicyclists?
- The closure will force bicyclists to find alternate routes, which can be challenging and less convenient. It may also impact local businesses and tourism in the area.
- What are some safety tips for bicyclists using alternate routes?
- Bicyclists should wear helmets and brightly colored clothing, obey traffic laws, and stay in designated bike lanes or on the far right side of the road. Avoid distractions like headphones or cell phones, and be aware of surroundings.
- How much will the project cost and who will fund it?
- The project is estimated to cost around $47 million and will be funded by the Florida Department of Transportation.
- Will pedestrians still be able to use the Venetian Causeway during the closure?
- Yes, pedestrians will still be able to use the Venetian Causeway during the closure as sidewalks will remain open.
- Are there any other alternate routes for bicyclists besides the MacArthur and Julia Tuttle Causeways?
- Bicyclists can also consider taking public transportation or using water taxis as alternate routes during the closure.