MacArthur Causeway

County Causeway
MacArthur Causeway, connecting Downtown Miami and South Beach
Coordinates25°46′40″N 80°09′51″W / 25.777711°N 80.164233°W / 25.777711; -80.164233
Carries6 lanes of
SR 836 / SR A1A
CrossesBiscayne Bay
LocaleMiami to Miami Beach
Official nameGeneral Douglas MacArthur Causeway
Maintained byFDOT
DesignCauseway, beam, girder
MaterialSlabs, girders, fill
Total length3.5 miles (5.6 km)
Longest span0.4 miles (0.64 km)
Clearance above68 feet (21 m)
DesignerFrederic R. Harris, Inc., American Bridge Company
OpenedFebruary 17, 1920; 104 years ago (1920-02-17)[1]

The General Douglas MacArthur Causeway is a six-lane causeway that connects Downtown Miami to South Beach via Biscayne Bay in Miami-Dade County.

The highway is the singular roadway connecting the mainland and beaches to Watson Island and the bay neighborhoods of Palm Island, Hibiscus Island, and Star Island. The MacArthur Causeway carries State Road 836 and State Road A1A over the Biscayne Bay via a girder bridge. Interstate 395 ends at Fountain Street, the entrance to Palm Island Park which has a traffic light as well as bus stops.


In the late 1910s, with the deteriorating wooden Collins Bridge (now, the Venetian Causeway) as the only direct land route between mainland Miami and the barrier islands of Miami Beach, construction on the roadway began in 1917. The roadway, dedicated as the County Causeway, was completed in 1920. Watson Island was reclaimed surrounding the western end of the roadway, completed in 1926.

Having undergone several lane and structural expansions following opening of the original two-lane road, the State Road Board and Dade County Commission voted to rename the causeway in honor of World War II General Douglas MacArthur in 1942.[2] The causeway was accessible from mainland Miami via Biscayne Boulevard and intersecting side streets through the 1960s. Construction of direct highway access to I-395 was complete in the 1970s. The replacement of the westernmost and easternmost spans began in the 1990s, as the eastbound lanes of the bridges were completed in 1995 and westbound lanes finished in 1997.



  1. ^ Lavender, Abraham (2002). Miami Beach in 1920. Mount Pleasant, SC: Arcadia Publishing. p. 160. ISBN 0-7385-2351-8.
  2. ^ "Causeway Our Thanks for Bataan". The Miami News. April 6, 1964. p. 1A. Retrieved October 20, 2010.

25°46′40″N 80°9′52″W / 25.77778°N 80.16444°W / 25.77778; -80.16444