Gird your loins, people. This is going to get controversial. Discuss!
I have come to regard green space and parks in Miami as very overrated. People are always advocating for more green space in our mostly-concrete surroundings, but then when such spaces are created, they are greatly underutilized. Just finished reading a piece on "The Grove Guy" that was linked from Curbed, about the grand opening party for the new Regatta Park on the site of the old convention center in Coconut Grove. In short, they had live music and free BBQ, but hardly anybody showed up. The truth is, parks in Miami are used mainly for just three reasons. One is for playing soccer (if there's a soccer field), another is for letting little kids play (if there's a playground) and third is for walking dogs. Other than that, people have little interest in going to parks.
The most obvious reason is that it's just so damn hot outside throughout most of the year, and most parks in Miami are nothing more than grassy lawns that offer relatively little shade from the sun. That's why you don't see more stuff like families picnicking or people just lounging around, reading a book or whatever. It's too hot!
I think people up north value parks more than we do, because when you are trapped inside for part of the year due to the cold weather, you have greater appreciation for being outdoors when it's warm enough. Whereas down here we take going outside for granted, since we have the luxury of being able to do it whenever we want.
So if just being able to sit around in the outdoors isn't enough to motivate people to come to parks, you have to give them something more interesting to do while they're there. And sadly, that is where parks like this one (Museum Park) and the aforementioned Regatta Park come up woefully short. Again, they are mainly just big, grassy lawns. Borrrrrrrring.
So yeah, that's the job that this proposed Museum Park Conservancy needs to tackle. Make it interesting! But so far, I'm not seeing anything in those renderings that is wowing me.—Dick Richards
· Museum Park conservancy could be just the thing [Curbed Miami]