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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Coconut Grove hotels need trolley service

I had a bunch of relatives in town a couple of weeks ago, they stayed at Grove Isle, which they loved, but it was a pain for all of them to constantly coordinate cars and cabs and ways to get in and out of the island. A trolley would have been perfect.

One night, a bunch of us hung out at the hotel, it cost us all an arm and a leg to park. If we had trolley service, we could have all parked at my house or something and grabbed the trolley to Grove Isle and each time we came and went from the hotel, we could take the trolley on and off the island, leaving the cars behind.

The arts festival just passed, traffic was a nightmare as usual. A lot of the car traffic would have been alleviated with a trolley service. Also, I do believe that many more people would have attended the festivals from Brickell, Wynwood and beyond if all they had t do was hop on the trolley.

We need trolley service in the Grove now. There's talk of Coral Gables extending their service to the Village West, which makes sense since they are using the neighborhood there as a trolley garage. But we need the City of Miami trolley to keep going past Mercy Hospital (currently their last stop) and we need the trolley to service the village, all the hotels and all residents. It's the right thing to do.

I see the trolley going in and out of Mercy Hospital's grounds daily. There is never anyone on the trolley, other than the driver. It's nice to know that people can get to the hospital from areas north of us via trolley, but if we needed to get to Mercy from the south, we don't have that luxury. Either way, it's usually empty.

I was told that trolley service through Coconut Grove would slow down the routes by eight minutes. So what, it's a free trolley service, I doubt riders are going to complain about a free service adding a few more minutes to the route. Cut out Mercy's stops and that eight minutes could easily be made up.

For linking to this one story, just click on the time it was posted & just this story will open for sharing - only through social media. Not copying and pasting.


Anonymous James W. said...

It is kind of ridiculous that the city has the audacity to tell one of its highest tax bases, "sorry, the other stops would have to wait a bit longer if we added you, and we can't have that". Not to get to conspiratorial, but are we sure that the lack of trolley service isn't just some misguided persons way of keeping "undesirables" out of the Grove? I don't feel this way, and want the trolley, but it's just a thought. The whole "extra time" argument seems to boneheaded, even for City of Miami government.

February 22, 2014 8:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think your on to something.
I've been giving a lot of thought to ways to make the Grove more vibrant/improve the central business district (CBD). From a customer point of view...
We have a decent mass public transportation system (Metro rail) but unfortunately (or maybe fortunately?) it stops about 10 blocks from the CBD. I challenge anyone to walk those blocks. Once you arrive to the shops you are drenched in sweat, and will eventually stink like a mule. Seems like there would be tremendous benefit in having a quick trolley going back and forth. It could loop down 27th Ave, up Bayshore, and back up 32nd Ave. Similarly, on any given weekend there are dozens if not hundreds of people enjoying Kennedy Park. These are all potential customers tot he CBD. They need food and drinks. I made the walk with 5 10 year olds last week, and it was not fun. Imagine a group finishing up a beach volleyball game saying "guys let's hop on the trolley and get a burger at the Sandbar". Also all the residents that live out of walking distance. Once they hop in a car they can just as easily go to the Gables or Brickell.

February 22, 2014 10:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about a third party trolley service something like a classy jitney.maybe the hotels can pay happens alot in orlando around the disney area to provide free shuttles to the parks.

February 22, 2014 11:51 AM  
Anonymous Sandi said...

You are right on and you and I have discussed this at length. Every time I see the City of Miami Trolley dropping people off down Coral Way at Miracle Mile to go shop and dine in the Gables I get so upset. The entire City is connected and with the Gables too except the Grove! We go to the Gables all the time and jump on the trolley but we have to drive there. If there was a connecting trolley people from the Gables may actually come to Grove as well. Sad situation .

February 22, 2014 5:13 PM  
Blogger Grapevine said...

