Memorial Site Updates
Discussions are underway on how best to honor and remember the 98 lives lost in the collapse of Champlain Towers South. While some survivors and family members want to see a memorial at 8777 Collins Avenue, others – including the Judge overseeing the case - would rather sell the property to a developer and place the tribute at the Miami Beach park, using the money from the sale to help compensate all those who affected by the tragedy.
Here is the relevant news coverage to date:
Miami Herald – “Momentum builds for putting memorial to victims of Surfside condo at Miami Beach park”
A plan for building a memorial honoring the 98 people who died in the Surfside condominium collapse is gaining momentum — but the leading site is on donated land in a Miami Beach park a short walk from the now-vacant Champlain Towers South property.
Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Michael Hanzman, who is overseeing the fate of the condo property at 8777 Collins Ave. and supports selling it to a private developer for luxury units, expressed his preference for the memorial site in Miami Beach during a court hearing on Wednesday.
Hanzman said it would not be feasible for a government entity to buy the former 12-story condo property in Surfside at the going sales price of $120 million and build the memorial there, so an alternative free location on the Miami Beach park would be ideal. The judge, who has repeatedly said his priority is to raise as much money as possible for the victims and survivors of the June 24 collapse, called the proposed memorial site facing the ocean “absolutely gorgeous.”…Read full story here.
Associated Press – “Beach park seen as site for Florida condo collapse memorial”
An oceanfront park is emerging as the leading site for a memorial to the victims of the deadly condominium building collapse in Florida, a judge said Wednesday.
The city of Miami Beach recently offered a portion of the 28-acre North Beach Oceanside Park as the potential location to remember the June 24 collapse of the Champlain Towers South building, which killed 98 people.
Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Michael Hanzman said at a remote hearing Wednesday it was unrealistic to pursue any plan for a memorial where the 12-story condo once stood as some family members wish…Read full story here.
Miami New Times – “Conversations About the Surfside Condo Site's Future Are Underway. Is It Too Soon?”
Susana Alvarez awoke to tremors that sounded like ceaseless thunderclaps. She opened the door to her tenth-floor condominium at Champlain Towers South in the early hours of June 24, and the elevators were gone. When she made her way to a fire escape, she saw the moon, the stars, and the remains of her building below.
"There was nothing there," Alvarez says.
She ran down the fire escape, something she says she would not have been able to do if not for the help of other residents. Alvarez now wishes she could run away from Surfside — the pile of rubble, the casualties, the internal monologue about why she survived when so many others perished…Read full story here.
Associated Press – “Land swap proposed for Florida condominium collapse property”
A proposed land swap to allow for an on-site memorial to the victims of the deadly Florida beachfront condominium collapse will be examined for financial viability, a judge ordered Wednesday.
Many survivors and victim family members of the Champlain Towers South collapse oppose a memorial at a nearby Miami Beach park. And many are uneasy with replacement of that doomed building with a luxury structure on what they regard as sacred ground…Read full article here.