Miami-Dade County Pays To 'Exercise' Unused Train System

As delays continue in the construction of Miami International Airport's new American Airlines terminal, Miami-Dade County is forced to pay $54,000 a month to maintain a people mover train system in Japan.
April 27, 2006, 5am PDT | Mike Lydon
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"Like most of America, the new automated people-mover train for Miami International Airport needs exercise. Only its monthly gym bill is a bit heftier than yours: $54,258, to be exact.

Because the train was finished on time but the airport's North Terminal wasn't, the airport now pays Japanese manufacturer Sumitomo to 'exercise' the 20 automated cars. And so, 7,000 miles away in a city called Mihara, Japanese engineers drive the trains up and down a specially designed $600,000 track to nowhere.

On Tuesday, the County Commission reluctantly approved spending $1.98 million over the next two years on train workouts. 'This is a really ugly item,' said aviation director Jose Abreu."

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Published on Wednesday, April 26, 2006 in The Miami Herald
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