Join us to participate in the upcoming 2019 City:One Challenge. 

Making the Miami traffic more fluid.

A combination of solutions for problems that are currently facing the traffic on Miami. Funnel effect, school hours, and constructions

Photo of Adrian Suárez del Villar Pomarez
1 1

Written by

A resolvable problem

Miami, a relatively young city, has a big problem that affects its entire population. The traffic is something that every day the most of the people have to confront, increasing the levels of stress in the population and the excessive consumption of gasoline. Endless constructions, pick-ups of the children from schools, and the funnel paths make the peak time a pure hell of despair, where the hours pass and only a few miles are advanced on the road. But each of these secondary problems has a potential solution, which if applied, can make traffic flow at a normal pace. Do you believe it? Do not! Let’s look at the following.

Endless constructions on the roads, a typical view of a growing city, forced to close one or more trails that bringing as a consequence a serious slowdown in traffic. This would seem to be inevitable since the constructions are essential, but here are two possible solutions for these cases and both of them are related to the night shift. The first of the solutions are linked to those roads that are in conditions to be traveled, either because they had to be broken to make some addition or because they are new unterminated paths but already with enough conditions for their use. In most of these cases, these works are carried out between the hours of the greatest traffic in the city of Miami, which is why the solution is simple. (Luna, 2014) If these works are carried out during the night, between the hours of 10 pm and 6 am, and after 6 am, the roads are covered with the adequate materials that make the areas in question, as it is done on many occasions using large metal sheets, it would help to make a little more fluid transit during the day. The second of these solutions have to do with those roads which cannot simply be covered momentarily for traffic to flow over it. The problem that these cases present is that the long time they take to be completed, clogging the circulation in many areas adjacent to them. (Schneider, 2015) Maybe the big question is: How to stifle time? The solution is obvious, working 24 hours a day, with three teams of 8 hours each will help to reduce by more than two thirds the time of completion of each work. In this way, it would not miss the 30 minutes at the beginning of each day dedicated to restoring the work area, neither the 30 minutes allocated to the collection of the tools and materials since it will be worked in a row with three different groups of workers (HEARD, 2015)

Long rows of cars belonging to relatives who intend to pick up children from schools and chains of school buses carrying groups of students make school hour a high peak in traffic on Miami. The problem is that most of the schools in the area have their main entrances facing the busiest avenues and streets. To all this is added the fact that yellow flashing lights, used to intentionally disarm the speed of cars that enter the school zone, slow down the flow of traffic. Solution! Most of the schools have large areas in disuse in backyards. If those areas were used to create collection places specifically for school buses, they would no longer have to be stacked in the middle of a road. As a complement to this measure, it should be established that children can only leave and enter schools on school buses. This will definitely be of great help in many aspects. For example, family members will not be able to pick up the children, preventing their cars from stopping those people passing through those roads near the schools. The school zone indicator lights will not be necessary anymore since will be no children walking on the sidewalks around the schools. The number of accidents will decrease, in many of which children who leave or enter schools by their own feet are involved. And of course, the traffic will feel its effect as many of the peak hours will disappear. (Vigne, 2007)

 The funnel effect, in terms of traffic, means roads with a large number of lanes which begin to reduce, forcing a large number of cars, which were previously distributed in several lanes, to pass through an area with much fewer lanes. This results in a slowing down of the traffic and the accumulation of many cars which little by little fill all the roads before the narrowing. (Business Standard, 2014) Miami, the city of the sun, is not exempt from this evil. Positioned in the tenth place in the world among the cities that have the worst traffic, the streets of Miami feel like a dextrose serum where its content moves from drop to drop. This undesired effect can be found both, over of highways and below them. A possible solution to this headache can be given by the construction of extra paths in the points where the diameter is smaller and not in those places that are before reaching these red areas. For example, the trails that go along the 836 highway west direction, at the height of the 77th avenue, are 8, but it starts to merge until it is only 3 lines after the exit in Le June. Something similar happens within the city, where there are only a few streets that are able to cross both the Turnpike and the Palmetto. Just to mention one area of the city, let's take as an example the quadrant between the Flagler and MDC Kendall Campus, where we can find more than 100 streets, in this region and only cross the Turnpike 8 streets, creating a funnel effect through the rest of the streets intermediate. The solution to these issues has to be the construction of tunnels or bridges, according to the terrain permits, in some streets such as 16th, 32nd, 46th, 68th, 82nd among others; it does not necessarily have to be an entrance or an exit to the Turnpike: it can only cross it like Coral Way does. (CBS Miami, 2018)

 In my very personal opinion, the traffic condition in Miami is a problem that affects the entire population; that is why it is necessary that the city government takes action on the matter as soon as possible. Making law the work hours on the roads, building pick-up points inside schools, and not allowing children to enter and leave schools in other ways than school buses, traffic can improve a lot. And if to all that we add a few extra routes that cross the main highways, surely we can lower the numbers of peak hours of traffic.

Describe your solution's stage of development

  • Initial Design - you are still exploring the idea and have not tested it with users

Size of your team or organization

  • I am submitting as an individual

Funding Request

  • $100,000

Attachments (1)

1 comment

Join the conversation:

Photo of Wilda Previl

Hi Adrian Suárez del Villar Pomarez 

My name is Wilda. I am one of your local community facilitators. :) Thanks so much for sharing your ideas with us on the platform. It's so exciting to see residents get involved, engage and create solutions for our very real traffic troubles here in Miami. So I've got a few thoughts on our submission.

construction: assuming the solutions proposed work in EVERY case, the problem with traffic is less about the obstructions and more about the human navigating the area. What this means is that the human, the uncontrolled variable, has to be able to get through the traffic with little assistance. Assuming these humans have the best driving abilities, they must also navigate the area, now filled with obstacles such as barricades, metal sheets over holes (making them feel unsafe), working faster may not always fix the solution.

schools: if ALL children, as is proposed in your submission, are ONLY to be picked up by school bus, how do children who only live a few blocks away get to and from school? Also something to consider: school zones isn't just limited to school grounds, it also extends into several blocks in all directions leading up to the schools. People drive through school zones to get to work. Do we divert those commuters?

By the way, the PROPOSE phase is where things get really exciting as we refine our ideas. Don't forget to upload a photo of yourself so we can have a good tab of all the awesome ideas being submitted. :)