Miami city officials really, really want to help build a Tri-Rail station downtown -- and they want cities in Broward and Palm Beach counties to foot part of the bill.
On Wednesday, Miami's Chief Financial Officer Fernando Casamayor sent out letters to 11 municipalities to the north asking for money to help fund the $69 million project.
Tri-Rail wants to connect to All Aboard Florida's under-construction transit hub, and has secured soft commitments for a majority of the cost. But a gap of about $10 million remains, in part because Miami city commissioners have balked at paying for the entire remainder of the bill not covered already by funds from Miami-Dade County, Tri-Rail and the Florida Department of Transportation. Mayor Tomas Regalado has also threatened to veto the use of any general fund dollars.
"Since public transportation is a regional responsibility and improving Tri-rail connectivity to the urban core would alleviate congested streets and highways across the entire region for residents and visitors, we are asking for your financial support," Casamayor wrote to officials in Hollywood, Boca Raton, Fort Lauderdale and other cities.
The city has until June 9 to present a funding package to the city commission.