At the Underline Launch Party at SLS Lux Brickell on Thursday, October 18th, Friends of The Underline Board of Directors hosted a rocking celebration in advance of the project’s groundbreaking on November 1.  Philanthropists and luminaries gathered in the hotel’s Secret Garden, a lush, covered outdoor pool and garden on the 9th floor with breathtaking views of the Brickell skyline. The evening kicked off with a live, private concert by Friends of The Underline board member Emily Estefan, followed by project status comments by Founder Meg Daly. Brian Keeley of Baptist Health South Florida spoke at the hospital networks sponsorship of The Underline’s wellness programming. The evening culminated with the recognition of the James S. and John L. Knight Foundation’s investment in city-building initiatives like The Underline and closing remarks by Knight Foundation CEO Alberto Ibarguen.Catch CBS 4 Lisa Petrillo’ segment as she shares the excitement here.

Last Tuesday, October 2nd, the Miami-Dade County Board of County Commission voted to approve the contractor for The Underline’s Phase 1, Brickell Backyard. Our team is excited about the vote, excited about groundbreaking and thankful for the positive coverage by the Miami Herald.

After years of fundraising, lobbying and hype, the planned Underline park under parts of Metrorail’s elevated tracks has a government construction contract, with Miami-Dade commissioners approving a $14 million agreement to build the first half-mile of the project off Southwest First Avenue in the Brickell area.

Using a mix of state, county and city of Miami funds, the two-year agreement approved Tuesday hires a partnership between a Hialeah-based specialist in walkways and a longtime Miami-Dade contractor.

The 18-month contract requires the partnership, Central Pedrail, to expand the current paved path under the Metrorail and add a mini basketball court, workout equipment, game tables, extensive landscaping and other improvements designed to create a “linear park” that would eventually stretch from the Miami River to the Dadeland South Metrorail station.

Building the entire 10-mile Underline park is expected to cost about $120 million, with another $3 million required to maintain it each year. The “Brickell Backyard” segment that was funded on Tuesday represents just 5 percent of the full Underline, but founder Meg Daly said she sees the launch of actual construction along the route as a larger milestone than the seven-block footprint between the river and Southwest Thirteenth Street suggests.

Read the complete article here.

Today’s Miami Herald featured the future Grove Central Metrorail station developed by Terra Group and led by Friends of The Underline Board of Directors member David Martin. This station of the future boasts a monster solar battery that powers the station and a direct connection to the future Underline. Mr. Martin “hopes the project could set a precedent in the city – a region with the most to lose to rising seas but little movement in the development world to build a more resilient community.” Read the full story here.

“One project cannot save the entire country. But if we have 10, 20, 30 projects that adopt this same methodology, we can develop a kind of pattern or criteria that is expected in our industry.” David Martin

Your Friends of The Underline have an active October in store and we are really excited to see you around town at one or all of our community events below. 

Sat., 10/13 10 AM. Free Underfit Yoga at Brickell City Centre powered by Baptist Health South Florida. This new and improved Yoga class has more space to move and more teachers to perfect your pose. With music, a kids/family corner and post-class guided meditation and dazzling acro-yoga performance, grab your mat and sign up here.

Sun., 10/14 9:30 AM. Family-friendly group bike ride through historic Shendandoah neighborhood. Last month’s group ride took riders through “neighborhoods we have never seen before!” This month, with the help of Dade Heritage Trust, you’ll experience the beauty and wonder of historic Shenandoah while pedalling your way to good health. Sign up for the free ride here.

Sat. 10/20, 10 AM Walk The Underline with Meg Daly.  After enjoying sponsor Hotel Atton’s hospitality and coffee, we’ll head out for a private tour of the future Brickell Backyard led by Underline Founder Meg Daly.  You’ll see the future outdoor gym and running track, places for pups, outdoor dining room, butterfly gardens and more. This tour is limited to 20 and fills up fast so sign up now!

We are really excited to share that Miami-Dade County has dedicated the funds to purchase the Ludlam Trail property, one of the three trail corridors, including The Underline that make up the Miami Loop. What a wonderful team effort from the Miami-Dade County commission, which approved the land purchase yesterday, Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department and Friends of the Ludlam Trail.

“It’s a new world and vision for our county … with a focus on mobility and community”, said Underline founder Meg Daly.

For the complete article, click here.

Roll out of bed and pick up a paint roller on Saturday, September 15th between 9-11 AM and get ready to paint!

We are coming together to volunteer and help our neighbors near Vizcaya station whose fences have been tagged AND are getting citations from the city because their fences are not in code compliance.

You won’t want to miss this community feel-good event.  Details and sign up on Eventbrite here.

Read about Coral Gables Magazine’s profile of The Underline’s journey from idea to implementation in this in-depth story about the vision, leaders, collaborators, partners and supporters who are making it happen!  The full story is here:

How do you transform 300 miles of dead space below New York’s roads and trains into activated public community gathering spots? Much like The Underline, NYC’s Department of Transportation with the help of the Design Trust for Public Space is launching pilot programs to do just that.  Plus, they are experimenting with systems to use stormwater runoff and special lighting to try to grow plants to clean the air in these forgotten spaces.  Read the full article here.

Judy and Jon Zeder hosted a cocktail celebration for the planned 10-mile world-class linear smart park, urban trail and living art destination at their residence.

Guests mingled, enjoyed cocktails + refreshments while hearing Board of Trustee member Judy Zeder’s passion for the project. The Underline Founder, Meg Daly, shared that groundbreaking  is scheduled for the end of this year. Alan Bernstein gave a moving presentation on why he and his wife contributed to The Underline’s endowment in honor of the late Parker Thomson.  Notable guests included Camilo and Nina Miguel, Jorge Plasencia, Katherine Rubino, Arden Karson, Alan and Jayusia Bernstein, Lydia and Rudy Touzet, Brian Keeley, Jeff Berkowitz, Erin Newberg, Nick D’Annunzio and Raul Moas. To view the evening’s photos, click here.