The City of Miami Beach’s seven miles of Atlantic Ocean shoreline are protected by a vegetated dune levee which was installed in the mid-1980s as part of the United States Army Corps of Engineers’ Dade County Beach Erosion Control and Hurricane Protection project. Historically, the City has maintained the dune as a natural system with little-to-no maintenance. Previous large-scale dune maintenance efforts were solely conducted as part of the Atlantic Greenway Network Master Plan projects, which constructed at-grade pedestrian pathways along the western edge of the dune. Additionally, since 2009, non-profit organizations have periodically removed non-natives and replanted native vegetation in North Shore Open Space Park using volunteers.
In 2012, the City developed a dune management plan that outlines specifications for restoring, enhancing, and maintaining the dune, while addressing the needs of the community’s various stakeholders. The specifications, which were developed through interdepartmental collaboration and used the best-available research, have since been used to conduct restoration and maintenance work led by in-house staff, as well as public and private contractors. The plan also designates North Shore Open Space Park and Lummus Park as areas that will be reserved for volunteer restoration efforts, except in instances when vegetative trimming is necessary.