On April 10, 2019, the Mayor and City Commission approved a Finance and Citywide Project Committee recommendation to amend the Special Events Requirements and Guidelines (“Special Event Guidelines”) via Resolution 2019-30783. One of the approved recommendations was a venue frequency chart, which provides the Administration and event producers a snapshot of requirements and limitations of each public space and to ensure that public spaces in high demand, do not experience “user fatigue”.
The Special Event Guidelines specifically mention Pride Park (formerly Convention Center Park). The approved maximum number of event days in the Park is limited to 120 days, per fiscal year, with priority given to Miami Beach Convention Center (MBCC) events. The 120-day limitation is also designated for Lummus Park Beachfront, Collins Avenue Corridor (beachfront, spoil areas, and Collins Park), and Ocean Terrace.
The Special Event Guidelines provide that clients of the MBCC, booking a substantial portion of the MBCC (e.g., all four exhibit halls), may extend portions of their event(s) to Pride Park (and Collins Canal Park) and that the MBCC has first right of refusal for any non-MBCC event wanting to activate Pride Park (and Collins Canal Park).
To promote continuity of operations of the MBCC campus, on June 23, 2021, the Mayor and City Commission approved, via Resolution 2021-31707, Amendment No. 4 to the Oak View Group (OVG360 and formerly Spectra Venue Management) Miami Beach Convention Center Management agreement to include the management of Pride Park and Collins Canal Park, as part of the Convention Center campus. Though this agreement expires in March 2024, the Administration expects to include the management of the MBCC campus in future MBCC management and operations agreements. Until such time, the Administration works jointly with OVG360 to monitor the activation of Pride Park and Collins Canal Park by safeguarding the frequency of use, protecting the health of the park, supervising how the park is utilized, and minimizing the impact of park utilization on the quality of life for residents in adjacent neighborhoods.
To date, the MBCC has multi-year annual license agreements with clients that could activate Pride Park. However, Pride Park has only been utilized for a few large events, which are either a full-building client of the MBCC (Bitcoin 2022, Miami International Boat Show 2022 and 2023), or have a multi-year agreement with the City to utilize Pride Park. DesignMiami is the only event with a multi-year agreement for the utilization of Pride Park. Together, in Fiscal Year 2022, these events accounted for approximately 86 days of the 120 days allowed by the Special Event Guidelines:
· DesignMiami – 54 consecutive days (October – December) – agreement will expire in December 2023 and number of days may be renegotiated. DesignMiami has formally notified the City of their intent to extend their contract for another five years and negotiations will take place soon.
· Miami International Boat Show – 19 consecutive days (February); and
· Bitcoin – 13 days (April 2022 – they will not activate Pride Park in 2023).
Accordingly, to date, for Fiscal Year 2023, the full use of Pride Park is scheduled to be 75 days for Miami International Boat Show 2023, Design Miami 2023 and Pride Family Day Picnic. However, this does not include the number of days the park needs for repairs and resodding after each event, which can range from days to months. Typically, sod takes 10 to 14 days to sprout shallow roots, and the roots stabilize in 4 to 6 weeks. Then the sod must be isolated (not walked on or cut) for another 14+ days to encourage growth. Repairs can range from days to months as well, depending on the severity of the restoration.
With respect to small events that utilize minimal portions of Pride Park, to date the following were scheduled: annual Juneteenth Commemoration and Miami Beach OnStage programming, which were free to the community, did not fence Pride Park, allowed for passive use of the Park by the community during the event, and were limited to one day or a few hours. These events, while well received, had very low attendance and the Administration plans to review further community programming, where appropriate, and engage the community.
The goal of the community programming will be to engage residents and locals out of their homes and into the Park to breathe new life into the area, prioritize family-friendly activities, and create a sense of place and community gathering. Programming under consideration, includes, but is not limited to, themed events celebrating music, dance, culture, youth, art, health and wellness, yoga, meditation, kite flying, furry family members, movie nights, fantasy theater, seasonal/holiday celebrations, educational exploration, environmental awareness and more fun programs. The mission is to create authentic experiences through community and cultural engagements and leverage our cultural, educational, environmental/sustainability, and parks and recreation partners and vendors.
Part of the Administration’s assessment includes a review of the current square footage fees for Pride Park ($.45 plus annual CPI) used to maintain the park, and security deposit levels to repair the park, if needed, following events.
Lastly, the Administration and OVG360 will continue to examine requests from MBCC clients and non-MBCC event organizers and weigh whether events quantitatively and tangibly benefit residents and do not compromise OVG360’s ability to attract the best conferences, conventions, festivals and meetings to Miami Beach. Given the recency of the opening and activation of Pride Park, curating balanced Pride Park programming, where commercial and community events can take place effectively and productively is a work in progress. However, the Administration is committed to preserving Pride Park in a manner that is in the best interest of the city.