News

Miami Today has announced a major milestone for The Underline taking place Oct. 19, 2020, a sneak peek celebration of Brickell Backyard, Phase 1. This event is hosted by Miami-Dade County as part of our #UnderlinePhase1LAUNCH efforts and is accessible by invitation only. It will bring together people who have been involved in the project over its five years of development, including elected officials and key supporters. All of which will be building up our official LAUNCH DATE to the public coming in November.

Click here to read more from Miami Today.

Miami, Fla., Oct. 13, 2020 – With the first phase of The Underline scheduled to open to the public in early November, the project has received a significant commitment from Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) through the NextEra Energy Foundation, which has pledged $500,000 to support this community park, urban trail and public art destination.

The donation is being used to sponsor a 2,000 square foot plaza in front of the Sound Stage, which is located in the Brickell Backyard’s Promenade. The plaza will be renamed The Underline Stage Plaza presented by Florida Power & Light Company and will be used for audiences and attendees of cultural programs like live music and artistic performances, as well as health and wellness activities like yoga.

“This donation from FPL shows their faith and commitment to The Underline’s impact on our diverse community,” said Meg Daly, president and CEO for Friends of The Underline. “As one of our early supporters, we appreciate this generous gift and are excited to see how the plaza will be enjoyed and experienced by our visitors.”

Brickell Backyard is the soon to be completed first section of The Underline, which starts at the Miami River and ends at SW 13th St. In addition to the stage, this portion of the project will also include art installations, meeting tables and spaces all of which are being designed to accommodate social distancing and encourage continued safety for the community.

“FPL is committed to helping make our communities better places to live, work and raise a family, and we are thrilled to join The Underline in their goal of bringing Miami-Dade County’s diverse community together in a unique urban hub and living art destination,” said Irene White, senior director external affairs for FPL. “We look forward to seeing the project’s progress as it delivers benefits to local residents and helps make Miami an even more desirable destination.”

To learn more about The Underline and how to support its programs, maintenance and management, visit www.theunderline.org.

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About The Underline
The Underline is a planned 10-mile urban trail, linear neighborhood park and public art destination that will span from the Miami River, north of Brickell Metrorail station, to Dadeland South. The Underline project will feature dedicated bike and pedestrian paths, amenities, art, programming, lighting, native vegetation as well as safety features and improvements at road crossings. The Underline will be built in phases, the first of which will begin in the Brickell area. For more information, visit www.theunderline.org and/or follow them on social on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @theunderlinemia.

Florida Power & Light Company
Florida Power & Light Company is the largest energy company in the United States as measured by retail electricity produced and sold, serving more than 5.1 million customer accounts or an estimated 10 million+ people across the state of Florida. FPL’s typical 1,000-kWh residential customer bill is approximately 30% lower than the latest national average and among the lowest in the U.S. FPL’s service reliability is better than 99.98%, and its highly fuel-efficient power plant fleet is one of the cleanest among all electric companies nationwide. The company was recognized in 2020 as one of the most trusted U.S. electric utilities by Escalent for the seventh consecutive year. A leading Florida employer with approximately 8,900 employees, FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Florida-based NextEra Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE), a clean energy company widely recognized for its efforts in sustainability, ethics and diversity, and has been ranked No. 1 in the electric and gas utilities industry in Fortune’s 2020 list of “World’s Most Admired Companies.” NextEra Energy is also the parent company of Gulf Power Company, which serves approximately 470,000 customers in eight counties throughout northwest Florida, and NextEra Energy Resources, LLC, which, together with its affiliated entities, is the world’s largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun and a world leader in battery storage. For more information about NextEra Energy companies, visit these websites: www.NextEraEnergy.com, www.FPL.com, www.GulfPower.com, www.NextEraEnergyResources.com

Underneath the Metrorail in Miami, a world-class 120-acre linear park and trail is set to debut this fall. The Underline is connected to a larger series of interconnected trails, called the East Coast Greenway. Projects within the East Coast Greenway will allow for car-free connections across the entire country. The group behind the East Coast Greenway is now advocating for the greenway stimulus that could create over $100 billion in health and environmental benefits, along with over 170,000 jobs.

Click here to learn more from Fast Company about The Underline and East Coast Greenway.

 

BY MEG DALY, September 15, 2020

Some people have called the era of COVID-19 “the great pause,” but I’m beginning to think that it’s the great accelerator.

As industry slowed, people became more active. With parks closed, kids home from school and fewer cars on the road, people took to the streets, sidewalks and trails as a way to exercise safely outdoors. On the future Underline, a 10-mile linear park, civic project and trail below Metrorail, the Miami-Dade Transportation Planning Organization documented that people were walking and biking on the “MPath” at unprecedented levels.

Many of us are reflecting: Are we at a moment that will change the way we work, live and play for generations to come? And will this change be equitable, offering the same opportunities and value to all residents?

To explore this question, Friends of the Underline launched a virtual program called Miami Voices. Each Wednesday over seven weeks, we examined a different topic about change during COVID-19. We talked about challenging topics such as equity and diversity. We had promising conversations observing how humans adapt to isolation by walking and biking. We shared how our collective yearning for parks and public spaces will shift priorities in future investment. We wondered if the development of parks can spark equitable development that serves everyone regardless of income.

Our guests’ backgrounds were varied: medical professionals, county park and economic development leaders, the founder of the Miami Marathon, local and national foundation leaders, landscape designers and artists. However, they shared a common commitment to bettering humanity and community.

