By: Maria Cruz, resident since 1976
Once again today at the Coral Gables Commission Meeting I was able to see how the employees, yes, the staff, decides what is best for us the taxpayers and residents. Thanks to Vice Mayor Lago who put it on the Agenda everyone should know what I am talking about.
We have been complaining about the Traffic Circle at Miller Road and San Amaro Drive for over 10 years. Several studies have been ordered to the tune of almost $50,000. When the first one ($27,748) did not come back the way the Public Works Department wanted, and even though Miami-Dade County agreed with the proposed solution, the stalling, the push back began. Instead of accepting the solution and changing the now called “roundabout” from two lanes to one, another study was ordered! Another $18,600!!!!To make the long story short, the staff successfully delayed the process and nothing happened. Traffic engineers, consultants, staffers, have come and gone. Now we have a new traffic engineer, but we are in a pandemic!!! We need more studies, more statistics, and we have to wait until the pandemic is finished and we are back to normal before a decision can be made!
What arrogance from Ed Santamaria, now Assistant City Manager, then Public Works Director, who back in 2017 wrote that he was looking for funding while waiting for the answer from the County!! Now he proposed to have more studies, more statistics and at least a year from the end of the pandemic to come back with the solution. Who does he work for? Who pays his salary? How come he was not interested in delaying the bicycle paths even though the residents didn’t want them? I guess it all boils down to what the staff wants. If they agree that a project is important, regardless of what the residents want, and or what the elected officials have decided, they will push to make it happen. If they don’t agree with it they will stall, delay, etc. until they can, in fact, stop the project.A very sad day for the City Beautiful!!!