Our Positions at the December 12th, 2023 Historic Preservation Board

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MDPL’s Advocacy Committee has reviewed the following projects on the upcoming Historic Preservation Board agenda and offers our positions below.

Please note: the lack of a position on a project does not indicate support for or opposition to that project. Have a comment about a project you would like to share with our committee? Contact us.

To review the Historic Preservation Board Agenda, including public participation information: Click Here

  1. 100 Block of Lincoln Road Right-of-Way and 1 Lincoln Road
  2. 624 Collins Avenue
  3. 220, 224 & 230 31st Street
  4. Citywide Digital Information Kiosks

CONTINUED ITEMS

HPB23-0575, 100 Block of Lincoln Road Right-of-Way and 1 Lincoln Road.

Current Site

Original Proposal

Latest Proposal (excerpt)

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Click to view the full City of Miami Beach Staff Report

An application has been filed requesting a Certificate of Appropriateness for improvements to Lincoln Road between Collins Avenue and the Beachwalk.

MDPL Position [updated for Dec 12th, 2023]: We are supportive of the proposed changes to the 100 Block of Lincoln Road, however, we have concerns about the revised design for the wall adjacent to the Ritz’s loading dock. We were generally supportive of the previous design’s coral-inspired wall and we prefer that to the new proposal, Art Deco geometric-inspired quartzite art. Understanding that the Board had some concerns about pedestrians colliding with or being injured by the coral-inspired wall, we would like to see if there was a way to make the design more pedestrian-friendly while retaining the materiality, which harkens to Miami’s origins.

We are appreciative of the other steps the applicant has taken to address the concerns of the HP Board, including narrowing the proposed driveway, decreasing the deflection of the pathway at the entrance, and increasing pedestrian safety signage. Overall, we are supportive of the application, with the caveat that we would like to see further refinement in the wall design and/or the return of the coral wall.

Coral Inspired Wall vs Art Deco Geometric Wall

MDPL Position [From September 12, 2023]: While we generally support the changes proposed to the Lincoln Road public right-of-way, we have concerns with the funding mechanism and development agreement for the proposed public-private partnership. The approved term sheet appears to place handcuffs on the authority of the HPB by tying funding for the roadway upgrades to the new Sagamore tower application. The City has successfully completed several streetscape projects without such private development promises… and under the regular procedure, a robust public participation process includes significant public outreach – that has not occurred here.

We support the recommendations related to the gateway design at the Lincoln Road street end and agree with the staff that the transition should be smoother than proposed. Also, we hope public beach access is maintained during construction.

HPB23-0592, 624 Collins Avenue.

Current Site

Proposed Structure

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Click to view the full City of Miami Beach Staff Report

An application has been filed requesting a Certificate of Appropriateness for the construction of a 1-story rooftop addition and design modifications to the building.

MDPL Position [From November 14, 2023]: We support the project in line with City Staff recommendations, including retaining the central balustrade form. The rooftop addition is an example of how our historic buildings can be adapted and augmented for maximum resiliency.

NEW APPLICATIONS

HPB23-0589, 220, 224 & 230 31st Street.

Current Site

Proposed Structure

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Click to view the full City of Miami Beach Staff Report

An application has been filed requesting a Certificate of Appropriateness for the partial demolition, renovation and restoration of three existing buildings, the construction of multiple additions, total demolition of an accessory structure and site improvements.

MDPL Position: We share similar concerns that staff had with the proposed changes to the buildings, mainly around new door and window proposals. We also would like them to look at the historical configuration of the corner windows as we believe this is an area that may need addressing.

Overall, we are supportive, subject to staff’s recommendations, based on adhering to the historical configuration of the buildings’ openings.

HPB23-0590, Citywide Digital Information Kiosks.

Current Site

Proposed Structure

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Click to view the full City of Miami Beach Staff Report

An application has been filed requesting a Certificate of Appropriateness for the design of Digital Information Kiosks to be installed within the right-of-way. 

MDPL Position: MDPL has previously held a position in opposition to digital kiosks similar to those in the application. However, understanding that the kiosk contract has been approved by the City of Miami Beach, we are focusing our position on the appearance and impact of the structures on the adjacent historic surroundings.

We appreciate the reduction in size of the kiosk by the applicant, and that they have proposed to highlight local businesses and cultural programming as part of the kiosks. With many of our existing wayfinding in a state of deterioration, we look forward to better maintained and more informative wayfinding than currently exists on our city streets.

We do have some concerns regarding the siting of some of the kiosk locations – in particular to ensure that kiosks are not placed in close proximity to historic structures. We shared this feedback with the applicants during their presentation to the advocacy committee. Aside from that, we are generally supportive of the proposal and look forward to the HPB members deliberations.

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