Riding in Miami

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Anonymous's picture

I am being relocated to Miami for a few months to help my company start up business in South Beach. My LBS is packing up my bike and I am shipping it to my new office so I can ride Miami and surrounding areas while I am there. I should be living in Miami Beach but have never been and was wondering if anyone knows of any good bike shops. Also, are there any cycling friendly maps like we have here in NYC. Any advice would be appreciated.

Anonymous's picture
Steve Baccarini (not verified)
Eat @ Joes

Don't know any LBS'S but a great place to eat:


Anonymous's picture
<a href="http://www.OhReallyOreilly.com">Peter O'Reilly</a> (not verified)
South Florida bike comments

"I'm not sure I'm of help posting here. That said, I just did return from traveling to Southwest Florida, Ft Meyers/Naples/Marco Island area (2 hr drive due west of Miami).

From what I experienced I was left scratching my head. I saw plenty of the standard green-n-white bike route signs. I'm not sure if it was referring to the roadways or the adjacent sidewalks where I saw predominately most folks ride their bikes. I think only one of the couple dozen cyclists I saw was riding a road bike.

Equally strange and duly noted US Route 41 (Naples area) had a long and dedicated bike lane. It was literally adjacent to (as in no buffer space) traffic travelling 55mph. Even if you have the utmost conscientious drivers, the thought of getting sucked in by a semi-truck's wake is a very real concern. In some sections the bike lane was sandwiched in between the normal traffic and an exit lane which forked off. Scary indeed.

Between the idea of cyclists riding on roadways as an uncommon site and poor traffic design (considerations for bikes), I'd leave the road bike at home and rent a single speed, beach cruiser or take up running.

From my experience, the same holds true for Orlando area - I would not see why the same would not be true for Miami.
Once you leave the urban area - alot of the ""local"" roads are like Rte 9W without a shoulder. From what I am told, the best road cycling to be found is in the northern part of the state, like in the panhandle.

On the positive side, despite the demerits of cycling, I found driving throughout southern Florida to be quite a pleasant experience. (Mind you this is coming from someone who deals with the insanity of NJ drivers.)


Anonymous's picture
Frank (not verified)
Tangential remark concerning right-turning traffic and bike lane

I know this veers way off poster's orginal concern but your observation of bike lanes wedged between forward-moving and right-turning (?) traffic was something I observed when cycling in Tucson a couple of years ago--and admired/envied the luxury of space to incorporate such lanes in the traffic. If I've understood you correctly, cyclists wishing to proceed straight ahead through an intersection that offers cars a right-turn option move from riding from the far right of traffic, into a transitional zone bounded by dotted lines and lasting for about 10-20 yards, over which cars wishing to make right turns yield to cyclist, before also crossing left-to-right to get to their (now) far right to make their turns. When respected by all parties, it relieves the congestion and guesswork out of the equation for both cyclists and car drivers. Do you/any readers have other reactions/observations about this kind of lane arrangements? It seemed to work well when we tried it on our travels. thanks, F.

Anonymous's picture
<a href="http://www.OhReallyOreilly.com">Peter O'Reilly</a> (not verified)
That's correct

I certainly found it to be a nice design for driving. I guess it would work well for cyclists if drivers do in fact yield to cyclists and on lower speed traveled roads. I think this last condition is critical.

For instance, on the road I mentioned the speed limit was 55 mph at such section of road. If there wasn't that forked off right turning lane (think a less pronounced highway exit ramp), cars would then have to slow down to make a sharp right turn. This alternative is less favorable saftey-wise for cars for fear of being rear-ended, but is better for cyclists.

Regardless of this design, it's a small consideration when there's a bike lane immediate to 3-4 lanes of heavy 55mph traffic, with plenty of immediate turn-offs, i.e. lots of strip malls and shops accessible between intersections.

Anonymous's picture
John Miller (not verified)
Back on-topic

http://www.floridabicycle.org/bikeshop/directory_6.htm (Look under Miami-Dade County)

I would agree that on the surface, Miami sucks for point to point distance cycling -- there are too few through streets, and those are six-lane monsters perpetually choked with traffic. But a map of Miami reveals a grid of cul-de-sacs and self-enclosing neighborhoods, and therein I think is the secret to local cycling -- loops and circuits.

There are no shortage of bicycle shops in the Miami area, so someone must be riding somewhere down there, and USA Cycling shows no shortage of events. Like everything else in Florida, there's usually a drive to the starting location -- public transit does not exist in any sustainable form. I would drop in at a couple of convenient shops and ask about local groups, clubs and rides.

Anonymous's picture
Mordecai Silver (not verified)
Good shop

"Business Cycles -- John Dacey is the owner, great shop (especially if you like cool track equipment).

Also check out the velodrome, not in Miami, but about 20 miles north.

Anonymous's picture
Bill Vojtech (not verified)
Try the LAB

I'm sure the League of American Bicyclists has a club or 2 in Florida that can help with info on local routes/road conditions.

Anonymous's picture
Jason (not verified)

i rode in miami a few times this year - there's basically one well-traveled road bike route in the city area -- if you're in the beach, you leave the beach area toward downtown, head right on biscayne boulevard, then take a left and go over the bridge(s) to Key Biscayne, and then back. From Miami Beach it's about a 25-30 mile loop - most riders tack on some extra loops on the Key. Most days you can find a few roadies out if you want to sit in.

It's not the greatest ride on earth but when the weather is 85 you can't complain too much. PS: when you're on Key Biscayne look out for the lizards - they're squirrelier than squirrels! (I'm actually not kidding about that)


Anonymous's picture
Anthony (not verified)

I will be off to Miami in about a week or so, depending on how things line up and I wanted to say thank you to those who had some advice to share, I will look into all of it. I hope to be be back in enough to for the start of the SIG training, but am unsure of exactly how long I will be there, and how long it will take to hire/train people to run things down there. thanks again, and happy new year.

cycling trips