Demolition Is Being Planned For Downtown Miami’s Cultural Center, Designed By Philip Johnson

The Miami-Dade Cultural Center in downtown Miami is expected to be demolished to make way for a much larger development, according to the Herald.

The complex was completed in 1983, and designed by architect Philip Johnson, who was one of America’s top architects at the time.

However, there were few people who loved the cultural center when it was completed, and even fewer now, the report said.

In addition to being described as prison-like and not pedestrian friendly, the center is also regarded as having subpar detail and finishes, Herald reporter Andres Viglucci wrote.

Commissioner Eileen Higgins told the paper that the plan is to build a better library and museum than currently exists at the cultural center. The land will also have much more intense use – up to 4.2 million square feet can be built – which will revitalize the area and generate additional tax revenue.

The county is also opening up additional nearby properties for redevelopment as part of a plan called Metrocenter. Up to 23.7 million square foot could be developed on the Metrocenter properties, the county says.

 

Conceptual renderings of Metrocenter:


126 Comments
most voted
newest oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
anonymous
20 days ago

BTW, real vision would be demolishing the mess of ramps leading into downtown.

Anonymous
20 days ago

Then people wouldn’t be able to drive on and off I-95…genius move…of course, in your own little private Idaho, everyone takes Metromover or bikes to work, right?

dingus mcgee
20 days ago

thanks for clarifying, Sherlock. I’m sure he didn’t think of that.

Anonymous
20 days ago

I’m also sure he didn’t either, Einstein. Thanks for agreeing he is clueless.

Not Anonymous
20 days ago

I don’t think Idaho has a Metromover.

Anonymous
20 days ago

Google is your buddy….try it out on that private Idaho reference

Anonymous
19 days ago

Few cities have a Metromover, and are almost as useless as Miami’s. 1970s gimmick for monorail fetishists while making rubber companies rich with the tires.

Anonymous
19 days ago

^
Well, everyone don’t own a limousine with a driver to ride everywhere they go like you.

Anonn
20 days ago

Just a thought, they could replace then with normal exit ramps rather than long multi-block ramps that create a massive dead zone in downtown.

Anonymous
18 days ago

What is a “normal exit ramp” and how does it look?”

Anonymous
20 days ago

^^You got Stevie Wondervision

Downtowner
20 days ago

Unfortunately, the Cultural Center was terribly designed, and it reflects the societal ambivalence/fear of the city that was very common in the United States of the 1980s. Rather than being part of the urban streetscape, the Cultural Center stands like a fortress keeping the “evil” city at arm’s length. It is IN the city, but not OF it. The plaza is a thoroughly missed opportunity. It’s completely tiled and open to the scorching sun, without a shade tree in sight. Who would want to spend any time there? The whole complex was so ill-conceived from the beginning that we need a re-do which will reflect the Miami of today.

Anonymous
19 days ago

By “Miami of today,” you mean a parking garage at the urban streetscape, with maybe just a little corner of retail the developer will call iconic and a “pedestrian experience?” LOL…

Anonymous
19 days ago

Sad but rrue

Downtown Miami boring !
19 days ago

No matter what they do to downtown Miami it will never take off , #1 all businesses close by 6…..everyone goes back into suburbs and the vibe is just not there …..it will never be like BRICKELL!

Anonymous
18 days ago

Downtown will be like Brickell someday and probably better if they continue with the massive overhaul we now see of it.

Melo is sigma and chad
20 days ago

Hope the mature trees find a good home.

Anonymous
20 days ago

Yeah man, that “bleeding heart shit” has been noted.

Anonymous
20 days ago

So in the meantime we will have no history museum or library?

Ano
19 days ago

You are asking the most important question here: that library doesn’t get enough credit but it’s a great library and community support

Anonymous
19 days ago

Its alright to have a Museum or library downtown.. but just not in that location.

Jay
18 days ago

The library was in a great location until they decided to make the monstrosity that is Bayside.

