Tag Archives: Flooding

How rising seas threaten our homes on Belle Isle and surrounding islands and neighborhoods

With sea-level rise of two feet, we see significant flooding.

With sea-level rise of two feet, we see significant flooding.

More than most, residents of our neighborhoods know the realities. Our streets have flooded for years at high tide, and we’ve endured the cost and inconvenience of road raising and pumping installation projects that will attempt to keep our neighborhoods dry.

We own or rent properties at risk from rising seas. Many of us wonder when, even with higher sea walls and pumping stations, the sea may be lapping at our door.

The Florida International University’s School of Journalism & Communication did a nifty project on sea-level rise and its South Florida impact, called Eyes on the Rise. As part of it, they created a tool that allows you to project how different levels of rising seas could impact South Florida. Using the tool, you can look at specific addresses.

At three feet, the sea spreads.

At three feet, the sea spreads.

We’ve reviewed the impact on Belle Isle and the surrounding areas with a sea level rise of two, three or four feet, but you could do this yourself and put in your house or building address to see a full range from no-rise to six feet.

At four, all wet.

At four, all wet.

For context, scientists now project a rise of 6 to 10 inches in our area by 2030. Six feet of water level appears outside of our lifetime, but nevertheless, all the projections are sobering.

Once sea-level rise reaches two feet,  buildings are in jeopardy — Costa Brava, Island Terrace and the Venetian Isle Apartments on Belle Isle, for example.

condosAs the water rises, more buildings and neighborhoods are swamped along with the homes on the Venetian islands and high-rises in Sunset Harbour and down West Avenue. As you use the tool, you see all of Sunset Harbour under water except for Sunset Harbour 1800, 1900 and the Townhouses. So is virtually all of West Avenue, the Venetian Islands and all of Belle Isle except the Grand Venetian, the Vistas, 9 Island Avenue, 3 Island Avenue and the Standard.

The Real Deal website compiled a list of major condos at risk at different level or sea level rise.

 

Belle Isle Residents Association meets tonight

Here’s a reminder: You can meet your neighbors and learn about key issues facing the neighborhood when the Belle Isle residents Association holds its annual meeting, tonight in the card room at Belle Plaza, 20 Island Ave.

The gathering starts with a wine and cheese reception at 6 p.m., followed by a business meeting at 7 p.m.

We’ll get an update on ongoing and future road projects (get ready for bridge construction at West Avenue), the proposal for an five-story apartment complex on the Belle Isle Key site, progress on the Venetian Causeway and more.

The association will also elect new officers and hear from you about your concerns.

 

 

Residents meet tonight to discuss West Avenue Streetscape

A residents group is meeting tonight to discuss the upcoming streetscape improvements on West Avenue. It starts at 6 p.m. at the 1688 West Avenue.

The meeting, in the condo meeting room at that address, will give neighbors an overview of what’s ahead for the West Avenue project, an 18-month effort to reduce flooding and add wider sidewalks, a bike path, pedestrian crosswalks and shade trees to the area between Fifth and 17th streets.

Some work has already begun on 17th Street and the area of West Avenue just south of 17th Street. And part of West Avenue will close this week (requiring a detour) for work on a new pumping station at 14th Street.

In all, the work is expected to last a year and a half, and it will be done in phases. The first phase is nearest to Sunset Harbour and the Venetian Isles. A second phase is the area between Fifth and Eighth streets.

And then there are two other major work areas, at 10th and 14th streets. The entire project, which won’t be completed until 2017, will also include rebuilding Bay Road south of the Collins Canal.

Pump station work at 14th Street will cause West Avenue closure next week

The reconstruction of West Avenue has scarcely begun, and there is a big-time detour happening next week.Alton_map_022015 (1)

Starting Monday, West Avenue will be closed between 12th and 15th streets in advance of the installation of underground pump station structures and pipes at 14th Street.

The work is part of a larger project to add five new pumping stations in the Alton Road – West Avenue corridor at Fifth, Seventh, 10th, 14th and 17th streets, in addition to raising West Avenue as much as three feel to combat flooding.

For next week’s work, northbound drivers on West Avenue will have to turn east on 12th Street to Alton Road, then head north on Alton before turning left on 15th Street to return to West Avenue.

Southbound drivers will have to turn left on 15th Street, then right on Alton, right on 12th Street and left to continue south on West Avenue.

In addition there will be lane closures on 17th Street east of the Collins Canal, an inconvenience that started last week.

Venetian bridge repair tops agenda for Feb. 10 Belle Isle annual meeting

The closing of the Venetian Causeway west bridge for reconstruction. Changing traffic patterns since the switch to SunPass. What’s next for Alton Road and West Avenue roadwork. Fixing the flooding in Sunset Harbour.

If any of those issues affect or interest you, mark your calendar for Feb. 10. That’s when the Belle isle Residents Association will hold its annual meeting,

Expect those topics and others to be discussed, with representatives from Miami Beach city government, the Florida Department of Transportation and Miami-Dade County on hand to explain what Belle Isle residents can expect in the coming year.

The meeting starts with a social hour at 6 p.m. in the card room at Belle Plaza, 20 Island Avenue.

If there is a topic you’d like to see discussed, email the association at  bira@belleisleresidents.org or call association president Scott Diffenderfer at 305-458-3334.

As Alton Road construction winds down, plans for West Avenue gear up

The city of Miami Beach is holding a public meeting Monday to share construction plans for West Avenue between Fifth and 17 streets.

Please don’t tell us you thought the completion of work on Alton Road would end the west side disruption on South Beach. Nope.

The meeting starts at 6 p.m. at City Hall, 1700 Convention Center Dr. It will be in the city manager’s large conference room on the fourth floor.

City engineer Bruce Mowry is supposed to provide an overview of the West Avenue Neighborhood Improvement Project, which includes the elevation of streets and sidewalks and drainage initiatives to deal with flooding issues.

 

Belle Isle resident leads the fight against Miami Beach water pollution

Dave Doebler

Dave Doebler

There’s a great profile in today’s Miami Herald of Belle Isle resident David Doebler, who has devoted amazing energy to cleaning debris from Miami Beach’s waterways to keep them — and the city drainage system — clean.

Doebler already has received the key to the city from Miami Beach, and his pesonal crusade has led the Beach to look into cleaning the drains more frequently.

He also put together two Slide Share presentations on all the bad stuff he found in Beach waterways.

Take a look.