GREENWAY SUBCOMMITTEE AND QUALITY OF LIFE JOINT MINUTES:
Minutes of meeting
DEC. 10, 2001
(THIS IS A PUBLIC DOCUMENT)
|The Miami River Commission’s Greenway Subcommittee met on Monday, December 10, 2001, 3:00 pm, Big Fish Restaurant, 55 SW Miami Ave Road. Dr. Ernest Martin chaired the meeting. The attendance sheet is enclosed||
Dr, Martin opened the meeting with
November 14, 2001 Greenway subcommittee minutes were unanimously
approved. Dr. Martin
provided the Greenways subcommittee with an updated Greenway development
Dianne Johnson, City of Miami Department
of Real Estate and Economic Development, provided the subcommittee with
an update on the awarded Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT)
“Lummus Park Riverwalk” ($900,000) and “Fort Dallas Riverwalk
Extension” ($1,260,000) grants. The
FDOT notified the City of Miami that the grant awards would be
re-programmed, unless the City submits a Joint Participation Agreement
and scope of services by March 1, 2002.
Johnson stated The City Manager has not signed the authorization
to proceed with the grant execution, as per the November 13 Memo from
Arleen Weintraub, City of Miami Director of Real Estate and Economic
memo states, “It is our intention to utilize the FDOT funding for the
Lummus Park area project to extend the riverwalk already being designed
for “Lummus Landing” to adjacent public property.
This would include arranging to construct a riverwalk on the
adjacent pump station property of the Miami-Dade Water and Sewer
Department, or on the public rights of way along NW South River Drive to
the 5th Street Bridge.”
Johnson stated the City Manager’s office has not signed the
authorization to proceed because it would improve Miami-Dade County
owned property. Johnson
stated Gimenez’s office wants the grant to be spent on City owned
property. Brett Bibeau, MRC,
stated the memo authorized spending the grant on City owned North River
Drive, as an on-road facility, between Lummus Park and the Fifth Street
Bridge. Johnson stated she
has heard rumors of property sales in that section of North River Drive,
which may have an impact on a Greenway in that area.
David Miller stated the Miami River Corridor Urban Infill Plan is
considering realigning North River Drive in the area in question by
diverting traffic along NW 6th Ave. and NW 6th
Street, which would create more space for the Greenway along N. River
Drive. Lavinia Freeman,
Trust For Public Land (TPL), stated the Knight Foundation’s $2.5
million Miami River Greenway grant award will in part fund a contract
with a team of professional engineers and planners who will do
construction drawings, specs, and cross sections for this area.
Freeman stated they will study the realignment of North River
Drive option. Johnson
stated the City Manager’s office would like to spend the “Lummus
Park Riverwalk” grant award running perpendicular to the River, on NW
2nd and NW 3rd Street, to link the Miami-Dade
County Government Center to Lummus Park.
Bibeau stated this newly proposed route is not a portion of the
Miami River Greenway Action Plan, approved unanimously by the City
Commission on May 10, 2001. Bibeau
Bibeau asked Dr. Martin to take up the
second item on the agenda out of order.
Bibeau introduced Lee Pinto, President of the Villagers, Inc.,
which is the oldest Historic Preservation Organization in Miami.
Bibeau provided the Greenway’s subcommittee with a draft Letter
of Understanding regarding the Villagers, Inc. $25,000 donation to the
Miami River Commission to fund top quality, long lasting historic
markers, signage and plaques along the Greenway.
Ms. Pinto stated the Villagers, Inc. strongly supports the Miami
River Greenway, and its link to historic preservation along the River.
The Villagers Inc. wanted to demonstrate their support with this
$25,000 donation. The
Greenways subcommittee unanimously supported the acceptance of the
donation. Dr. Martin thanked Ms. Pinto for the generous donation.
Johnson provided the subcommittee with the
status report on the “Fort Dallas Riverwalk” $1,260,000 FDOT grant
award. The FDOT has
notified the City that they must submit a Scope of Services and Joint
Participation Agreement prior to March 2002, or the grant will be
re-programmed. Arleen Weintraub sent a Memo to City Manager Gimenez on
November 13, 2001 explaining the only area in need of Riverwalk within
the boundaries of the grant award is along the North River shore between
S. Miami Ave. and Metro-rail. The
memo requested authorization to proceed with the assistance of the MRC
and TPL in asking the property owners to donate a twenty-foot wide
riverfront area to the City to build the Greenway with this grant award.
