A new exhibit at the Coral Gables Museum is now on view, providing a deeper look into “Plan Z for Miami,” a proposal to create a snaking elevated platform that would provide pedestrians and cyclists with safer passage from Miami to nearby Virginia Key and Key Biscayne.
The existing Rickenbacker Causeway has seen four fatal cycling accidents since 2006, spurring many cyclists to push for better bike lanes and barriers to protect them from the high-speed traffic on the bridge. Architect, urban planner, and lifelong cyclist Bernard Zyscovich saw an opportunity to promote cycling as a more viable means of transportation in Miami and launched Plan Z for Miami.
The nonprofit organization has proposed two separate plans to convert Rickenbacker Causeway, the first of which involves the removal of a lane of traffic from the causeway to create a 16-foot-wide bike and pedestrian lane, separated from the motor traffic by a strip of native foliage.
After concerns were raised about the removal of a lane of traffic, Zyscovich returned with Plan Z 2.0. This bolder plan proposes a completely separate bike and pedestrian lane to run the length of the causeway and connect to the proposed Underline, a ten-mile linear park running under Miami’s Metrorail.
The path would then run along the William Powell Bridge, providing an observation deck for viewing the Miami skyline, then continue on to Virginia Key. Zyscovich’s plan also imagines a 20-acre waterfront park and beach at the entrance of Virginia Key, with a branch of paths connecting to Virginia Key Park, before continuing on to Key Biscayne.
The project has already garnered a decent amount of positive attention from the community, according to the architect, and they will continue to show the plans to the public to rally further support while the project is in review for potential funding.
The exhibit, titled Plan Z for Miami: From Infrastructure to Open Space, will be on view through May 14, 2017, at the Coral Gables Museum. For more information about the exhibit, visit the Museum’s website here.
For more information about the Plan Z project itself, you can visit the organization’s website here.