Kenny Malone

Kenny Malone hails from Meadville, PA where the zipper was invented, where Clark Gable’s mother is buried and where, in 2007, a wrecking ball broke free from a construction site, rolled down North Main Street and somehow wound up inside the trunk of a Ford Taurus sitting at a red light.

Malone graduated from Xavier University in Cincinnati, OH as a mathematics major and economics minor. He took an un-ironic oath to use mathematics for good not evil. Per that oath, Malone has taken on a wide array of non-evil numbers-based reporting endeavors -- everything from proving the existence of a home-field heat advantage for the Miami Dolphins to explaining South Florida’s economy in terms of automobiles on I-95 to exposing the extraordinary toll the densest cluster of assisted living facilities in the state had on both local authorities and the residents of those facilities in Lauderhill, FL.

Malone’s work has been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered, Morning Edition and Weekend Edition as well as APM’s Marketplace and The Story. Malone was given the Florida AP Broadcasters Award for Individual Achievement in 2012. His work has won national and regional awards for religion, financial, crime and investigative reporting as well as two Best in Show Green Eyeshade Awards, several Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards and the Scripps Howard Award for In-Depth Radio Reporting.

Malone lives in Miami Beach with his scruffy dog, Sir Xavier Charpentier III.

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Transportation
5:22 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

The Venetian Causeway Is Falling Apart

The westernmost section of the historic Venetian Causeway is proving the most problematic.
Credit PATRICK FARRELL/MIAMI HERALD STAFF

The Venetian Causeway is falling down. Crumbling, at least. 

As the Miami Herald reports, structural deficiencies were uncovered last month when the weight of a bus knocked a hole out of the westernmost section of the causeway.

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The End Of The Road
11:11 pm
Sun April 13, 2014

If You Thought The Driving Was Crazy, You Didn't Know About I-95's Drug-Smuggling Years

In his new book, Tony Dokoupil explores his fathers secret life as drug smuggler.
Credit Courtesy of Tony Dokoupil

Like many born in the '50s, Interstate 95 had some pretty wild days in the 1970s.

Florida was essentially “a 600-mile bong through which pot was pulled into the lungs of the country,” writes Tony Dokoupil. And “Interstate 95 was the glass tube of the bong,” he told WLRN. “You could not get high in America without touching something that had traveled on that particular stretch of asphalt.”

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Business Cards
11:30 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

A Case For The Paper Business Card In A Digital World

Inspired by a true story: Illustrator Ralph Cabrera's business card shows why hand-to-hand contact exchanges can still work.
Credit Ralph Cabrera

If there is one rule at the Miami Shakers and Stirrers Business Networking Mixer it is this: DO NOT forget your business cards.

On a recent Tuesday evening, organizer Janette Tarafa stood at a corner table of Brickell’s Fadò Irish Pub, cross-checking a list of guests. “Okay, let me get your name tag,” Tarafa said as a young woman walked up. “Do you have a business card?”

“I don’t,” said the young woman, “sorry.”

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The End of the Road
7:02 am
Mon April 7, 2014

On The Miserable Road: The Poetry of I-95

Inspired by I-95: A.R. Ammons was on I-95 when he saw the inspiration for one of his most decorated works.

Interstate 95 inspires more than just four-letter words, it turns out.

Twenty five years ago, poet A.R. Ammons and his wife were driving home from a visit with family in South Miami. Somewhere north of Dade County -- on I-95 -- Ammons looked out his window and there it was: one of South Florida’s infamous mountains of trash.

Garbage: A Poem was born.

garbage has to be the poem of our time because
garbage is spiritual, believable enough

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The End of the Road
2:26 pm
Sun March 30, 2014

PHOTOS: Highway Landscaping May Have Squelched Your Road Rage

Ponds, palms and poincianas. The roughly $6M makeover of the I-95/595 interchange is one of Florida's biggest highway beautification projects. Click through the images to see more highway landscaping.
Kenny Malone

There’s a good chance you’ve seen the work of Elisabeth Hassett and an equally good chance you didn’t really notice it. Hassett is the landscape architect for the Florida Department of Transportation’s District 4, which includes Broward and Palm Beach Counties. When there’s a need for highway-side landscape design, Hassett has almost definitely had a hand in choosing the plants and the layout -- a far more complicated art than you might imagine.

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From The Mouths Of Babes
12:15 pm
Thu March 27, 2014

Listen To An Adorable Little Girl Complain About Mayor Rob Ford... And Spiders

Credit Wikimedia Commons

Here, in order of priority, is what really gets the goat of one little girl from Toronto:

1. Spiders, for their webs are icky and sticky.

2. Toronto mayor Rob Ford. He is, according this little Torontonian, "not doing the job that he's supposed to."

Her full grievance is posted below. The second voice is her mother's.

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Let There Be Whine
12:07 am
Wed March 26, 2014

The Most Adorable Complaint Ever And Other Highlights From Our Pop-Up Complaints Booth

WLRN's pop-up complaints booth at the Wolfsonian-FIU.
Credit Diego Saldana-Rojas

We have heard your complaints. And they are hilarious -- especially this one from a little girl from Toronto who had thoughts on spiders... and the city's mayor:

Over the weekend we installed a popup complaints booth at the Wolfsonian FIU to coincide with the Power of Design Festival (co-presented by WLRN) centered on the theme of complaints. The concept was simple: Step inside our sound-resistant kiosk, speak into the microphone and gripe.

