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836 Expansion Could Cost Many Their Homes

MIAMI (CBS4) - Proposed changes to the Dolphin Expressway could cause more than traffic headaches during construction. About a dozen homes are in the way of the widening project.

Juan Viera's is one of them. He has lived in a duplex in the 1300 block of NW 32nd Place for the past eight years. He loves his neighborhood; he loves his mango tree; he doesn't even mind that his house is close to the highway. He calls the area "a very good and quiet place."

But if the 836 is widened, Viera may have to move.

"They're going to be expanding the expressway to make it a lot easier with the congestion," Miami City Commissioner Willy Gort explained to CBS4's Maggie Newland.

Gort says he knows how it feels to lose a home to highway construction.

He explained, "I think my family was the first that were affected back in the 1960's. My father and mother built a duplex right in the middle where the expressway took place so their property was purchased."

He says any home and landowners who lose their property will be compensated.

"My understanding is they have to go with fair market value and they have to have 3 estimates and they have an opportunity to work out a deal," Gort said.

But many of the people who live in the area near the Dolphin rent. Viera told us moving won't be easy.

"In the present time the economy is very bad it's hard to get another house," said Viera.

There have been public hearings about the issue.



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