Located on the southern tip of Miami Beach, this 22-acre park overlooks an inlet to Biscayne Bay engineered to be a shipping channel. Following the construction of the Government Cut inlet in 1905, the area remained industrial until the City of Miami Beach located police facilities there in 1979. In 1984 the police relocated several blocks north and was replaced with a park designed by City of Miami Beach landscape architects. The park included an amphitheater, two wooden observation towers, picnic pavilions, and a 522-foot long boardwalk through existing sand dunes.
In 2009 Hargreaves Associates and Savino Miller redesigned the underused park to better integrate it with the contrasting settings of the industrial inlet and a burgeoning residential neighborhood. Entrance plazas from two primary streets extend the city’s grid into the park. A serpentine landform and pathway in the heart of the park contrasts with the linear 1800-foot long promenade along Government Cut. Active recreation areas comprised of three open lawn areas are planted with native salt-tolerant grasses and mature trees preserved from the former park. Several small tropical gardens, palm bosques, and coastal hammock plantings are adapted to the regional climate. Restored dunes along the park’s southern tip are stabilized by yuccas and sea oats. Promoting sustainability, site grading and plantings capture rainwater, amber lighting is unobtrusive to animal migrations, and locally-sourced fossilized coral serves as paving material. A large, multi-purpose plaza and café are popular destinations in addition to an amphitheater overlooking a water playground with spray fountains.