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Old February 15th, 2012, 07:15 AM   #281
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What we have all been waiting for:



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FIU explores relocating the Miami-Dade County Fair and Exposition

Florida International University (FIU), the Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition, Inc. (The Fair) and Miami-Dade County are working with other institutions in the community to explore the possibility of finding a new location for the Fair so that FIU can expand into what is currently the fairgrounds, adjacent to the Modesto A. Maidique Campus. This expansion would allow FIU to continue growing and serving the needs of our community.

The project is currently in a discovery and exploratory phase. FIU administrators continue to meet with groups including the Miami-Dade Expressway Authority (MDX), Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), Department of Environmental Resource Management (DERM), the City of Sweetwater, the South Florida Water Management District, among others.

After studying as many as 16 alternate sites for the Fair, the parties have focused their attention on the Bird Basin property, owned by the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) and the Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund (BTIITF), as a possible site for the relocation. The Bird Basin property is off SW 8th Street near Krome Ave., about six miles west of MMC.

This land was originally purchased for the purpose of water management and conservation, but upon closer study, the SFWMD has concluded that the land is inappropriate for that use, partially because mitigation would be extremely costly. SFWMD has identified that property for their surplus list.

Below are some frequently asked questions about this project.

1. Why does FIU want to expand the campus onto the existing fairgrounds? What impact will this expansion have in the community?

FIU’s ten year strategic plan forecasts that FIU will continue to grow student enrollment, sponsored research programs and health programs in our Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine, our Robert Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work, our College of Nursing, and our College of Arts and Sciences.

FIU is an anchor institution that is Worlds Ahead in its commitment to innovation, economic development and job creation in our region. With an expected growth of 2,000 students a year for the next five years to reach a total student body of more than 60,000, FIU looks to this expansion as an opportunity to generate jobs, enhance research capabilities while solving issues confronting the community and the full build out of our professional schools including bio-medical and engineering.

2. Why is FIU not expanding on its other campuses to manage the growth, like the Biscayne Bay Campus?

In order to sustain our growth plans, we will also be further developing the land on our Biscayne Bay Campus. However, there are other concerns that must be managed before we can do so, including obtaining a secondary access road in the area. Even with this development, our growth is not sustainable unless we continue to expand.

3. What impact does the relocation have on The Fair’s current activities for the community?

This collaborative effort between The Fair, Miami-Dade County and FIU was established to ensure the continuation of The Fair’s commitment to enriching Miami-Dade and Broward counties. The relocation is being considered with an understanding that the proposed site has sufficient contiguous land that will allow The Fair to maintain its mission of promoting education and South Florida agriculture.

The Fair finds the Bird Basin property acceptable since there is accessibility and the property is only six miles from their current location.

4. Why is the Bird Basin property being considered as a possible site for the relocation? Should this land not be protected?

Early on in our discussions, Miami-Dade County asked their Park and Recreation Department in coordination with General Services Administration (GSA) and DERM to conduct an analysis of possible sites for the relocation in the County. After criteria were established to define acceptable land, the Committee identified sixteen sites.

Most of the more acceptable sites were located west or north of The Fair’s present Tamiami Park site. Considerations given to the various sites included issues concerning rock mining rights, mitigation, properties not for sale, contiguous acreage and accessibility. A consultant with expertise on fairs and expositions reviewed the options, conducted site visits and proposed recommendations for possible sites.

After considerable review and site visits, the Committee finally focused its attention on the northeast quadrant of the Bird Basin on land acquired by the State of Florida for conservation and water management purposes. Upon closer study, the SFWMD determined that this land was inadequate for the purpose for which it was acquired. The Bird Basin property was then identified by SFWMD as possible surplus land and so, we began discussions with SFWMD in December, 2011.

5. If selected as the site for relocation, how will the Bird Basin property be affected? What conservation efforts will be considered? What impact will the relocation have on property owners and residents near the site?

It is important to note that relocating The Fair to the Bird Basin property does not impact the current Urban Development Boundary and limits public usage. The intent is to establish a Miami-Dade County legacy park on the land that would, in part, accomplish the initial conservation and water management objectives originally envisioned by the SFWMD.

The Fair will only require a small portion of the property with a low impact, low density use that is more compatible with other stakeholders’ interest in the property not being developed. One clearly complementary use for a large portion of the property is the establishment of the County legacy that would provide exceptional outdoor recreational facilities for the citizens of Miami-Dade County and in particular, the residents and property owners near the site.

