Commissioner Eileen Higgins brings residents, businesses, and workers together to reimagine a new, interconnected vision for Downtown Miami’s Government Center campus and urban core
Commissioner Higgins discusses the ideas of a group of residents on the Government Center Campus
MIAMI-DADE — Miami-Dade County Commissioner Eileen Higgins, together with the Miami-Dade County Regulatory and Resources Department (RER), hosted a visioning public workshop on “The Future of Downtown” at the Main Library Auditorium in Downtown Miami on Saturday, July 27, 2019. The workshop allowed residents, organizations, and public officials to share their ideas and provide input on how to revitalize the Government Center campus in Downtown Miami which consists of over 25 acres of underutilized County-owned property. Over 80 attendees discussed future plans for the area including affordable housing, transit connectivity, open green spaces, schools, social and economic impacts, and much more.
“As we embark on this visioning process and begin to reimagine what our Downtown could be, I wanted to make sure that we received input from the residents, families and businesses who call it home. We learned a lot about what amenities and services they feel are lacking for Downtown to be a vibrant and connected urban community,” said Commissioner Higgins. “With so many County-owned properties in the Government Center campus, we have an opportunity not just to construct a building or two, but to shape an entire neighborhood: A neighborhood that can be a model for urban areas that encourages transit usage and is green, walkable and resilient.”
Following the County Commission’s action to expand the Downtown Rapid Transit Zone (RTZ) to include the Government Center campus and its associated 16 County-owned properties, Commissioner Higgins sponsored a resolution requesting Miami-Dade County to conduct a visioning process to determine the optimum mix of uses and cohesive development plan to encourage transit-oriented development in the area. The Administration has moved swiftly to begin this visioning process.
“With so much growth and redevelopment happening in Downtown, we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to leverage the underutilized County-owned properties in the area and help Downtown continue to grow into a world-class urban center. My administration is committed to getting input from our residents and businesses as we plan what redevelopment would be best for the area. I am excited to see what the future holds,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez.
Downtown residents brainstorming ideas on how to revitalize the Downtown Rapid Transit Zone
Representatives from the Miami Downtown Development Authority (DDA) and the Downtown Neighborhood Alliance (DNA), who both participated in the public workshop, agree.
“A wonderful opportunity to get Downtown up to speed and provide a true community center that will include a better way to use public space for all ages,” said Cristina Paloma, Downtown Neighborhood Alliance (DNA).
This bold, complex, and long-term initiative captures the essence of why Commissioner Higgins ran for office which includes improving the quality of life for residents in District 5 by providing more affordable housing near public transportation to get people out of their cars.