Miami Beach is celebrating a big milestone for arts and culture with today’s signing of the closing documents for the first tranche of Arts and Culture GO Bonds totaling $101.7MM. The bonds result from the November 2022 voter approval of the issuance of $159MM in debt that will be dedicated to upgrading and expanding city-owned cultural facilities and other important arts and culture anchors.
Major projects will now be moving forward at revered cultural institutions and spaces, including the Bass Museum of Art, Miami City Ballet, the Colony Theatre, Miami Beach Botanical Garden, Miami Beach Bandshell, MDPL Art Deco Welcome Center, Fillmore Theater, and Collins Park Garage / Miami New Drama, Wolfsonian-FIU, New World Symphony, Jewish Museum-FIU, the Holocaust Memorial, Miami Beach Classical Music Festival, and the Aquatic Sculpture Park.
The funds will also go toward the reconstruction of the Byron Carlyle Theater as well as the North Beach Oceanfront Center and the Miami Beach Hispanic Community Center, among other projects.
Speaking to the Miami Herald, Mayor Dan Gelber says this is a move toward expanding Miami Beach’s image as a mecca for the arts, beyond its spring break appeal.
“I’ve always felt like we sell ourselves short by just being a party destination. I don’t think that’s really who we need to be,” Gelber said. “We are always going to have beautiful beaches and great weather, but when we add to that these cultural amenities, we’re creating a special destination that can really choose who it wants to be.”
Miami Design Preservation League manages the Art Deco Welcome Center on behalf of the City. MDPL’s request for $1.42MM towards expanding the museum space was included in the approved GO Bond. Groundbreaking on a rooftop addition is slated to occur in the next few years, following the Museum Master Plan upgrades that are funded by a separate capital campaign.
Leaders of the city’s arts and culture institutions were invited to the signing of the closing documents at the Mayor’s conference room at City Hall. They were joined by Vice Mayor Ricky Arriola, City Manager Alina Hudak, Chief Financial Officer Jason Greene, Deputy City Attorney Ricardo J. Dopico, GO Bond Committee Chair Karen Rivo, and members of the bond issuance team. Afterward, the Mayor took photos with each director in his office.
Commenting after the signing, MDPL Executive Director Daniel Ciraldo stated “It’s incredible to see our city’s cultural anchors – almost all of them hosted within historic buildings and districts – receive significant investment in their facilities. This is a sign from our residents that there is strong support for arts and culture in our city. MDPL has always believed that the arts and culture create the foundation of our city’s DNA and keep our tropical, historic community vibrant and resilient.”
To learn more, visit www.miamibeachfl.gov/gobond-arts2022.