Anonymous
17 days ago

You would say this library “was in a great location” no matter where they built it because your real objective is bashing Bayside.

anonymous
20 days ago

Great news and long overdue! Such an eye sore – it belongs in the middle ages…

Anonymous
20 days ago

Us Monks detest!..

Anonymous
19 days ago

If we had something from the Middle Ages, I would certainly question why it’s being demolished.

Anonymous
20 days ago

Tear down this monstrosity and replace it with a proper Robert Stern library.

Anonymous
20 days ago

“Library?”.. who needs a library when you can get internet even on your phone now?

Anonymous
20 days ago

I guess you learned everything you need to know from Facebook, right?

Anonymous
20 days ago

Admit it, you’re too poor to afford internet.. aren’t you?

Anonymous
20 days ago

^if all you know how to use is Facebook while on the net, then yeah sure

Wolfgang731
20 days ago

As difficult as it is for some (especially young people) to believe, there are still many people in this world, myself included, that actually love books and enjoy reading them, feeling their heft in their hands and even flipping those pages. Not everything in this world has to be experienced through an electronic device, be it on your desk, your lap or in your pocket. To the bibliophile there is never a substitute for a real book

Anonymous
20 days ago

It’s probably the same uncultured fools that couldn’t fathom taking a flight longer than 4 hours.

Anonymous
20 days ago

^^sitting in a flying beer can for over 4 hours next to sneezing strangers is a cultural virtue signal to you???

Not Anonymous
20 days ago

It’s better than sitting alone in your basement next to a pile of beer cans.

Anonymous
20 days ago

..which is what you do down in your mom’s as you can’t afford your own place because you had grand travel experiences instead

Anonymous
20 days ago

Actually yes. I went on a date once with a guy who had never had a passport before. That was enough to know there would be no more dates.

Anonymous
20 days ago

^^i’m sure they were glad to be rid of your shallow self as well

Not Anonymous
20 days ago

Stop defending yourself. Your are just sad that you are too poor to ever get out of your house, and due to that, you will die sad and ignorant to the beauties of the world.

Anonymous
20 days ago

^^ain’t your online life so cool…was that you who posted yesterday that they travel worldwide 3-4 months per year because Miami is too boring to stay put and they have this super special job that allows them to travel the world that often? Nice try kid.

Not Well
20 days ago

“Sometimes called “vagabond neurosis,” the term was officially added to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders as an “impulse-control disorder” and “psychiatric problem” in 2000. The definition states: “sufferers have an abnormal impulse to travel; they are prepared to spend beyond their means, sacrifice jobs, lovers, and security in their lust for new experiences.”

You don’t make an impact by being a “traveler.” You don’t actually do anything at all. You just see. You just enjoy. You just leech off of people who are actually living lives worth living and doing jobs worth doing. You don’t create while on the move, you create when you stay in one place.

Anonymous
19 days ago

Welcome to the new world, dude. I’m a digital nomad. Sorry this concept is so hard for you to comprehend. But please do enjoy being chained to your desk.

Not Anonymous
19 days ago

Actually, no. It was some one else.

Anonymous
20 days ago

But I bet you still use the internet to conveniently “google” mostly anything you want to know because it saves you time, gas, and the hassle of being in a library.

Not Anonymous
20 days ago

That still doesn’t take away the fact that the experience of being in a library is a wonderful one. Google doesn’t give you that same experience.

Anonymous
20 days ago

it’s all about the experiences, man….like the experience of having cramps or gas or driving to a library full of whining kids…what a thrill

Anonymous
20 days ago

the experience of driving to a public building and reading amongst whining kids and the homeless that which you could have read online at home….unforgettable

Anonymous
20 days ago

^
I’ll take the convenience of googling on the internet to find out something in the comfort of my house any day over going to a library and having some fifty two year old librarian shushing me because she think I said something too loud.

Anonymous
19 days ago

^
You probably like smelling the homeless in them also. Libraries went out of style like the phone booth.