We are living in challenging times. But history has taught us that from adversity comes opportunity and innovation. Telehealth is treating people from their homes, people are taking Pilates classes in their living rooms and The Miami Ballet is performing in a storefront. We talked about the innovative move to close Ocean Drive to support social distancing while also providing outdoor dining space for restaurants. We agreed that technology will forever change the way we meet, but that it will not replace personal interaction and demand for gathering spaces.

Experiencing these magical virtual salons with Miami’s most progressive thinkers was inspiring and lifted me up during our “groundhog days.”

Throughout our dialogue, it was clear, Miamians are resilient and able to adapt. We will make it through this pandemic, and our community can be better if we listen to the lessons of our challenges. I value so many of the comments that came out of our discussions with 21 of Miami’s leading stakeholders over seven weeks:

“People want to reclaim their streets and give them back to pedestrians and bikers.” Frankie Ruiz, founder Lifetime Miami Marathon

“For the first time, a broad swath of Miami felt like the street was for them.” Azhar Chougle, executive director, Transit Alliance

“Having access to a green public space is paramount to the health of communities, but some people in our community are left out.” Arturo Nunez, founder, AIE Creative

“People of color and lower income communities are feeling less connected. How do we reposition our public assets in a more equitable way?” Lilly Weinberg, director of Community Foundations, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

“Open spaces attract investment. It’s important to employers, employees and creates a vibrant community.” Michael Finney, president & CEO, Miami-Dade Beacon Council

“Public open spaces connect people with the environment and the natural assets of the community.” Kona Gray, principal, EDSA

“Great parks are in great cities. You heard it here first: The Highline in New York, Millennium Park in Chicago, and now The Underline in Miami.” Miami-Dade County Commissioner Dennis Moss.

Solving issues of health, transportation, equitable access, public spaces, housing, green spaces, resiliency and creativity is a heavy lift. It can take time to mobilize around them. However, during the time of COVID, we seemed to solve problems quicker than ever. Could the human spirit be at its best under duress?

One theme surfaced: We must demand more accessible, public green spaces. Residents and elected officials must come together to prioritize not just the construction, but also the long-term maintenance, of parks and trails that improve our quality of life and public health. In terms of transportation, our future is not just one car, one person. We must plan our streets to be flexible public spaces designed for all modes of transportation for all people of all ages.

Miami Voices provided insight into the importance of not only advocating for these solutions, but also creating a forum to allow for this much-needed discussion to take place. To that end, The Underline encourages new and current elected officials to invest in a greener, healthier more equitable and resilient Miami-Dade County.

Click to read more on The Miami Herald here.

 

City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez toured the progress made on the construction of the Underline’s Phase 1, Brickell Backyard, Tuesday, August 25th, 2020 — a project that will turn the land below Miami’s MetroRail into a 10-mile park spanning from the Miami River to Dadeland South Station. “It should be open in the fall, sometime in October, hopefully,” Suarez said. “It has a beautiful garden, a butterfly garden, and it’s going to have exercise equipment.”

🔗 See and read more here on Channel 10.

On Tuesday, 7/14, Mayor Valdes Fauli and Commissioners Lago, Fors, Keon, and Mena unanimously passed a resolution to match Miami-Dade County’s landmark $22.3 Million Federal BUILD grant secured in 2019 with a $7 million commitment from the City of Coral Gables.  The legislation, sponsored by Vice Mayor Vince Lago, provides a sum certain amount to be paid to Miami-Dade County by 2024 to be used for the construction of The Underline in Coral Gables. 

Read Miami-Dade County’s press release here for more information. 

Our pro-bono attorney, Daniel Balmori, has recently published an article in the Daily Business Review studying the correlation between infrastructure improvement and healing communities.

As Congress works on FAST Act and the INVEST in America Act legislation, both specific to US infrastructure investment, the focus is on new capital projects. What a lot of people don’t realize is that repurposing of existing infrastructure is also valuable. For example, the High Line in New York, Beltline in Atlanta, and The Underline in Miami are new facilities built from either abandoned or underutilized spaces and infrastructure.  

These types of projects are popping around the country, both in large and smaller markets.  While the focus has been on economic return on investment, which is substantial.  These projects are also revitalizing communities that were, in many cases, divided by interstates, railways, and major roadways.  This repurposed infrastructure provides community-building, public spaces and multi-modal options to residents including mass-transit, roads, multi-use trails, and greenspace.

To read the complete article click here.

The Underline has issued an Addendum to Request for Proposals (“RFP”) for Security Services for the first phase of The Underline, The Brickell Backyard.  Please click on the links below to access Addendum 1 and the updated RFP. Please note that the changes made in Addendum 1 are minor and for clarification purposes only.  To access the questions and answers received to date, please click on the link below:

All proposals for RFP 20-02 are due no later 5:00 pm on July 20, 2020.

Click here for Addendum 1

Click here for the Updated RFP

Click here for the Questions and Answers

The Underline Management Organization Issues ADDENDUM 2 to RFP 20-1, the Request For Proposals (“RFP”) For Grounds Maintenance and Porter Services

The Underline Management Organization (d/b/a The Underline Conservancy) has issued Addendum 2 to RFP 20-1 for the RFP for Grounds Maintenance and Porter Services. This addendum makes minor changes for clarification purposes only.  Please click on the links below to see updated information contained in Addendum 1 and Addendum 2:

3) The Updated RFP that reflects both addenda
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All Proposals are due Friday, July 17, 2020 by no later than 5pm. Please consult the RFP for all other important details.