If you love Miami’s diverse art scene, you’re going to enjoy this latest masterplan by architecture firm OMA. ReefLine is Miami Beach’s first underwater sculpture park and is planned for an area of seven miles. Though this project will include installations by countless well-known creatives, it is much more than a tourist destination. ReefLine is a resiliency project that will help combat the effects of climate change, rising sea levels, and coral reef damage that threaten the future of Miami—all while embracing the art culture of the city.
Chair of the BlueLab Preservation Society and cultural entrepreneur Ximena Caminos commissioned the architects to design a framework for art and environmental design. Since the project will have such a large environmental impact, the designers are collaborating with marine biologists, specialized researchers, engineers, and more to ensure that the materials and programs included will help—and do no harm to—the existing wildlife.
“The ReefLine is unique because it brings attention to and mitigates the dangers of climate change in Miami, while simultaneously enriching the city’s vivid art scene,” says OMA partner Shohei Shigematsu, who is leading the design. “We look forward to working with the diverse group of experts and professionals on our first underwater cultural masterplan and sculpture.”
You’ll be able to see the first build areas of the project for yourself as early as December 2021. ReefLine Phase 1 will include reef sculptures, a snorkeling path, and a protective barrier that will separate visitors from boats. Artist Leandro Elrich will recreate his popular “traffic jam” piece as the reef structures for Phase 1. In the sculptural installation, titled Concrete Coral, Elrich reframes cars and trucks—a symbol of carbon emissions and negative human impact—as hosts for vibrant underwater life. Keep scrolling to see conceptual images of this installation and more visualization by OMA.
If you like this project, make sure to check out similar underwater projects designed to mitigate environmental damage while creating an awesome place for humans to snorkel or dive. You can also listen to an episode of My Modern Met’s Top Artist Podcast where we chat with underwater sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor.