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Front Page » Business & Finance » Bayside Ferris wheel no big deal, board hears

Bayside Ferris wheel no big deal, board hears

Written by on August 6, 2019
Bayside Ferris wheel no big deal, board hears

The proposed Bayside Ferris wheel would be a fifth the size of the London Eye, the quintessential amusement ride of its kind.

That was one of the several tidbits shared by project zoning co-applicants Sky Views of America and Bayside last week to dampen any impression that the attraction would disrupt downtown’s skyline. In renderings by both the city and the applicants, the Ferris wheel could be seen overwhelmed by the nearby buildings.

“The scale of this is really tolerable,” said Miami Planning, Zoning and Appeals Board member Adam Gersen. “It makes sense, it’s not out of scale… It actually looks tiny compared to the entire site.”

The city board approved by an 8-1 vote a recommendation that the Miami City Commission approve installation of the amusement ride as well as a waiver for more height than is currently allowed under the current zoning, which is 123 feet. 

The observation wheel, as Sky Views prefer to call it, would stand 176 feet and feature LED lights on the spokes stretching from the center hub and on the ring beam, said Robert Soos of Sky Views.

Board member Alex Dominguez asked about the safety of the amusement ride, citing stories in which people die in Ferris Wheel accidents, and the installation’s hurricane preparedness.

Mr. Soos said the ride will have enclosed cabins, so people won’t be able to exit once the ride begins. He also said that the observation wheel would be able to sustain 150-mile-an-hour winds, and that a three-day plan to pull down the entire wheel except for the legs and the axle is also in place were it necessary.

Mr. Dominguez, the only board member to vote against the resolution, also said that in his opinion, the wheel “almost cheapens the downtown skyline.” Mr. Soos responded that the company’s attractions had been well-received in other cities around the country.

Board member Andres Althabe said the Downtown Neighbors Alliance had conveyed their comfort with the project, saying that they had positive conversations with the applicants on the sky wheel. 

Sky Views and Bayside aim to have the attraction installed before Super Bowl 2020, to be held Feb. 2 at the Hard Rock Stadium.

11 Responses to Bayside Ferris wheel no big deal, board hears

  1. David C Copeland

    August 7, 2019 at 8:17 am

    Miami should strive for iconic structures in downtown Miami or at least something that is uniquely Miami. Why not require the Ferris Wheel’s nadir to dip into Biscayne Bay? That would make it the only one in the world that did so. While briefly underwater, people in the sealed glass cabins could watch sea life, maybe even a mermaid show. Now that would be “Miami cool.”

    • Jorge

      August 8, 2019 at 2:11 pm

      Miami City Board is plagued by mediocrity, bad taste, lack of vision, and 1960s suburban mentality.

  2. Joe Jablonski

    August 7, 2019 at 6:53 pm

    Ithinkthis is goodidea but what about me…about that dip into biscayne bay thingamajig…i like that idea and wow how much fun for all the loney the people, where do they all come from…FROMME UK

  3. Gerwyn Flax

    August 8, 2019 at 1:09 pm

    The London Wheel certainly does not detract from the London skyline. This looks like a small toy compared to the rest of the sourounding skyline. Hardly worth the effort. It should be at least twice as large. Ferris wheels have become passe however, and this is anything but iconic. Why does Miami always go with the lowest common denominator?

  4. Jorge

    August 8, 2019 at 2:05 pm

    ”It is not our of scale”
    What is the adequate scale ratio of a Ferris wheel in comparison with the adjacent buildings. 2:1, 4:2, 1:6 ?
    This is exactly the same senseless rhetoric used by the Upper East Side antidevelopment groups to impose the arbitrary 35 feet construction limit in the now stagnated MiMo District.

  5. Antonio Alfonso

    August 10, 2019 at 1:53 pm

    If its not going to be as tall if not taller than the buildings around it whats the point. Where did they get this ferris Wheek the Jouth Fair.

  6. Jose

    August 12, 2019 at 10:32 am

    I like the idea dip into the bay. I’ve been in the London Eye and it is a yawner and a meh.

  7. Anthony F Magaldi

    August 12, 2019 at 7:48 pm

    DO IT!! This town needs something!!

  8. Kurt

    August 12, 2019 at 8:46 pm

    The same size wheel or taller are being constructed in 7 American cities including Pittsburgh. Taller should have been a must for this one.

  9. Jassica

    September 2, 2019 at 5:17 am

    Do it immediately although same size wheel.

  10. Ramses

    September 9, 2019 at 10:55 am

    Terrible eye sore. Cant believe they approved this at dying bayside as well. People are stuck in the 80’s.