Developers Russell Galbut and David Martin unveiled the much-anticipated design for the 5th Street pedestrian bridge, a colorful tube conceived by renowned French artist Daniel Buren, to be constructed at one of the entrances to Miami Beach. Miami Beach Canopy, a work in-situ, includes colorful glass panels "to evoke a space that is literally painted with light" using sunlight "to illuminate a transparent cylinder that will take pedestrians across a rainbow of colorful shadows" according to the description provided by the developers. Open panels provide views to the water throughout the tunnel.
The bridge connecting the baywalk to the north and south is part of the Park on Fifth development from 500-700 Alton Road that includes a tall tower, a commercial retail and restaurant center, and a three-acre public park deeded to the City. The site plan includes a gentle incline to connect to a future bridge to the east of the MacArthur Causeway.
The concept for the bridge and its location were previously approved by the City Commission but Commissioners wanted a better design than what was initially presented, a “wow” factor for the City’s entrance. Martin and Galbut exceeded those expectations according to Commissioner Ricky Arriola. “You had me at hello. It’s beautiful,” he said after the brown paper wrappings were removed from several large poster boards.
Commissioner Michael Góngora called it “artsy” and “fabulous… I love it!"
The General Obligation Bond supported by voters in November includes $10 million for the bridge. Commissioner Mark Samuelian said the design will be a “nice GO Bond showcase” for residents.
“It’s better than world class,” said Mayor Dan Gelber. “This is going to be really a defining feature of the City.”
Commissioners unanimously endorsed the design. It will be before the Design Review Board in September.
According to Artnet, Buren is “best known for his distinctive site-specific installations of alternating stripe patterns… Throughout his work, he often employs simplified patterns as an approach to color and graphics in relation to architecture and space.”