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The End of the Road
11:22 pm
Sun March 23, 2014

We Want Your I-95 Ire And Art

Commuter misery turned postal art, the I-95/395 interchange was featured in the U.S. Postal Service's "EARTHSCAPES" collection of Forever Stamps in 2012.
Credit U.S. Postal Service

If you wrote a play about road rangers or made a quilt from fallen mattress, or glued together a Fabergé-style egg from pieces of shattered headlights, then for the love of highway please contact us.

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The End of the Road
2:39 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Here Is What It Looks Like When Traffic Engineers Design Highway Signs

I-95 according to North Carolina: 76 different designs were submitted between 1956 and 1957 during a contest that would shape the interstate's image forever. North Carolina's colorful design is pictured above.
Credit Kenny Malone

If North Carolina had its way, the interstate system would look very different today.

Before President Dwight D. Eisenhower had even signed the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956, the American Association of State Highway Officials was discussing the need for “a distinctive interstate route marker.” 

The U.S. Highway System already had the iconic shield you see along U.S. 1, AASHO decided the fledgling 40,000-mile superhighway needed its own brand.

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The End of the Road
4:17 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Trying To Free Up 95 Express, FDOT Prices 'Lexus Lanes' At Lamborghini Rates

Credit Jeffery Katz / Florida Department of Transportation

“Lexus lanes” may have been too cheap for Miami. This past Saturday morning, South Florida drivers traded in for “Lamborghini lanes.”

The maximum possible toll on the 95 Express lanes increased from $7.00 to $10.50 — the mininum has doubled to 50 cents — in response to record numbers of motorists forking over what was thought to be a discouragingly high amount of money.

“That day you paid seven bucks, we were trying to get you not to go there,” said Rory Santana, who oversees Miami-Dade County’s stretch of 95 Express for the Florida Department of Transportation.

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Cuban Kitchen
4:29 pm
Wed February 19, 2014

A Cinematic Ode To Abuelita's Cuban Coffee

Luisa Toledo and her grandson Michael Toledo
Credit Kenny Malone

As part of our occasional Cuban Kitchen series here at WLRN-Miami Herald News, we bring you stories about our relationship with food and how food shapes our relationships. Listen to the story about Michael Toledo and his grandmother here, and read it below.

Michael Toledo was dozing off at his computer. It was 4 a.m. He was desperately trying to learn a digital video effect to impress his boss.

Against his better judgment, the 24-year-old tip-toed down the hall to his grandparents’ bedroom. Both were was fast asleep.

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The End of the Road
3:26 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

FHP's Operation I-95 Saturation Yields More Than 400 Citations

Credit Photo by Kenny Malone

The Florida Highway Patrol issued more than eight citations per hour during Operation I-95 Saturation last week.

In response to public complaints about a lack of enforcement on 95 in Miami-Dade County, FHP roughly doubled its enforcement Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., expanding the hours from the originally planned 10-to-4 timeframe.

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The End Of The Road
6:56 am
Mon February 17, 2014

Why You Don't Get Speeding Tickets From Your SunPass (And Why @EvanBenn Owes Us)

An FHP trooper in one of the few places on 95 Express where the shoulder is wider than eight feet.
Credit Kenny Malone

Two weeks ago we brought you a story about how the Florida Highway Patrol has been flooded with complaints about unchecked speeding in the I-95 Express Lanes. As FHP explained, there's only so much they can do given the abnormally narrow shoulders in those lanes.

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The End of the Road
7:21 am
Wed February 12, 2014

I-95: Road Songs With A #@!%ing Twist

One of the 1,000 vinyl copies originally made of August Campbell's "The I-95 Song."
Credit Photo by Kenny Malone/Record courtesy of Kathy Heinly

They write songs about roads: "Route 66," "Highway 61 Revisited"."Dusty, old roads with iconic signage that belongs on a pair of blue jeans.

“When you talk about ... the road as an attractive proposition, usually it’s open and it’s driveable,” says composer Carlos Rafael Rivera, who teaches American creative music at the University of Miami Frost School of Music. “I-95 is a little bit of the opposite. So I can see how songs would be written in a negative way about it."

"Negative" is, perhaps, kind.

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The End of the Road
7:32 pm
Mon February 10, 2014

FHP Cracking Down on I-95 Driving This Week

Operation I-95 Saturation will roughly double the number of FHP troopers on Miami-Dade County's stretch of I-95 this week.
Credit Kenny Malone

 

The people have spoken and now they must slow down.

On Feb. 10, the Florida Highway Patrol launched Operation I-95 Saturation in Miami-Dade County, essentially doubling the number of troopers on one of South Florida’s main arteries. The increased enforcement will be in place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday this week.

“Well, it came about because we’ve gotten complaints that there haven’t been enough troopers out on I-95,” said Trooper Joe Sanchez, a spokesman for the FHP in Miami-Dade County.

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