Construction Permit For Watson Island Mega-Project May Be Days Away

Island Gardens may be just days away from being granted a construction permit.

Records show that the developer has a phased foundation permit pending. A separate as-built has been filed in an attempt to legalize The Deck at Island Gardens, a lounge that has already been completed.

Earlier this year, the developer filed a lawsuit against Stephen Herbits and a group called Coalition Against Causeway Chaos. The suit says that the group has been obstructing the project for more than a decade.

Separately, a super-yacht marina sub-contractor has threatened a lawsuit against Flagstone and their contractor over unpaid bills.


An email from Coalition Against Causeway Chaos:

Watson Island Action Update

Unless you want your commute time between Miami and Miami Beach on the MacArthur increased by as much as 40 minutes we urge you to email or call your Commissioner immediately.

Here’s why:

Any day now Miami bureaucrats could issue a permit to begin construction on the Watson Island mega-development located smack in the middle of the MacArthur Causeway.

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has rejected a 2004 traffic study the bureaucrats are relying on to grant permission to build:

“More than a decade has passed since [Flagstone’s] traffic study and traffic volumes and the roadway network have chaned” and the project “has been dormant for so long”

Other experts are also saying “No!”

Here’s why you need to contact your Commissioner and ask them to demand a current study and a public hearing on the traffic effects of this mega-development.
FDOT and other experts worry that in the rush to begin this project before a May 1 deadline the City’s bureaucrats are relying on 13 year old data. Ignoring the fact that Miami has grown and changed.
The increased traffic volume from this mega-project threatens public safety (ambulances, fire and evacuation)
The increased traffic will strangle access between the City and the Beach adding major inconvenience and costs to residents…employee commutes…businesses…events…and visitors.
In short, traffic strangulation of this potential magnitude threatens us all and our economy.
Today the Coalition Against Causeway Chaos sent a detailed letter to Miami Commissioners today informing them that as currently proposed the Flagstone Watson Island project violates State law

It must not proceed without a proper traffic study




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4 years ago

Build it and they’ll come.
All you folks worried about traffic, move to Clewiston. Big cities come with traffic. Name one without it. You want Miami to be a major metropolis with World Class status but you want it to remain a village feel.
Sorry, you can’t have both. Obviously, the mass transit is needed and that willalso follow…

4 years ago

Awful location for retail.. no transit, nothing walkable… solely relies on automobile traffic.

4 years ago

Short sighted comments. This town exhibits less and less planning ‘smarts’ from a totally needless ‘Signature Bridge’ to little planning or implementation of mass transit. You don’t like it – move somewhere else?

City Commissioner
4 years ago

Yes, you can design cities with village feel, it just takes a bit of effort. You just have to think without the “car’ as the main element.

4 years ago

Move to Clewiston?

4 years ago

I agree 100%. I read that a lot here and I don’t get it. NYC, Chicago, LA, San Fransisco, Dallas, Atlanta. Gridlock! You really can’t have a large cosmopolitan world class city without a large population who lives there because of what the city has to offer and sadly, most major cities are hundreds of years old and did not have the foresight to “plan” for traffic issues. No one wants to pay more taxes. Where does the money come from? Can we select the neighborhoods where the system will run through without bickering, or wasting time and money on “studies”? Can our municipalities work together to get it done? Can we elect politicians who will get it done? What buildings should be demolished for construction and what stays? Will we spend enough money to make it really work or will there be delays because we did not buy enough “trains”? Will we ride it if it goes nowhere, like Metrorail? Keep dreaming folks…this isn’t going to happen any time soon.

4 years ago

The Coalition Against Causeway Chaos cites the problem of traffic congestion to Miami Beach. For many years Miami Beach was the primary destination for people coming to Miami. This is no longer the case. The Miami City Commission should do what is in the best interest of the City of Miami. That its decision may affect traffic to Miami Beach is no longer relevant. There is no longer any reason to go to Miami Beach; there are other beaches in the Miami area. Mala Suerte.

4 years ago

this smells of the developers tricky way of falling within the timeline to appear to start construction but not really construct much other than forms for foundation….well see another 10 years of delays…..the city commissioners must end this once and for all if vertical construction does not start within 1 year

4 years ago

I live in Miami Beach, I don’t think the project will materially affect traffic, so long as the off ramps are sufficient.

4 years ago

Is that a model of the latest design? So many modifications were made during this decade that i don’t even know what te current design is