The Trolley used to stop at 25th Road, at the end of Brickell, then turn back toward downtown, when I asked why it was extended to Mercy Hospital one day, I was told, "Oh, the Hospital NEEDS THE TROLLEY!" So the people north of us "NEED THE TROLLEY," to get to the hospital, but those who live south don't.

Excuses, excuses.

February 22, 2014 5:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What if they created something called the "circulator" that ran from the 27th ave metro rail stop through the gtove all the way to the 37th ave metro rail stop? You could paint it to look like a trolley and it would solve every gripe i've heard regarding the trolly. It literally connects you to the gables trolley and the metro rail that runs to the heart of the brickell shopping.

February 22, 2014 8:16 PM  
Blogger Grapevine said...

No offense, but I have stood outside my neighborhood in the North Grove for hours waiting, and the circulator does not come by at all. But if the trolley was extended like it should be, it would be perfect for all us North Grove neighbors. It would be a complete circle coming from Brickell, going down S. Bayshore and into the Center Grove and then back again.

February 22, 2014 8:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Totally agree with Tom's comments here.

Now why doesn't the City act on this obvious, much needed service, that would benefit Grove residents, visitors and spark general business alike, plus alleviate traffic/parking woes? Nonsense budget limitations or lack of juicy contracts to be had, or both?

February 23, 2014 2:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Grove hotels and Mercy should be on this ASAP. In Houston, there is a 16-hospital medical center district with transportation to hotels, shops and restaurants. They make it easy on patients and their families who flock to the area. It's called medical tourism and it's a major economic driver. People are here from all over the world. The Grove has every component in place...except for easy, public transportation. We are missing the boat.

February 23, 2014 9:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about a time capsule that takes the grove back 20 years ago when it was such a fun place to live and play :(

February 23, 2014 1:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I completely agree! I am coordinating to bring a large group of friends down for a reunion. I would love to book them in the Grove, but I am seriously thinking about picking another location/hotel that offers better public transportation around the entire city.

February 23, 2014 1:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Connecting with Brickell would be nice, but mostly I think it needs to pass through the Grove frequently. Once every hour is too long. Once every 30 minutes prob as well. Think about it? Imagine yourself waiting in this heat for 30 minutes...That's about when you say "screw this, I'm getting in my car (and going elsewhere)". And I think a must is a Metrorail strop. That way you connect the Grove to most of the county. For festivals like the art show it would be a whopping success. Also remember the Metrorail now even stops at the airport. A tourist could go from the airport all the way to their room at the Mayfair, etc.

February 23, 2014 1:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not interested, but the comments speak abstractly; i.e.,
lacking some degree of insight into the [fact] that the trolley service your comments refer to have an administrator/dep't, so get their agenda and/or boss and tell him/them what's on your collective minds, not the Grapevine!

February 23, 2014 6:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The administrator/dep't does not seem to have any interest or desire to hook up Coconut Grove to the trolly route.

February 23, 2014 7:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Folks, this is the U.S. of A and we [are] people with rule of law and the government that works for us. I'm not a lawyer or some other professional & have limited education, but have filed 12 lawsuits to make my point winning 11, & was very close to winning all twelve - - - - so quit aside from vetting herein, which is okay, do more, do something, do anything other that commenting using your fingertips on some keyboard; stand up face em and do more!

February 24, 2014 8:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While we're at it, we should also be pushing to get the city to allow alternative taxi services like Uber. It is criminal- quite possibly literally that the city won't approve this and so instead we are stuck with a 3rd world taxi system.

February 24, 2014 3:48 PM  
Blogger Brian Breslin said...

There is a $.25 bus #249 that runs from the 27th ave metro rail station down 27th, by fresh market, and up bayshore, then onto grand at mary, extends down grand up to 37th where it turns up to go to the other metro station on 37th. its slow, and really should be bi-directional. However, I would LOVE to see a CBD-metro trolley that also went to mercy hospital.

February 25, 2014 10:02 AM  

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