FYI Miami: June 23, 2016
Below are some of the FYIs in this week’s edition. The entire content of this week’s FYIs and Insider sections is available by subscription only. To subscribe click here.
ELECTRIC COSTS FALL: Area households paid an average of 10.8 cents per kilowatt hour of electricity in May, down from 11.6 cents in May 2015. Miami households in May paid an average of 18.8% less than the nationwide average of 13.3 cents per kilowatt hour. In May 2015, electricity costs were 15.3% lower in Miami than the nation, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
CRIMES DECLINE: Violent crimes in areas patrolled by the Miami-Dade Police Department were 9.57% fewer in the first five months of this year than in the first five months of 2015, the department reported, though homicides increased from 32 last year to 36 this year in the period. Non-violent crimes decreased 4.09% in the five-month period from the first five months of 2015. The report does not include crimes in areas patrolled by municipal police departments within the county.
PLAN ROLLING AHEAD: Skate Free Inc., a non-profit, plans to transform an old parking lot under I-95 into a skating park and green space. The 40,000-square-foot project is estimated to cost $1.5 million and has the support of the Miami Parking Authority. The effort is led by Nick Katz. The group opened a bare bones Lot 11 in April at 328 NW Second St. Mr. Katz and parking authority CEO Art Noriega met with Miami commissioners April 28 and the commission agreed to allocate $600,000 toward the project, after Mr. Katz said his family is chipping in $600,000. The lot belongs to the Florida Department of Transportation. The city’s money is contingent on Skate Free getting a long-term lease of the land. Mr. Noriega reported to the city’s Off-Street Parking Board this month that talks with the state have been “very productive.”
BUYING NEXT DOOR: Ransom Everglades School officials have agreed to buy the 6.9-acre La Brisa property adjoining its Main Highway campus, with the goal of improving educational spaces while respecting the land and extensive hammock. The bayfront purchase, made possible through donations, reflects the school’s longstanding ties to Coconut Grove and its history, officials said. The La Brisa land was originally deeded in 1886 to Kirk Munroe, a noted conservationist and founding member of the Florida Audubon Society. “We can’t pass up the opportunity to buy this beautiful property,” said Head of School Penny Townsend. “The purchase will allow us to improve our facilities, add vital greenspace and continue our long tradition of respecting, protecting and learning from the treasures of Old Florida and Miami’s precious coastal ecosystems.”