Avoid Traffic This Memorial Day Weekend
More than 38 million Americans are expected to travel for the 3-day Memorial Day weekend and with gas prices as low as they have been in almost five years, there will be a lot of cars on the roads. With an influx of cars and a lot of those cars going to particular events or destinations, traffic delays are expected on various roads.
Miami Beach, the Usual Memorial Day Weekend Congestion
Miami Beach is notoriously known for bad traffic during Memorial Day weekend. In addition to a couple hundred thousand visitors expected on Miami Beach for Urban Beach Week, there are various cruise ships scheduled to dock at Port Miami all weekend.
Traffic delays are expected to be slightly improved from past years because there will not be scheduled DUI checkpoints, but police will be heavily monitoring for signs of drunk driving. Additionally, all vehicles that cross the Julia Tuttle and MacArthur causeways will be scanned with license plate readers and if a driver is identified with outstanding warrants or if the vehicle has been reported stolen, cops will be pulling drivers over.
Miami Beach residents are encouraged to use the Venetian Causeway to cross the bay. Police will set up roadblocks along Collins, Fifth Street and Alton Road at night to prevent nonresident traffic on neighborhood streets.
South Florida Airports
Reports have shown that air travel for this year’s Memorial Day weekend is up by 2.5 percent, so expect some traffic on the way to and/or from the airport and inside of the airport. Considering recent reports about major delays due to airport security and the possibility of traffic delays, it is very important to leave early. Also, before you leave, do a GPS navigation search. If there is a bad accident, you will be able to re-route before getting stuck in a long traffic jam.
Many Floridians spend the major summer holidays on a boat, so boat ramps typically see a lot of traffic. As stressful as launching a boat can be, launching a boat with a long line of excited people behind you makes it even more stressful. So if you have plans to launch your boat, remember to be patient, keep your cool and offer to help if you see someone struggling with their boat or vehicle.
Major Traffic Arteries
Due to extra traffic flow in and out of South Florida, be prepared for general delays on the major road arteries — I-75 (Florida’s west coast), U.S. Highway 1 (the Florida Keys) and the Florida Turnpike (Florida Keys or Orlando) — going in both directions on Thursday, Friday and Monday. Of course, general delays can go from very, very slow delays if an accident occurs, so be patient out there.
Traffic Delays and Warnings Around This Weekend’s Special Events
Urban Beach Week: Thursday, June 26 to Tuesday, June 1 on Miami Beach.
Main roads: Julia Tuttle and MacArthur Causeway.
Specific Changes: Ocean Drive from Fifth to 15th streets will close to vehicular traffic at 7 a.m. Friday, May 27. Collins Avenue from Fifth Street to Española Way will be one-way heading north from May 27 to May 31. Washington Avenue will become one-way heading south between Fifth and 15th streets starting at 7 p.m. each night from May 27 to May 31. The easternmost lanes will be used for vehicles, and the remaining lanes will be closed to traffic except emergency vehicles. Normal traffic patterns will resume at 7 a.m. on Wednesday, June 1.
7th Annual Great American Beach Party on Saturday, May 28 from 10:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Fort Lauderdale Beach.
Main roads: A1A and Las Olas Boulevard.
Specific Changes: A1A will be closed from Las Olas Boulevard north to Castillo Street from 6:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 23 to 1:00 a.m. on Sunday, May 24. Motorists traveling north on A1A will be detoured west onto Las Olas Boulevard, north on Birch Road, east on Bayshore Drive, and back north onto A1A. Alhambra Street, Seville Street and Granada Street will be open to local traffic only. Heavy traffic and delays are expected from S.E. 17th Street north to Bayshore Drive
Drive safe. If you’ve been drinking, use a designated driver, stay the night, or use Uber or a Taxi. Do not drive drunk. There’s no excuse.
Photo Source: Shutterstock
Photo Copyight: Paul Gana