Miami Beach Mayor Names New Panel on Ocean Drive to Make Recommendations for Improving Resident, Visitor Experience

Ocean Drive

Susan Askew
Susan Askew

Miami Beach Mayor Names New Panel on Ocean Drive to Make Recommendations for Improving Resident, Visitor Experience:

Members include thought leaders from business, entertainment, hospitality, arts and culture

[Updated December 11, 8 pm to reflect additional members and name change]
Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber this week renamed his new Ocean Drive Panel to the Art Deco Cultural District Panel and added new members. It's part of his push to change the dynamic of the street away from a heavy emphasis on entertainment to more of an arts and culture destination. The latest panel, with some overlapping membership from the previous group, is made up of thought leaders and power players in the business, entertainment, hospitality, and arts and culture communities. 

This summer Gelber proposed ideas to overhaul the South Beach Entertainment District (MXE) of which Ocean Drive is a key part in an effort to end what he called the “out of control” behavior there. He’s proposing an Art Deco Cultural District to replace the Entertainment District along with a series of “carrots and sticks” – legislation and policies to incentivize good business practices and new development and punishments to curb bad practices.

In a memo to City Manager Jimmy Morales dated December 2, Gelber said the new panel will provide ongoing recommendations for improving the resident and visitor experience on Ocean Drive between 5th and 15th Streets.

The members include:

Jonathan Plutzik, Chair; Owner, The Betsy

​​​​​​​Jonathan Freidin, Vice Chair; Attorney, Freidin Brown

Frank Amadeo, President of Estefan Enterprises*

Nisi Berryman, owner, Nisi B Home

Nicole Bostick, associate marketing director at Life Time where she focuses on marathons

Daniel Ciraldo, Executive Director, Miami Design Preservation League 

Thomas Donall, Owner, The Palace

Kim Eiber, business owner and art collector

Robin Jacobs, Chair, Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce; COO, Miami Beach Cosmetic Surgery

Ken Koppel, Chair, SOBESAFE

Jane Krupp, artist/designer, Ocean Drive resident

Dawn McCall, Founder and CEO, International Media and Entertainment Partners. 

Salem Mounayyer, Nakash Holdings

​​​​​​​Jen Roberts, Design Miami CEO

John Stuart, FIU Distinguished University Professor; Associate Dean for Cultural and Community Engagement and Executive Director at the Miami Beach Urban Studios in the College of Communication, Architecture + the Arts.

Ricardo Tabet, CEO, Development, Optimum Asset Management, owner of the Celino Hotel

Plutzik and Freidin were subcommittee chairs on the Mayor’s last Ocean Drive panel appointed in November 2018. Plutzik chaired the Business and Culture Practices Subcommittee on which Amadeo, Roberts, and McCall served. Freidin chaired the Safety, Security, and Infrastructure Subcommittee. 

Plutzik also chaired an Ocean Drive Task Force established in 2015 by former Mayor Philip Levine which made 30 recommendations for improving the street. That plan was later consolidated into a Ten Point Plan put forth by Commissioner Ricky Arriola. The City has been working off that plan which was accepted by City Commissioners in 2016. A number of recommendations for security, sidewalk café appearance and operation, prohibition on certain types of businesses, and area activation are either completed or ongoing. A progress report will be presented at a special meeting of the City Commission on Friday. You can find it here.

​​​​​​​The Mayor assigned various department heads to work directly with the new panel including:

Eric Carpenter, Assistant City Manager
Rickelle Williams, Director, Economic Development
Lissette Garcia-Arrogante, Director, Tourism & Culture
Chief Richard Clements, Miami Beach Police Department
Hernan Cardeno, Director, Code Compliance Department
Nick Kallergis, Senior Assistant City Attorney

Also working with the group, Bernard Zyscovich, an urban planning consultant working with the City on a long-term plan for Ocean Drive.

The panel will consist of no more than 17 members (an increase from the initial 15), “all of whom shall be appointed by the Mayor to serve for a term of no more than one (1) year at a time.” The panel reports directly to the Mayor. While recommendations are “ongoing,” the Panel will also produce two reports, one due by June 30, 2021 and the second by December 31, 2021.

*Unfortunately, shortly after being named to the panel, Mr. Amadeo passed away.

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