The Results Are In
Now we learn that the mayors of The Town of Cutler Bay and Homestead are asking for a redo from the Turnpike. This article in the Community Newspapers highlights the outreach failures of the FTE (Florida Turnpike Enterprise).
(Click the image below to read the full article)
Why is the Florida Turnpike Enterprise continuing on their crusade to provide as little information as possible? Do they have something to hide? Are they worried that if the public actually knew the truth about their plans to add Express Lanes aka Lexus Lanes from Homestead to the 836 that the public would wake up and demand general purpose lanes instead of or in addition to Express Lanes?
Communication Breakdown Continues
In fact no mention of the Turnpike Widening Project was included in their latest electronic newsletter blasted out to SunPass users in December. You would think that such a huge project both in its scope and financial implication would merit a mention to the people who will be paying for it and using it. But no. Not a peep. Radio silence continues to be the order of the day at the Florida Turnpike Enterprise.
Their use of Newspaper ads buried deep in the most obscure sections does not justify adequate communication by today’s standards. The Turnpike cannot continue to hide behind 1970’s public outreach techniques anymore.
At the Turnpike public meeting held in Homestead on December 11th, many questions were asked of the turnpike officials. “Where are the demographic studies justifying South Dade residents and commuters will be able to afford the new proposed Express Lanes?”, “Why can’t the transcripts of the meetings be put on line?”, “Why wasn’t the Sun Pass email data base used to inform people of the meetings?” But little to no answers were given.
The emperor has no clothes – We need transit
The very idea of expanding a highway to add express toll lanes screams; “WE NEED TRANSIT”. Is this the only idea that our “transportation” agencies and officials can come up with? We have heard that Rapid Bus Transit (RBT) would be used on the Express Lanes. That’s a start. But where are the plans for the access to the RBT component? We did not see details on this.
We know that transit will cost a lot of money. We get it. But, these toll roads are already costing us an arm and a leg. And what we end up with in the long run is more urban sprawl, traffic congestion, lower quality of life, pollution, accidents and noise.
I know we can do better.