Development of a significant park along the Urban Development Boundary line would retain the rural character of the area and establish a permanent transition between development and the Everglades.

6. What is the process moving forward? What is the timeframe?

We are in a discovery and conceptual phase understanding that this is a long term project, one that could take five years or more. We are working with SFWMD to explore the possibility of the Bird Basin land being transferred from that state agency to FIU, also a state agency. Once FIU has the land, a second phase of the project could begin. Moving the Fair ultimately would involve a county-wide referendum.
For more information about this project, please contact Senior Vice President for External Relations Sandra Gonzalez-Levy at 305-348-7235.
http://news.fiu.edu/2012/02/fiu-expl...#comment-24532

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Old February 15th, 2012, 07:16 AM   #282
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That's FIU for ya
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Old February 15th, 2012, 05:06 PM   #283
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This has been a long time coming for FIU. The move of the fair has been spoken of as “imminent” for the better part of a decade. There’s no question that acquiring Tamiami Park would be a victory for FIU.

I think moving the fair further west certainly is not ideal, but in reality, I don’t trust Florida to make an environmentally sound decision here. Any action that could be potentially viewed as a weakening of the URB is something that should be taken very seriously, and any action that threatens the replenishment of the Biscayne Aquifer, likewise, should be avoided at all costs. The “environmental legacy park” could turn out fine, but I’m not convinced of that. Having lived in Youth Fair territory for seven years, there is nothing about the fair that is compatible with environmental conservation.
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Old February 15th, 2012, 06:08 PM   #284
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The only place I can think of in Miami-Dade and in the UDB that has a tract of land still available large enough to host the fair (and the other events that go on there year round) would be the old Homestead Air Force Base land (already owned by the County, but geographically remote) or a few failed megadevelopment areas in NW Doral (expensive).
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Old February 15th, 2012, 08:04 PM   #285
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Renderings of FIU's newest dorm, Parkview: http://www.hadparchitecture.com/detail.cfm?ID=101

It will include two phases, housing 1,240 in total. I'm not sure what the latest is - the website says construction was supposed to start back in May, but there has been quite a bit of activity recently on the architect's twitter @fiuparkview.

For those familiar with the campus, this will go on the Panther Hall parking lot.
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Old February 15th, 2012, 11:14 PM   #286
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I'm kind of afraid of what FIU will do with so much space. I was looking forward to more highrises on campus. I know it's one of the smallest campuses in the system and they could use the space, but they seem to be stuck with a midrise mentality.
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Old February 16th, 2012, 06:58 AM   #287
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brickell View Post
I'm kind of afraid of what FIU will do with so much space. I was looking forward to more highrises on campus. I know it's one of the smallest campuses in the system and they could use the space, but they seem to be stuck with a midrise mentality.
yeah, sadly .... I'm not very much a fan of highrises when good street-level architecture can be built, but I once read from somebody's post that the library building was built to support an addition of I don't know how many more floors, and I wish they would make it taller!!! I mean, it's already imposing and it has good architecture, but it looks like a stump, a fat midget, it needs to rise to levels where it can be seen for at least a mile in every direction xD
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Old February 17th, 2012, 05:22 AM   #288
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Well I was admitted to FIU for fall 2012, so I hope FIU has a prominent future.
Top 15 MBA program in the nation FTW!!!
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Old February 17th, 2012, 07:11 AM   #289
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I was admitted to FIU for Fall 2012 also! Lets just hope the College of Architecture has the same idea!
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Old February 17th, 2012, 06:21 PM   #290
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According to what I can see, this place has lots of potential and seems to be growing really fast by the day.
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Old March 1st, 2012, 05:10 AM   #291
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I'm hearing more and more about the Stocker Astroscience Center which was planned to be built right next to the Chemistry building at MMC. I think they're closer to actually beginning construction now.
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Old March 8th, 2012, 11:03 AM   #292
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterSmith
I suspect FIU's best shot is to jump to Conference USA....
I'm a little surprised this hasn't been mentioned since 2010. What does the FIU crowd think about the very real possibility that FIU joins the perhaps soon-to-merge MWC/C-USA? They want to add two teams and FIU is their top candidate.
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Old March 8th, 2012, 10:19 PM   #293
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Props to Mayor Gimenez for holding to line... but bad news for FIU

Mayor derails FIU land deal
http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/03/0...land-deal.html
Quote:
Opposition from Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez appears to have killed a complicated land swap proposed by Florida International University — at least the most controversial part of the deal, aimed at moving the county fairgrounds onto wetlands bordering the Everglades.