NYC Transplant
18 days ago

As Miami continues to attract new residents from other cities, I would expect philanthropy to improve. That should help the arts in Miami, but also museums and libraries which often contain rarities that often are not available for online viewing. Even if they are, there’s a reason people go to the Louvre, Hermitage, Metropolitan Museum, or the New York Public Library at 40th St.

Jay
18 days ago

Believe it or not, a lot of folks like using libraries.

Anonymous
20 days ago

Robert Stern…that’s the guy who taught swim over at the JCC, right?

Anonymous
19 days ago

RAMSA would be a dream, but I have an unfortunate hunch the cheapest path will be taken i.e, an Arquitectonica cigarette box with the library tacked on it like it was an afterthought.

Anonymous
19 days ago

Sadly, I think you’re right…

Anonymous
20 days ago

This is a monstrosity, a real mess for people that use the government center station which is hard for buses to come in and out. This is only a gift to developers that have bought government officials and not thinking of the voters.

Anonymous
19 days ago

“Prison-like and not pedestrian friendly” and “having subpar detail and finishes” pretty much describes the new courthouse, and ever Arquitectonica building in the last ten years.

Ayn
20 days ago

I like the architecture of the library, and the open courthouse in front of it. who says it’s “prison-like” they want to replace it with a dull no personaly building. I like the building.

Ano
19 days ago

Same here. Could it have been better? Sure.
But at least it’s different. Unlike whatever generic building that is set to replace it.

Anonymous
19 days ago

“I like the architecture of the library”

But many or most people don’t.

Antennae
20 days ago

Unfortunately, the design wasn’t inspirational.
So much potential but very little use.

Southwest Til' I die!
20 days ago

I always liked the limestone thats incorporated around the base.

Rick Ariki
18 days ago

It has good lines, geometry and order. The Cultural Center creates a dialogue with the past and yes, it’s clearly a contemporary fortress where knowlege and treaures are stored. Yes the plaza is all wrong … but it could be modified. As a “cultural center” it looks the part snd it offers character. The renderings shown show zero character and more vertical shafts. I appreciate Miami’s new constructions … but the Cultural Center should stay. It’s a landmark.

popeye
18 days ago

developer gotta skim off the county land and air rights….maybe get a tax break in exchange for a kickback with the commission….anybody here remember that carlisle group scandal in the 2010s???? remember????

Anonymous
19 days ago

Call me old fashioned, but I think we should keep this public and expand some green space.

Anonymous
18 days ago

Go back to Kansas City Kansas.

Anon
19 days ago

Sad news and great loss to the city. I love that library and museum.
There are so many empty lots that this was unnecessary

Anonymous
19 days ago

No, you are wrong.

Anonymous
19 days ago

No lie, for years I thought that was a Monk Monastery.

Realtalk Reilly
19 days ago

That thing really was horribly designed. I think it was supposed to be reminiscent of some sort of colonial Spanish fortress, but it came out looking like the foreboding headquarters of the Spanish Inquisition. So it definitely needed to go, and be replaced by a new civic cultural center.

With that said, what they’re building it its place is NOT a new civic cultural center.

It’s the County’s right to sell out to private developers if they want, but own it. Tell us how much it’s going to profit the County, don’t feed us B.S. about a new museum and library.

alondra
18 days ago

truth here and it hurts the giga chads

Anonymous
20 days ago

What a sad joke. So much money spent on a design by one of the world’s most influential architects of the time.

Anonymous
19 days ago

HOK is a renowned architect, and look at the turd courthouse they are delivering. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Not Anonymous
20 days ago

I would love it if they replaced this with a world-class convention center or a museum. The Knight center doesn’t fulfill the needs of a city and the Downtown is lacking of museums apart from the few on the bay. I hope that the county includes something of this nature in the new development they are planning.

Downtowner
20 days ago

The Cultural Center was terribly designed, reflecting society’s fear of the city, a common sentiment in the United States of the 1980s. Rather than being part of the streetscape, the Cultural Center stands like a fortress keeping the evil city at bay. The plaza is a real missed opportunity, being completely tiled and open to the scorching sun. Without a shade tree in sight, who would want to spend any time there? The entire complex was very ill-conceived, requiring a re-do that reflects the Miami of today.

