Drainage work should be done in 45 days, Miami Beach tells Belle Isle

Can you make it 45 more days without a sidewalk on the south side of the bridge from Belle Isle to Sunset Harbour?

Let’s hope so.

That’s the latest guess for how long it will take to complete the latest Miami Beach attempt to fix the frequent tidal flooding on Island Avenue at Venetian Way.

City engineers and projects managers shared the prognostication with a somewhat annoyed gathering of island residents at Wednesday’s annual Belle Isle Residents Association meeting.

Many people complained Wednesday about the danger that results from the drainage work blocking the south sidewalk — joggers and bikers pushed into causeway traffic along with moms pushing strollers and people walking to Epicure. And there was more general frustration about how the project has just dragged on.

Residents Association President Scott Diffenderfer complained that residents were told 18 months ago that it would take 45 days to fix the drainage problem, which results in salt water flooding the street during high tides.

Back in November 2009, the city capital improvement project manager for Belle Isle, Carla Dixon, wrote to Diffenderfer and others:

It appears that the existing  12 -inch diameter outfall pipe does not have sufficient carrying capacity to discharge the volume of water to Biscayne Bay during high tide events and therefore Jacobs Engineering Group has recommended that the existing  12 -inch diameter outfall pipe be replaced.  To this end, Jacobs Engineering Group provided construction plans for the replacement of this 12 -inch diameter outfall pipe to the City on October 7, 2009, and permit application package for our review and execution.  The City forwarded these plans to two(2) contractors on October 20, 2009, with a request for proposals to perform the work.  Proposals are due on November 24, 2009.

On November 6, 2009, Jacobs Engineering Group advised the City that they had forwarded the permitting applications to the Miami-Dade Department of Environmental Resource Management (DERM).  Yesterday, November 16, 2009, Jacobs Engineering Group advised our office that they failed to submit the permitting application to DERM.  Therefore, we have requested that Jacobs Engineering Group provide the permitting application to our attention no later than November 18, 2009 so that we may procure a check for the permit fee and hand deliver the applications to DERM on November 23, 2009.  It is anticipated that we can obtain a permit for this work in December 2009.
Upon receiving a permit from the regulatory agency(ies), we will proceed with the replacement of the outfall pipe from CS-3 to Biscayne Bay.

The city’s latest attempt to fix the drainage issue didn’t begin until Oct. 25, 2010. The work was supposed to last six weeks. It hit a series of snags, and stopped in late November so additional engineering work could be done. In the meantime, high-tide flooding became a regular experience.

City staff said in the last week that the engineering studies are complete, new permits have been applied for from Miami-Dade, and we are, again, 45 days from completion.

In the meantime, do be careful crossing the street.


One response to “Drainage work should be done in 45 days, Miami Beach tells Belle Isle

  1. I like when people complain! Instead of walking across the bridge, when the road floods you can swim across it. Whiners.

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