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Keeping Current: José Martí Park


Keeping Current: José Martí Park is a design challenge in partnership with the City of Miami. The solicitation sought to identify an interdisciplinary team of architects, engineers, and city makers to develop a replicable climate adaptive schematic design and master plan to reduce flood risk and minimize the impacts of rising sea levels on the park. The city will then manage on-the-ground implementation. The goal is for the solution designed for the park to be adaptable at other locations with similar conditions throughout the South Florida region, considering the following questions:

  • How can we create a new model for adaptive redesign for South Florida?
  • How do we create a park that represents community engagement and stewardship?
  • How can we create places that support well-being?

We are working with city officials to gather community input and are calling on the expertise of our diverse group of project advisors to solicit the best ideas in climate adaptation.

The City selected Miami-based Curtis+Rogers Design Studio for this project.

About Jose Marti Park

José Martí Park is a riverfront park that experiences flooding due to sea level rise, a challenge faced by many other similar sites throughout the South Florida region. It is a 13-acre multi-use recreational space located in Little Havana, a vibrant community near Downtown Miami. The park is one of several public and private amenities located along the Miami River, a five-and-half-mile working river.

José Martí Park is particularly vulnerable to sea level rise. With little drainage and a topography that tends to trap water, nearly any amount of rain causes parts of the park to flood. It experiences particularly severe flooding during seasonal high tides, heavy rainstorms, and storm surge events. During King Tide, the highest tides of the year, its waterfront edge and parts of the surrounding community are flooded regardless of rainfall. The extent and frequency of these flooding events is expected to increase significantly in the future unless adaptive measures are implemented.

Additional Imagery
Jose Marti Park in Miami, FL. (Photo by Scott McIntyre)
Jose Marti Park in Miami, FL. (Photo by Scott McIntyre)
Jose Marti Park in Miami, FL. (Photo by Scott McIntyre)
Jose Marti Park in Miami, FL. (Photo by Scott McIntyre)
The Little Havana neighborhood in Miami, FL. (Photo by Scott McIntyre)
Domino Park in the Little Havana neighborhood in Miami, FL. (Photo by Scott McIntyre)
Community Engagement

Participatory design is central to our process. The team selected through the RFQ will work with Van Alen and local stakeholders to ensure that the design of this treasured public space will truly serve the needs and desires of the Little Havana community.

The Project Outreach Team is a group of individuals appointed by the city who are knowledgeable about and well-connected in the Little Havana community. Members of the team will receive a stipend for helping to plan, facilitate, and promote local community engagement events to inform the park design project.

Photos from our first event at Jose Marti Park, in celebration of the redesign project, are available here! Images by Angel Valentin and Linda Cheung.

Project Outreach Team

Ian Zink

Post-Doctoral Fellow, University of Miami

Madelyn Rodriguez-Llanes

Director, Centro Mater

Avra Jain

Owner, Miami River Inn

Carlos Dulzaides

Corporate Trainer, Hertz

Barby Rodriguez

Public Outreach Specialist, EV Services, Inc.

About Keeping Current
All photography by Scott McIntyre unless otherwise indicated

Keeping Current: A Sea Level Rise Challenge for Greater Miami is a series of open design competitions inviting interdisciplinary teams to develop solutions and ideas using the lenses of economy, ecology, and equity to adapt to sea level rise.

Van Alen Institute is working with local municipalities in the greater Miami area, along with elected officials, academics, business leaders, community advocates, and residents.


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