Golf carts aren’t just for the players at Miami Lakes Golf Club anymore.
Residents will have an opportunity to register their personal carts with the town’s new golf cart program, which will allow owners to ride in traffic.
Resident and Realtor JC Fernandez has owned a cart for two years and said being able to eventually use it most places in Miami Lakes is great.
“I do plan to legalize it with the town,” Fernandez said.
Complying with new town rules for the vehicles will allow him to drive the golf cart farther from his family’s neighborhood.
Fernandez lives in the Royal Oaks neighborhood. Like four other families he knows, he uses the golf cart to take his two eldest kids to nearby Bob Graham Education Center.
He also rides in it to nearby Royal Oaks Plaza and the Park Centre Shops.
Once he gets seatbelts and mirrors installed, he said he’ll be able to take his youngest child to KinderCare in Business Park West.
Fernandez hopes that if more people use golf carts, traffic will ease.
“I believe it will alleviate traffic, we’re substituting a car for a golf cart, but it takes up less space,” Fernandez said.
Fernandez also thinks using carts helps the environment, as they are electric.
Golf carts will join another set of slow moving, electric vehicles in town, the Freebee ride sharing service.
The idea for Miami Lakes to become a golf cart town was born after Vice Mayor Jeffrey Rodriguez said during a town meeting that last year, residents had to transport decorated golf carts for a Christmas parade, rather than being able to drive them along municipal roads.
With the new program, there will still be some restrictions: Northwest 67th Avenue, Northwest 87th Avenue and Northwest 57th Avenue are off limits.
To participate, cart owners will need to present a valid driver’s license; provide proof of insurance; submit a permit application and notarized affidavit and pay a one-time, $50 fee to the town.
Carts will need to have safety equipment that includes seatbelts for all riders; reliable steering; functioning brakes; rear stop/brake lights; safe tires; rearview mirrors; reflectors on the front and rear and turn signals.
Golf carts may only be used during daylight hours and within town limits.
Residents who qualify for a permit must also submit to a yearly inspection by Miami-Dade County Police.
Officers will also be making sure golf cart drivers are safe drivers.
“We remind the residents that they still have to follow all the applicable laws and rules while they are on the roads because we will be enforcing them,” Maj. Javier Ruiz of Miami-Dade Police said.
To register a golf cart and for more information go to: https://bit.ly/3x0KES7.