Alice Wainwright Park-Miami
Alice Wainwright Park is a 28-acre waterfront park and nature preserve named after Alice C. Wainwright, who was the first woman elected to serve on the City of Miami Commission. Four years later, she was Miami’s first woman vice-mayor. All her life, Wainwright was a fierce advocate for environmental issues and worked alongside other South Florida environmentalists such as Marjory Stoneman Douglas.
In 1969, Wainwright helped found the Friends of the Everglades and wrote the organization’s charter. She was also the coordinator of the National Audubon Society’s southeast Florida chapter. Wainwright played a major role in numerous environmental actions in South Florida, including the acquisition of Big Cypress National Preserve and the extension of the Everglades National Park’s eastern boundary. This park was dedicated to Wainwright as part of the 4 million dollars “Parks for People” bond issued by the City of Miami in 1972. It was designated a nature preserve with the intent of protecting part of Miami’s natural landscape, a tropical hardwood hammock, in Wainwright’s honor. Other fragments of the once-widespread native landscape and plants can also be seen in Simpson Park and Sewell Park. From a lower elevation point, it is possible to see the exposed limestone outcrop of Miami Rock Ridge.
It has been acclaimed by many people as one of the most stunningly beautiful parks in South Florida with its lush green grassy areas and picturesque views of Biscayne Bay. The park was once considered partially responsible for some of the blight in the secluded neighborhood, which has long been home to many wealthy residents, including celebrities. This led to contention over street parking as higher enforcement and private security were on the rise.
The park’s entrance in Miami, FL is located on a secluded extension of Brickell Avenue that is disconnected from the main portion that was formerly signed as U.S. Route 1. The main center of the park can be accessed from off-street parking comprised of wood and gravel. Its tranquil setting provides an ideal spot to relax while providing a great opportunity to appreciate nature around you with its diverse wildlife inhabitants such as manatees, wading birds, ospreys, and other natural species that can be easily spotted throughout the park.
This part of the park only takes up about a third of the space, with more than half of the eastern side made up of thick trees. A small sandy path follows along the southern portion of the park into the trees and connects to other picnic pavilions with water fountains and trash bins. The sandy trail path is completely covered in shade and loops through the forest, giving you a secluded area to explore and walk around.
Furthermore, the park has a bathroom area, and parking is available on the street nearby. As for visitors with bikes, there are several racks for their use. The views in the park alone deserve a five-star rating, and the playground has a baby and regular swings and two sets of slides or climbing centers. Since the park is located in a good residential neighborhood, it is a safe place to take your kids, and police officers are always on patrol. This is a clean and quiet park that is ideal for children and families. It is also attractive for budget-minded visitors because it is free.
Visitors to Alice Wainwright Park can enjoy many activities while at the park including taking part in fitness classes such as yoga or tai chi classes, birdwatching, or volunteering at beach cleanups, and other events hosted by the Friends of Alice Wainwright Park group throughout the year. Other activities include having picnics in one of its two picnic shelters with access to grills perfect for barbeques amongst friends or family members; fishing from any point along its dockside pier; exercising using its fitness equipment; strolling around its jogging path; biking through its designated bike paths and many others. They also host many special events like concerts in the park or art shows throughout the year at their theatre located near the main entrance from Brickell Avenue. Additionally, there are plenty of trails within the park so visitors can take advantage of exploring nature on foot or bike while enjoying stunning views along the way. There is truly something for everyone no matter age or interest.
The 2.24-acre Alice Wainwright Park in St. Mark’s Parish will undergo major changes in 2011 as neighborhood and city leaders plan to redesign the 2.24-acre park. The project has received $415,000 from the city capital budget for construction, as well as a $500,000 grant from the state’s Parkland Acquisitions and Renovations for Communities program, of which $460,000 will be used for construction. It is expected that work on the $875,000 project will begin in August and be completed by June 2012.
It was said that the meeting at the Epiphany School on Monday night, attended by more than 25 people, was intended to inform residents about the playground’s current conditions, air opportunities, and any constraints park designers may face during the redesign, according to Cathy Baker-Eclipse, the city’s Parks and Recreation department’s project manager for Wainwright Park. As a general description, she described the renovation time frame as being “quite generous in terms of the construction schedule.”.
Cynthia Loesch, president of the Codman Square Neighborhood Council, said that her group has been working with the city’s Parks Department for years to renovate the neglected park, which has a softball and Little League field, basketball court with lighting, and play equipment. As she explains, the group circulated a petition showing residents are angry that this park has been neglected since 1992.
City Councillor Maureen Feeney said that the community’s enthusiasm for a renovation demonstrated to the city that it was time to improve the park. It became really clear to them that people have invested again in the activities in the park. Much of the talk concerned the basketball court and how to improve it. Residents were vocal about the state of the court and offered several suggestions to the design team and also expressed support for a second court for children, which would lower their exposure to older players.
In addition, one suggestion that was met with near-unanimous applause and support was the removal of the chain link fence around the park. Baker-Eclipse mentioned that one of the project managers refers to Wainwright as “the prison yard” because of the fence. Alternatives discussed included a green fence including vegetation and a lower decorative fence. Feeney jokingly warned that making the park too desirable could draw people from other areas to Alice Wainwright Park.