South Dade Commuters

Perhaps the most unbearable commute in Dade County is the one from South Dade north into Downtown to I-95. This is because the southern suburbs are home to thousands of downtown workers who have few options other than inching their ways up US-1, which has all the stop and go infuriation of a jam-packed expressway with the added bonus of a stoplight every quarter mile. A 20-minute drive without traffic can take up to an hour and a half during particularly hairy rush hours.

But fret not, South Dade commuters! You too can give the proverbial finger to US-1 as you cruise along the Metrorail's elevated tracks on your way to your Downtown office. The Dadeland South station is located just north of Kendall Drive on US-1 and offers parking for those who wish to leave their cars and take the train north. This is an excelent option for those living in Kendall or West Kendall who only want to have to fight traffic getting to the station.

Those who live south of the southern terminus of the Metrorail have the added bonus of using perhaps the greatest advent in the history of Dade County public transit: The South Dade Busway. The Busway runs from Dadeland South to Florida City, the gateway to the Florida Keys. It is a spectial lane just for county busses which features no traffic and only the occasional stoplight. It is essentially a Metrorail without the train or tracks, a higher-speed alternative to using a passenger car. So if, for instance, you live in the southern suburb of Palmetto bay, and do not want to spend half your life sitting on US-1, you can easily drive to one of the many Park and Rides along the busway, hop on an express bus to Dadeland South, and be at work in about half an hour.

And is there a greater feeling in the world than sitting in a moving vehicle staring at unmoving traffic? No, I don't believe there is.

 

Tourists

If you do want to see the City of Miami and not just South Beach, only about half the system is going to be useful for you. If you are a tourist staying downtown, you cannot take the Metrorail, or even a decent bus really, from the airport.

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How to Pay

If you come from one of those cities with a mass-transit system which utilizes such forward-thinking concepts as "farecards" or "bill accepters," you will be in for a major shock when you get to Miami. Because unless you have a monthly pass, you'd better be packing close to your body weight in change.

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