In a daring initiative designed to make downtown Miami greener and less car-friendly, the Miami Downtown Development Authority will launch a month-long installation starting January 6, transforming two parking medians into an active public space with free events and entertainment through January 26, 2017.
This is part of a larger “Biscayne Green” project, which calls for the repurposing of medians from Southeast First Street to Northeast Sixth Street along Biscayne Boulevard, which are currently used for parking.
Not only that, but the long-term proposal includes repurposing two lanes in each direction for additional “pedestrian and bicycle paths, an exclusive public transit lane and relocated on-street parking.”
“Downtown Miami has experienced a nearly 150 percent increase in population over the past 15 years, with the majority of these new residents falling between the ages of 20 and 44,” says Miami DDA Executive Director Alyce Robertson. “This young demographic overwhelmingly favors public transit over traffic, connectivity and public space over sprawl, and community experiences over material accumulation.”
The temporary installation was funded by the Knight Foundation and The Miami Foundation while Biscayne Green is currently undergoing a Lane Elimination Analysis for the long-term vision of the project.
It sounds great in theory but one major problem still looms: Miami’s mass transit is still incredibly underwhelming, including the glaring need for dependable, efficient public transportation from Downtown to South Beach.
Here are the events for the month-long installation:
Biscayne Green Grand Opening Get-Down (January 6 from 7 – 10 p.m) - Celebrate the grand opening of Biscayne Green with handcrafted cocktails, live music and art.
Biscayne Screen with O Cinema (January 8, 15, and 22 from 6 – 10 p.m) - Watch movies cuddled up on the Green with free blankets, popcorn and empanadas.
Out of Office – Coffee + Wifi (January 11, 18, 25 from 9 – 11 a.m) - Enjoy the fresh air and fuel up for the day with coffee and snacks.
Baila on Biscayne (January 12, 19 from 7 – 10 p.m) - Enjoy al fresco music, dancing and people watching.
Taste of Downtown (January 14 from 6 – 10 p.m.) - Enjoy a taste of downtown with specialties from some of the area’s hottest culinary masters.
Brunch on the Green (January 15, 22 from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.) - Sip on mimosas and nibble on brunch offerings from local foodie hotspots.