HighWaterLine | Miami

9497365207_69dc47e33dMiami is the most climate vulnerable city in the United States primarily because:

  • The city was built at sea level.
  • Miami’s sole source of drinking water lies beneath the city in an aquifer, incredibly vulnerable to saltwater intrusion (when salt water seeps into fresh water).  In Florida, nearly 7 million people rely on this aquifer for their daily drinking water.

To learn more about Miami’s vulnerability please visit the Sea Level Rise Fact Sheet.

HighWaterLine collaborated with diverse Miami residents to use art to engage greater Miami in conversations about the aforementioned climate change impacts as well as solutions.

Diverse Miami residents created a public performance art piece the length of a marathon (26 miles) in which they demarcated houses, historic places and more, that will be underwater in Miami Beach and the City of Miami when 3 and 6 feet of sea level rise hits Miami. Residents handed off the chalker to one another to create these lines that literally connect the various neighborhoods.  This Miami art piece is based on data provided by Climate Central.

This large public performance piece took place November 13, 14 and 17, 2013. Please visit the HighWaterLine map to see the HighWaterLine routes as they unfolded as well as hear audio stories and see photos of participants. HighWaterLine| Miami is an ongoing, living project. The art reveal is one of many activities HighWaterLine | Miami participants are engaging in. Since August 2013, community members have participated in storytelling and solutions workshops as well as brainstorming sessions including defining climate resiliency in Miami.

Since the key to building a climate resilient community is engaging diverse members of the community, the initial group of HighWaterLine | Miami participants are expanding the project by engaging greater members of Miami’s community via the newly formed group Resilient Miami. They are planning additional creative public education projects.

Heidi Quante, coordinator of HighWaterLine, was quoted in the Miami New Times about one of the participants, Thorn Grafton, an architect and art deco preservation member whose grandfather was John S. Collins, after whom Miami Beach’s Collins Avenue is named:

“You have an older generation who basically helped make Miami Beach what is it today participating, as well as a younger first generation. You have people in Little Havana, who have a much different story from Thorn in Miami Beach, who might be hit by sea level rise because the river waters there will actually flow over faster than in other areas. And the beautiful thing about this project is that the line connects everybody.”

This webpage does not do justice to the variety of amazing participants and the active work they are doing to make Miami a climate resilient city.  Please visit this website in the coming months to learn more about the amazing ongoing work of HighWateLine | Miami.

Coordinator: Heidi Quante

Miami Co-Coordinator: Marta Viciedo

Via HighWaterLine.

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