In this undated image from the Florida Department of Transportation, the flyover exit ramp from Key Biscayne is seen. After a traffic meltdown April 14, officials have a new plan to close one off ramp at a time to I-95 and U.S. 1. The work is expected to start in July (KBI via FDOT)
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Hoping to avoid a repeat of a traffic apocalypse, new closures of the Key Biscayne exit flyover ramps will start July 8th, split into two phases. But even with revised traffic plans, motorists are being warned that delays are inevitable.

The Florida Department of Transportation set the dates Friday, part of critical repairs to the flyover that residents exiting the island use to get to U.S 1 and I-95. 

Officials are hoping that by separating the closures into two phases, traffic jams will be lessened. The closure effort April 14, which shut both northbound and southbound ramps, stranded thousands of motorists for up to seven hours.

Cars in a 7-mile traffic jam on the William Powell Bridge exiting Key Biscayne, Sunday April 14 2024 The jam came on the first day of two-month closure of the flyover ramp from Key Biscayne to I-95 and U.S. 1. (KBI Photo/Tony Winton)

The first phase will close the portion of the ramp from the Rickenbacker Causeway to U.S. 1 for 12 days, July 8 to July 20, according to FDOT. The closure starts at 1 a.m. on the 8th and is scheduled to end at 6 a.m. on the 20th.

U.S. 1 Flyover Closure – July 8 to July 20

In this graphic provided by FDOT, detours are shown for the planned closure of the U.S. flyover closure (KBI via FDOT)

The second I-95 flyover closure, lasting 13 days,  is expected to be more challenging, according to Village Manager Steve Williamson. He said Sunday that officials will pay close attention to how the first phase of the flyover closure works and make recommendations to FDOT. “We are in constant contact with FDOT and will discuss what is working and what is not.”

I-95 Flyover Closure – July 21 to Aug. 3

xIn this graphic provided by FDOT, detours are shown for the planned closure of the I-95 flyover closure (KBI via FDOT)

The ramp to northbound I-95 will be shuttered July 21 and will be closed until early morning Aug. 3. The I-95 ramp will close at 10 p.m. on the 21st and will reopen at 6 a.m. on the 3rd.“Detours will be clearly marked.

“Please follow all posted signage and note that this schedule may change due to weather or other unexpected conditions,” FDOT said in a news release. “Expect heavy traffic and delays along the Rickenbacker Causeway and surrounding areas.”

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In addition to the flyover closures, road work will continue at North Hobe Beach Park. The previous repair fiasco came despite warnings by Village staff that proposed detours would be insufficient to manage traffic flow.

FDOT leaders postponed the repair work to come up with what they said would be better traffic management at a meeting with the Village Council in May. 

“This is one of the reasons we asked them to move the construction to the summer when school was out and fewer residents are in town. Right now, we are going to take one step at a time,” Williamson said.

BIILY JEAN LOUIS is the senior editor of the Key Biscayne Independent. A native of Port Au Prince, Haiti, Jean Louis  has worked for Bloomberg and the Baltimore Sun. He is a corps member of Report for America

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BIILY JEAN LOUIS is the senior editor of the Key Biscayne Independent. A native of Port Au Prince, Haiti, Jean Louis  has worked for Bloomberg and the Baltimore Sun. He is a corps member of Report for...