Glimpse Miami’s Abandoned Marine Stadium and the New Perez Art Museum Miami

East, Newsletter
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
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Marine Stadium (Courtesy of Nicole Anderson/AN)

Marine Stadium. (Courtesy Nicole Anderson/AN)

Last month AN compiled a list of the most high profile projects taking place in Miami, and on a recent trip to the Magic City, we had the opportunity to visit two of these sites: the shuttered Marine Stadium and Herzog and de Meuron’s new building for the Perez Art Museum Miami (PAMM).

While new developments flood Miami, preservationists are fighting to save and revive the abandoned Marine Stadium on Virginia Key by Cuban-born architect Hilario Candela. In 2009, the graffiti-covered venue that once held powerboat racing events and large-scale concerts, was placed on the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s list of “11 Most Endangered Historic Places.”

Now that the advocacy group, Friends of Miami Marine Stadium, has won the approval from Miami City Commission for its Virginia Key Master Plan, including the restoration of the 6,566-seat stadium, the next step is winning the approval for the site plan and raising $20 million.

When the Miami Art Museum started to outgrow its cramped quarters in Philip Johnson’s Miami-Dade Cultural Center, museum officials and board members selected Herzog and de Meuron to design a new building (now dubbed the Perez Art Museum Miami) right on Museum Park overlooking Biscayne Bay, what Jorge Perez, real estate developer and the benefactor of the museum, has said is the “last big piece of public land downtown.”

Construction Site of Perez Art Museum Miami (Courtesy of Nicole Anderson/AN)

Construction Site of Perez Art Museum Miami (Courtesy of Nicole Anderson/AN)

“The board wanted a building that was first functional, and not just a piece of sculpture,” said Thom Collins, Director of PAMM.

The concrete and glass structure is a nod to Stiltsville, a vernacular form of architecture originally built on the bay in the 1930s, and will house a variety of exhibition spaces to accommodate works of different scale.

Thom Collins, Director of PAMM, Discusses Layout of Museum (Courtesy of Nicole Anderson/AN)

Thom Collins, Director of PAMM, Discusses Layout of Museum (Courtesy of Nicole Anderson/AN)

“Our project was principally driven by the recognition of the fact that Miami is becoming a home for contemporary art,” said Collins. “Our building now has no room for storage or conservation, or education.”

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