Not Anonymous
20 days ago

I think you already wrote this comment

Anonymous
19 days ago

Um, this was the development style since the end of WWII. Look at the newer hotels along Times Square “turned away” from it back when it wasn’t a very pleasant place, although seems to be turning back unfortuntely.

Anonymous
19 days ago

If those bigger monstrosities are the “concept,” I fear the final product.

Anonymous
19 days ago

I bet you wonder why the Metrorail doesn’t get more riders?

Marcos Peña
19 days ago

This will hinder our IPCC goals. But who cares right? Has long as we increase revenue.

SkidroweDC
19 days ago

A foundational aspect of the historic preservation movement in the US is that the new will be worse than the old it replaces. There was something to that in the early days of preservation (1960’s – 1980’s), but the idea lives on, even though it’s just no longer axiomatic. Nice to see that NO ONE is attempting to apply the idea to the Cultural Center. It seems almost certain that a replacement complex will be an improvement- probably a big improvement!

Anonymous
18 days ago

It’s about time they level that whole dump

Anonymous
20 days ago

Demolition Winning.

Anonymous
20 days ago

I’ll take that Development Concept of building renderings any day over what’s there now.

Anonymous
19 days ago

Let me guess. You’ll take Melo tower after Melo tower in the historic core to make you wet rather than utilizing space for innovative large-scale redevelopments.

Anonymous
19 days ago

Before The Melo Group built Square Station apartments and Art Plaza towers, I watched those weed and trash filled lots sit annoyingly empty for decades. Now if you’re not satisfied with what The Melo Group finally built there, then all I can say is, “tough tiddy kiddy.”

anonymous
20 days ago

i hope those renderings never come to life, those buildings are such an eyesore

Mmmm
20 days ago

Those are place holders for a massing study.

Anonymous
20 days ago

Haha.. an employee of Arquitectonica…

Anonymous but Famous
19 days ago

Not desirable to get rid of the ramp connecting I-95 with Miami Avenue. But along with improvements to exits to the north and to the south, the ones leading to and from the Hyatt Hotel property never made sense, and would have to go, as a minimum step to make Miami really great.

Anonymous
19 days ago

Move that FPL Service Center downtown first.

Dolly
19 days ago

I think it should be a preserve heritage site.it also helping to bring in fresh air, to all those height scoopers that gone up

Anonymous
19 days ago

wtf?

Dolly you prolly needn’t comment anymore.

Your moms mashed potatoes
19 days ago

Tear it all down and leave nothing but flat concrete.. jfc too much crap in an already overdeveloped city

Anonymous
18 days ago

You’ve been looking at and eating too much mashed potatoes.

anonymous
20 days ago

I’m not paying for the Herald – does it specify when it will be demolished?

Anonymous
20 days ago

F the Herald they suck

No Name
19 days ago

You know what you can get free through your public library – free online access to the Miami Herald and the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. Just need a library card, which is also free.

Ano
19 days ago

But they are demolishing the library. Darn paradox

Anonymous
19 days ago

They’re talking about demolishing the building that houses this library, but this is not the only library in the city.

go marlins
20 days ago

While this building provides nothing in terms of architectural significance it does provide a break from the white modernity that has consumed the central core since the 21st century boom. I would love to see a rebuilt library and history museum that is designed to look like an actual central library or history museum. Spanish revival, roman columns, anything! instead we can likely expect a lot of white concrete and glass unfortunately.

Anonymous
20 days ago

I like white concrete and glass. This place has looked like a big Mediterranean casket for the last 40 years.

Anonymous
19 days ago

Go to Museum Park then. This is in the historic core and needs something to complement the historic courthouse and other buildings, not something out of Brasilia or Tel Aviv.

Anonymous
19 days ago

Twenty years from now, and we’ll be saying the same for your white concrete and glass public buildings that always age badly.

Not Anonymous
20 days ago

I’m tired of the ugly orange and pink buildings that people call “Mediterranean”