Workers who lunch around Northwest Miami-Dade on Friday afternoon may encounter traffic delays.
That’s because Vice President Mike Pence is flying into Miami International Airport Friday morning to join elected officials, members of the Venezuelan exile community and other stakeholders at a roundtable discussion about the political crisis in Venezuela. He’s expected to deliver remarks rallying support around Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó, whom the U.S. and several other countries have recognized as Venezuela’s interim president.
Expect heavy traffic around Miami International Airport where Air Force Two is scheduled to land at 10:50 a.m. Doral’s main thoroughfares of Northwest 87th Avenue, Northwest 72nd Avenue and Northwest 36th Street are likely to be affected by the federal-sized fracas.
The vice president and second lady Karen Pence will be driven west to Iglesia Doral Jesus Worship Center, 9000 NW 15th St., sometime before noon.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to the Miami Herald
Pence will be joined by Carlos Vecchio, who this week was recognized by the State Department as Venezuela’s top diplomat in the U.S.; Julio Borges, the former president of Venezuela’s National Assembly; and Carlos Trujillo, the U.S. ambassador to the Organization of American States. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and senators Marco Rubio and Rick Scott will also attend.
Pence met with Vecchio at the White House on Tuesday.
With two men claiming the presidency, and opposition-led protests leading to an estimated 700 arrests and 35 deaths in a single week, Venezuela is in a state of serious upheaval. In Doral, the U.S. city with the largest percentage of Venezuelan-born residents, more than a thousand expats rallied on Jan. 23 to call for the ouster of Venezuela’s current leader, President Nicolas Maduro. On Monday, the U.S. announced sanctions against Venezuela’s state-owned oil company.
Pence is scheduled to conclude his remarks around 1 p.m.
Presumably, the quickest route from Signature Flight Support at MIA to Iglesia Doral would be by taking Northwest 36th Street, then the Palmetto Expressway South to Northwest 12th Street. The motorcade could avoid taking the Palmetto Expressway by taking Northwest 72nd Avenue, Northwest 25th Street, Northwest 87th Avenue and Northwest 15th Street — or by taking 36th Street all the way down to 87th Avenue and then arriving on 15th Street.
Either way, expect delays and plan accordingly.