The city of Miami Beach, after years of delays and fixes that didn’t work, says it will have the latest drainage solution for Belle Isle in place by the end of May.
But many Belle Isle residents may have permanent damage from the pumped up baywater that resulted from more than four years of futility in trying to fix the problem.
Capital Improvement Coordinator Carla Dixon, who has overseen the ill-fated project, sent this note to the Belle Isle Homeowners Association:
The contractor for the Belle Isle East Outfall Project remobilized on Monday May 2nd and has installed piping up to the existing seawall, core drilled through the seawall, and is preparing to install piping through the seawall this week. Once the piping is installed, the contractor will restore the seawall including the immediate vicinity of the bridge abutment. Weather (tides) permitting, the remaining work is anticipated to be completed by the end of May 2011.
Meanwhile, the association has received complaints from many island residents who say they have been told by mechanics working on their cars that the underside — including brake lines — are rusting.
President Scott Diffenderfer told Belle Isle Blog: “Ironically I took my own car in a couple of weeks ago for what I thought was the need for power steering fluid and was told I had a rusting steering column…close to $3K to replace.”
Nine Island resident Merle Weiss has a similar problem. And the Belle Isle Blog’s own car developed a rusted undercarriage, something our mechanic said “I’ve never seen on a car this new.”
Diffenderfer wants to document the damage to cars on the island. If this has happened to you, post a comment on the blog and we’ll get you in touch with the right people. Said Diffenderfer:
“In other neighborhoods, the City’s lack of planning to stop water intrusion at high tide is negligent but I guess can be considered a natural phenomenon. In our neighborhood, we never had salt water at high tide until the City installed the pumps. It’s very clear that this project is responsible for this situation and the damage that continues to occur.”