Johnson stated the Managers Office would like to use the “Fort
Dallas Riverwalk” grant to plan and design a path on Biscayne Bay in
Bicentennial Park. Johnson
stated there is some question as to whether Bicentennial Park is ready
for the path’s development, since the improvements to Bicentennial
Park are yet to occur. Johnson
proposed using the “Fort Dallas Riverwalk” grant for design and
engineering of a path in Bicentennial Park, and filling in old boat
slips at Bicentennial Park. Johnson informed the Greenways subcommittee that $15 million
of Bicentennial Park Improvements were approved on November 13, 2001 in
the Homeland Defense / Neighborhood Improvement bond issue. Furthermore,
Johnson stated the City was going to offer the “Fort Dallas Riverwalk”
$1,260,000 grant as part of the Marlins
Stadium Public funding package, but it does not look like the stadium is going to happen.
Dr. Martin asked Johnson if the City
Manager’s recommendation was to use the $1,260,000 “Fort Dallas
Riverwalk”, which the Greenways subcommittee thought was going to be
used to link existing riverwalk at the Hyatt and FPL facility, for the
Baywalk from the Hotel Intercontinental to Bicentennial Park.
Johnson corrected Dr. Martin, explaining the City Manager’s
office recommendation is to use the “Fort Dallas Riverwalk” grant
for a baywalk between the American Airlines Arena and Performing Arts
Center. Sallye Jude stated
the area proposed by the City is not within the boundaries of the Miami
River Greenway Action Plan. Jude
feels the businesses in the Miami River corridor need the Miami River
Greenway to come to fruition. Bibeau
stated the original 1994 “Fort Dallas Riverwalk” grant application
was clearly intended along the Miami River, not Bicentennial Park.
Bibeau pointed out the City of Miami owns North and South River
Drive in the Miami River Greenways phase I development area, from the
mouth of the River to the Fifth Street Bridge.
The Miami River Greenway Action Plan, approved by the City
Commission, proposes the Greenway as an on-road facility along North and
South River Drive, in the vicinity of Fort Dallas.
The Greenways subcommittee unanimously passed a resolution
(Dianne Johnson abstained) supporting the $1,260,000 “Fort Dallas
Riverwalk” grant award be utilized on City owned North or South River
Drive, as planned in the Miami River Greenway Action Plan.
Lavinia Freeman, TPL, asked Johnson what
the time frame is for the City Manger’s Office recommendation to
re-program the “Fort Dallas Riverwalk” grant to Bicentennial Park.
Johnson replied she had several conversations with David Korros,
FDOT, who is currently working within FDOT administratively to authorize
re-programming the grant funding to Bicentennial Park.
Dianne Johnson stated she has drafted the request to re-program
the FDOT grant funds from the Riverwalk to Bicentennial Park Planning.
In addition, Johnson explained the City is required to submit a
“LAP” application to Washington for approval.
Johnson stated she supported the November 13, 2001 Memo from
Arleen Weintraub, City of Miami Director of Real Estate and Economic
Development, to City Manager Gimenez, requesting authorization to use
the “Fort Dallas Riverwalk” grant along the River’s north shore
between Metro-rail and South Miami Ave/ Bridge, and the “Lummus Park
Riverwalk” grant along City owned North River Drive between Lummus
Park and the Fifth Street Bridge. Johnson
expressed her surprise when the City Manager’s Office directed her to
re-program the “Fort Dallas Riverwalk” grant funding for
Bicentennial Park’s Bay walk planning and design, and the “Lummus
Park Riverwalk” grant funds for east-west paths, off the river, along
NW 2nd and NW 3rd Streets.
Bibeau opened discussion on what was the
first item on the agenda. With
authorization of the full Miami River Commission and the Greenways
Subcommittee, Bibeau is applying for the Florida Department of
Environmental Protection’s (FDEP) Recreational Trails Program (RTP)
grant. Bibeau explained he
was applying for the grant to fund the development of the Miami River
Greenway connecting the existing path beneath the Metro-Rail on the
south shore to the proposed Miami River Greenway.
He noted that as per the RTP requirements, this meeting was
publicly noticed and all property owners in the proposed Greenway
section were faxed an invitation to attend the meeting.
Bibeau stated he had personally visited all businesses within the
area last week to discuss the RTP application.
The majority of the Miami River’s Federal Navigable channel
comes close to the river’s shore. In the proposed section of the Greenway, there is sufficient
room between the shore and Federal Navigable channel for the Greenway to
be a boardwalk over the River. The
second option for this section is an on road facility from the existing
Metro-rail path, east along SW Miami Ave Road, to the South Miami Ave.
Bridge. Bibeau asked Alan
Campbell, owner of the Big Fish Restaurant on the River’s shore in the
proposed Greenway section, if he had any objection to the boardwalk
option. Campbell replied he
supported the boardwalk option provided he could still dock boats at his
restaurant. Bibeau took the
Greenways Subcommittee on a walking tour of the two proposed options for
this Greenway Section. The
subcommittee noted the added difficulty of the extra permits required
for the boardwalk option, yet encouraged Bibeau to apply for the option
he determined as best.
The meeting adjourned.