Metrorail in Miami

Metrorail in Miami
Metrorail is a heavy rail rapid transit system comprising a single 22.4 mile line, known as the Green Line, with 22 stations.
Starting in Hialeah, it travels generally southeast to the CBD and Brickell, then travels generally southwest to Kendall. It has been in operation since 1984. In the 1970s, there was a plan to fund several more highways in South Florida, but it was decided by the people that a mass transit option was more desirable. It was intended that the existing line would only be the beginning, hence many more were planned. However, due to budget shortfalls and less than anticipated ridership, none other than the 2.4 mile AirportLink have been realized. When completed in 2012, it will connect to Metrorail's 23rd station at Miami Central Station.

The current standard fare on Metrorail is $2 and reduced fare is $1. A standard monthly pass costs $100 and $50 for reduced fare. The monthly EASY Cards are sold at over 50 sales outlets. Reduced fares are available only to Medicare recipients, people with disabilities, and Miami-Dade students in grades 1-12. Ticket Vending Machines (TVMs) that sell EASY Cards and EASY Tickets are found in all rail stations. All Miami-Dade senior citizens aged 65 years and older and with Social Security benefits, and Veterans residing in Miami-Dade and earning less than $22,000 annually ride free with the reduced fare monthly EASY Card.

On July 16, 2008, Miami-Dade Transit announced that it would be replacing all fare collection methods with the EASY Card system by late 2009. The system replaces the old cash-/token-based system with one that automatically deducts fares at Metrorail fare gates from a reloadable card.  The final station to start fare gate installation was Government Center on August 2, 2009. Since the system launch on October 1, 2009, all passengers utilizing Metrorail must use either an EASY Card or EASY Ticket to enter stations.

Metrorail runs from 5 a.m. until midnight seven days a week. Trains arrive every 8 minutes during weekday rush hours, every 15 minutes at midday, and every 30 minutes after 7:30 p.m. until closing at midnight. Weekend service runs every 30 minutes until midnight. For a brief period from 2003 to April 2004 there was 24-hour service; between midnight and 5 a.m., trains arrived every 60 minutes. 16 of the 22 stations have dedicated parking facilities, either a garage or a surface lot, with a charge of $4 a day. The stops that don't are Tri-Rail and the five "downtown" stations, Civic Center, Culmer, Historic Overton/Lyric Theater, Government Center, and Brickell. However, there are multiple parking garages available around these stops.

A limited-stop bus route, Route 500 Midnight Owl, operates hourly between 12:30 a.m. and 5:30 a.m. trip between Dadeland South and Government Center Metrorail stations. This bus service replaces the 24-hour Metrorail service cancelled due to a lack of ridership.

Construction on the first segment of the Orange Line, Metrorail's AirportLink began in June 2009; service to Miami International Airport is scheduled to begin in spring 2012.

The Miami-Dade County Government is working with the Citizens Independent Transportation Trust to receive money from the half-penny sur-tax approved by voters in 2002 in order to purchase new Metrorail cars.

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