Where's the Beach?

The true story behind the beach erosion explosion is politics as usual

Muss's suggestion was this: Haul sand from the well-nourished stretch of beach between 1st and 30th streets to the heavily eroded sections between 30th and 50th streets. Along the worst stretches of shoreline, the water was touching the boardwalk pilings and threatening to undermine the wooden structure. Access ramps that once descended smoothly from the boardwalk, across the dunes, and to the beach now were suspended four and five feet above the eroding sand.

In June the City of Miami Beach took up Muss's suggestion. Construction workers rolled out some bulldozers and began moving 7500 tons of sand from South Beach to the most heavily eroded sections of Miami Beach between 30th and 46th streets. The project was completed earlier this month, permitting the access ramps to be reopened and emergency vehicles to scoot along the beach at high tide. The stopgap measure has bought the administration some time and temporarily placated sand-starved business owners.

But while the bureaucrats continue to bumble, the steady, inexorable forces of nature grind on and the beach disappears.

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