Scott vetoes Underline, public infrastructure funding

Funding denied for stormwater drainage, roadway improvements, linear parks and more

Jun.June 24, 2015 05:15 PM

Design District (Credit: Marc Averette), rendering for the proposed Ludlam Trail, and a rendering for the proposed Underline park

Out of the $461 million Gov. Rick Scott vetoed from the state budget this week was funding contributing to a number of South Florida projects, including the contentious relocation of the Miami International Boat Show and the planned Underline linear park.

Friends of the Underline Founder Meg Daly said she was prepared for the $2 million cut to the planned linear park under the Metrorail path.

“I’m sort of one of those who believes you don’t count on it until you have the check,” Daly told The Real Deal. “We already were looking at a diversified base for funding.”

The Underline is hosting another series of public meetings this week aimed at gauging and informing the community. The public wants a lot of amenities, and the challenge is balancing great design with cost, Daly told TRD.

Cost can vary when it comes to planning portions of the path that run through major intersections, Daly said. Designs can range from adding a pedestrian flyover to repainting a crosswalk.

Friends of the Underline is looking at municipal and county funding, and will target federal and private funding next year. A completed budget will be part of the master plan for the 10-mile long linear park, which will be released in September.

Scott also denied $5 million in funding to Florida International University for a controversial land swap that would move the Miami-Dade Youth Fair.

In addition, he vetoed $3 million for the city of South Miami’s Ludlam Trail Corridor improvements. The 6.2-mile long trail that runs from West Flagler Street to U.S. 1 near Dadeland covers 72 acres. The developer, Flagler, has proposed a mixed-use project that would concentrate development at Blue Lagoon, Bird Road and Kendall Drive. Nearby residents want to turn the 78-100 foot-wide trail into a park.

The Miami International Boat Show had requested $500,000 for infrastructure improvements to relocate the 2016 event to the Miami Marine Stadium Park and Basin, which the governor also vetoed. In a statement released to TRD, Cathy Rick-Joule, director of the Miami International Boat Show said the improvements are not contingent on that funding.

“Plans will continue for the 2016 Miami International Boat Show and we are committed to continuing to bring an annual economic impact of $600 million,” Rick-Joule said.

Here are a handful of infrastructure projects affecting real estate in South Florida that were denied funding:

  • Bay Harbor Islands sewer manhole lining project: $100,000
  • Coral Gables Miracle Mile and Giralda Avenue drainage: $200,000
  • Doral stormwater improvements: $325,000
  • Miami Beach stormwater project: $750,000
  • Biscayne-Everglades Park-to-Park greenway trail: $1.5 million
  • Dixie Highway roadway improvements: $650,000
  • City of Miami-Miami Design District public infrastructure improvements: $1 million
  • City of Fort Lauderdale rapid re-housing project: $800,000
  • Holocaust Memorial Miami Beach: $300,000
  • Museum of Contemporary Arts: $49,000
  • Vizcaya Museum and Gardens Trust: $400,000

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