Reporting Maggie Newland
MIAMI (CBS4) – Crowds descended on Downtown Miami Friday for a weekend of big events. The Heat played to extend their winning streak to 25 in a row on the same night Ultra kicked off its second weekend, but to make it to the bright lights of the Triple A or the neon lights of Ultra, drivers had to get past the brake lights on Biscayne Boulevard.
Parts of Biscayne Boulevard are closed to accommodate the crowds and to add to the traffic tie-ups, tennis fans are heading to the Sony Open on Key Biscayne.
“Driving is insane, I hate it,” said Johnny Flynn who is in town for Ultra.
We found plenty of people opting for an easier route. The Government Center Metrorail station was packed with people using the Metrorail and Metromover to get around downtown. “It was fast like 20 minutes compared to two hours driving probably and 50 dollar parking,” said Ray Sanchez who took the Metrorail from Hialeah.
Irene Ferradaz of Miami Dade Transit said ridership goes way up with big events.
” Twenty-seven percent increase last weekend compared to the weekend before and we’re expecting an even bigger increase this weekend,” she said.
This is only the beginning. The Sony Open continues, Ultra goes on all weekend long, Saturday Alicia Keys plays the American Airlines Arena and the Heat play again Sunday.
The Metrorail and Metromover are extending hours until 1 a.m. all weekend to handle the crowds.