Miamians Could Be Stuck Footing The Bill For South Florida's Massive $770M Monorail
About $60 million per year in payments.
A $770 million monorail connecting Miami and Miami Beach may be on the way, and the money would come out of the public's pocket. Genting, a resort company, is proposing to lend Miami the funding for the massive project. The Miami Beach Monorail could potentially cost the public about $60 million a year for 30 years if built.
“We don’t have a lot of money to spread around,” Commissioner Joe Martinez said in Tuesday's commissioner's meeting. “Of course, it takes away from other corridors. Any corridor that comes first takes money away from the other ones.”
The proposed rail would be four miles long and take riders from mainland Miami to South Beach in mere minutes over the MacArthur Causeway at $5 a ticket.
Genting's proposal is the only official bid for the monorail so far. Commissioners voted to further evaluate the submitted plan. If approved, the system "would be the first new train line under the county’s 2016 effort known as the SMART Plan," according to the Miami Herald.
Genting and associates would advance the $770 million needed to carry out the project. If approved as-is, the county would make yearly payments of $59.4 million over the next 30 years for the project.
Officials are hoping the hefty price tag for the monorail will decrease before the project is underway. Recently, the county has approved "a rapid-transit bus system for South Dade and an Aventura station for the existing Brightline rail network," the Miami Herald reported.
This pricey plan is not guaranteed at this time since Genting's bid could be rejected after further review. Regardless of negotiations, the county is likely to spend millions in order to get a quicker commute for its citizens.