In a letter sent Monday to state lawmakers, Gimenez said he objected to pushing the Miami-Dade County Fair & Exposition from its long-time home abutting FIU’s main campus to a site outside the county’s sprawl-controlling urban development boundary (UDB.)

He repeated the message during an interview with The Miami Herald editorial board. While the county has been working to help “land-locked’’ FIU find ways to expand its main campus and new medical school in West Miami-Dade, he said, “I don’t support moving the county fairgrounds outside the UDB.’’
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Old March 8th, 2012, 10:50 PM   #294
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That surprises me. I'm going to remain optimistic and interpret this to mean that Gimenez is staunchly defending the UBD. If that's the case, I'm kind of happy about this. Sure, I'm disappointed that FIU will have to find another solution to proceed with expansion, which I'm confident they will, but I'm even more ecstatic about having a mayor who will go to bat for the UBD.

Then again, who's to say that Gimenez will protect the UBD when it is private interests rather than state interests looking for an exception?
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Old March 8th, 2012, 10:51 PM   #295
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DGM View Post
I'm a little surprised this hasn't been mentioned since 2010. What does the FIU crowd think about the very real possibility that FIU joins the perhaps soon-to-merge MWC/C-USA? They want to add two teams and FIU is their top candidate.
All signs point to FIU being invited to join the new conference. I think conference officials were meeting today actually to discuss the merger again. I've been hearing that May or June is when any expansion activity will begin.
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Old March 9th, 2012, 03:59 PM   #296
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The (County Owned) fair grounds needs a new home. The (County Owned) giant lot where the Zoo Miami un-used parking lots sit has been looking for a while for an amusement park operator to put a park there. Do we have a match?
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Old March 9th, 2012, 06:23 PM   #297
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http://news.fiu.edu/2012/03/mmc-road...ust-2013/37111

Quote:
Beginning 5 p.m. Friday, March 9, the road known as University Way will be closed for the next 18 months so that work can begin on the construction of new residence halls and a new parking garage on the west side of Modesto A. Maidique Campus.

….

A two-building residence hall and a 300-car parking garage will be erected on the current site of the Panther Hall parking lot. When the project is finished, the university will have added more than 600 new beds to its residence halls and created a new gathering area for students near FIU Stadium. University Way road will reopen once construction is finished in August 2013.

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Old March 22nd, 2012, 01:05 PM   #298
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http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com...pload_id=19177

FIU Stempel Public Health Complex designed by Perkins+Wills













Perkins+Will designs new facility for the study of extreme natural events

The new Stempel Complex at Florida International University, will house various academic and research programs combining to form the Extreme Event Institute. This institute will study and provide data to the US government, NOAA and various International Meteorological Agencies and Institutes on the effect of extreme natural events on people, society and economics.

Conceptually developed from various elements and studies of natural events such as hurricanes, earthquakes and tsunamis, the building is resolved around an oval shaped central courtyard. This will allow for maximum day lighting on all interior spaces, allowing for a maximum flexibility and internal reconfiguration, promote self-shading and enhance building and pedestrian cross circulation. The central courtyard orientates itself to the quad with enhanced connectivity from floating the research labs 2 stories above.

The incremental building footprint offset provides self-shading solar protection along the south and west fašades. The east exposure continues the alternating glass and precast concrete rhythm, transforming into large solar shading fins. In following the completed master plan, the Stempel Complex completes the Health Sciences North East corner, successfully connecting to existing buildings via covered walkways and enhances the new 'greenbelt' on the northern edge of the Main Campus.
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Old March 23rd, 2012, 01:35 PM   #299
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I think a separate public health facility will go quite a long way in improving the standing and reputation of the university. Improved health research facilities will translate to more NIH research funding, which is, in many ways, the best gift a university could ask for.
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Old March 23rd, 2012, 01:36 PM   #300
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Also, I like the design. I didn't like it at first, but it's growing on me.
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